Stroke is the third leading cause of death in the United States and the leading cause of long-term disability. Strokecenter.org estimates that each year 795,000 people suffer a stroke in the United States alone. More than 140,000 die and tens of thousands are permanently disabled. Discover 5 supplements that could prevent strokes.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension, obesity, and smoking are risk factors for stroke. Unfortunately, the CDC estimates that one in three American adults has at least one of these conditions. These figures serve as a reference for those of us who are not in that country.
5 supplements that could prevent strokes
Because what we put into our bodies plays a critical role, we are going to analyze the foods that can improve your chances. Whether you get these ingredients through whole foods (the best source) or through supplements, you can rest assured that they are all "heart healthy."
1. Fatty acid DPA
DPA is a polyunsaturated fatty acid found in fish. You can also get this through fish oil supplements. Studies show that DPA improves fat metabolism, promotes cell growth, and reduces inflammation.
Long-chain fatty acids, like omega-3s, improve not only our heart health but also our brain function. As one of the most researched supplements out there, omega-3s play an irreplaceable role in preventing strokes.
Other food sources of DPA include grass-fed beef and seafood. Alcohol consumption is a known barrier to omega-3 absorption; As such, you should consider reducing or abstaining from alcohol.
Do you enjoy a piece or three of dark chocolate every now and then? According to an 11-year study of 21,000 people, researchers in England found that Britons who ate as much as 3.5 ounces of dark chocolate a day had fewer strokes than those who abstained.
However, not all chocolate is created equal. When it comes to heart health, choose high-quality dark chocolate that contains at least 70 percent cocoa.
The Institute of Medicine prescribes 38 grams of fiber daily for men and 25 grams of fiber for women. How much fiber do we eat, on average? 16 grams.
Fiber is one of the best ingredients for a healthy heart. Research shows that fiber lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, two of the main risk factors for stroke that we discussed earlier. In addition, fiber increases satiety or the feeling of fullness. As a result, we are less likely to indulge our sugar cravings.
Excellent sources of fiber include apples, barley, beans, berries, carrots, celery, citrus fruits, nuts, oats, and whole grains.
Potassium is critical for heart health. In fact, without potassium, our heart would not be able to beat since the nutrient is necessary for nervous communication. (The heart relies on a vibrant network of nerve cells to communicate with the brain and other parts of the body.)
Up to one hundred thousand times a day, potassium helps the heart to effectively distribute blood throughout our bodies. Potassium also helps our muscles move effectively and promotes kidney function.
You can find potassium in a dietary supplement or from natural food sources. The best foods include avocados, bananas, low-fat yogurt, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, and plain orange juice.
5. Folic acid
Folic acid is an essential B vitamin that helps break down the amino acid homocysteine. If the body contains too much of this, it can trigger strokes.
A recent study shows that women who take at least 1,000 micrograms (μg) daily have a 46% lower risk of developing high blood pressure. Given the amount of folic acid required to achieve these benefits, you must combine supplements with dietary sources.
Good food sources of folic acid include avocados, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts. Dried beans, walnuts, okra, peas, spinach, and turnip greens are also on the list.
Final thoughts: let's get a healthy heart!
We need to consciously do what is best for our hearts, day after day. We would be wise to pay close attention. Every cell in our body depends on a healthy and functional heart to distribute oxygen and nutrients. Every organ requires a constant influx of oxygen-rich blood to function, and this includes our precious and delicate brains.
In conclusion, proactive heart care is an important part of a healthy and vigorous life. Do your best to maintain a healthy weight, exercise regularly, and reduce or eliminate addictions.
If you're only on a health kick to lose weight or look a certain way, it will be hard to lose weight permanently. Weight loss is a fine goal, but finding something else to motivate you can help. It takes time to lose weight, and you need to motivate yourself throughout the journey. One way is to find more reasons to be healthy. Remind yourself of all the benefits of exercise, including increased energy, better moods, and an improved night's sleep, just to name a few.