Each year nearly 800,000 people in the United States have a stroke. High blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, obesity, smoking, and diabetes are major causes of stroke. Fortunately, you can take steps right now to protect your cardiovascular system and lower your chances of having a stroke.
Cardiovascular physician Nader Chadda, MD, and the team at Advanced Heart and Vascular Associates want everyone to take the best care of their heart and vascular system. Most stroke prevention steps are the same as those that prevent heart disease. Many of the things you can do to protect your cardiovascular system are practical lifestyle changes that you can begin right now to improve your heart and vascular health.
Keep reading to find out what you can do to gain control and reduce your stroke risk and how we can help you at our offices in Land O Lakes, Hudson, and Brooksville, Florida.
Lower high blood pressure
High blood pressure is one of the leading risk factors for stroke. More than 100 million Americans have high blood pressure, and many of them are unaware of it. High blood pressure can silently damage your blood vessels for years without your knowledge.
The goal is to maintain a blood pressure less than 120/80. If your blood pressure is high, Dr. Chadda will set a target and advise you on changes you can make to bring your blood pressure down.
For most people, medication and diet and lifestyle changes are enough to bring blood pressure out of the danger zone. Changes such as slashing the sodium in what you eat are the cornerstone of a heart-healthy diet.
Slim down if you’re overweight
Obesity places a tremendous burden on your organs and body systems, including your heart and circulatory system. Carrying excess weight raises your risk for stroke, as well as chronic diseases that contribute to stroke, including high blood pressure and diabetes. Talk to Dr. Chadda about tools and resources to help you lose weight if you’re overweight.
Move your body more
Exercise is essential to health. It lowers blood pressure, promotes weight management, and reduces your risk for chronic diseases. Getting more exercise is a practical way to lower your risk of stroke and other chronic diseases. If you aren't sure where to start, try walking. Whether you walk in your neighborhood or at your favorite mall, it's important to get your body moving. Exercise keeps your heart strong and promotes healthy cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar.
Manage chronic diseases
If you currently have a chronic disease such as diabetes, it's important that you work with your doctor to manage it. Doing so helps you feel and function better, and it lowers your risk of serious health complications, including stroke.
It's important to seek treatment for issues such as high cholesterol to lower your risk factors for heart disease and stroke. See your doctor for recommended health exams so that you can have your blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and weight checked.
Work with a cardiovascular physician
If you’re concerned about the health of your cardiovascular system, it's wise to work with a cardiovascular physician to ensure that your heart and blood vessels are in tiptop shape. Dr. Chadda can perform appropriate tests to check how well your heart works, how efficient your circulatory system functions, and whether you have factors that increase your risk for diseases that affect your cardiovascular system.
Your cardiovascular health is our No. 1 priority. For more information on stroke prevention, and for all of your cardiovascular needs, give us a call to schedule a visit with Dr. Chadda, or book online today.