Thursday, February 25, 2016

How to Prevent Strokes....

Today's Post:  Thursday, 2-25-2016

Before my introduction and the many other things that help prevent strokes, it may interest you to know that the single most important thing you can do is actually quite easy and is often enjoyable to do!

So, here it is and its upgrade to start!

A study in the UK of the health effects of eating 6 or more vegetables a day other than some form of potatoes and one serving of whole fruit a day found doing this literally so effective at reducing deaths from heart attacks and strokes and even deaths from ALL causes that it’s even more effective than exercise.  And it leaves drugs far, far behind!

Eating the 6 or more servings of vegetables can be challenging.

But eating just one serving of an organic fresh fruit a day—
such as at breakfast -- is quite easy.

Yet doing this is astoundingly protective all by itself!

Their research found eating just that one serving of fruit a day prevents BOTH kinds of strokes!

It prevents the obstructive or ischemic strokes that are similar to heart attacks in the brain.

And it prevents the bleeding or hemorrhagic strokes too. In fact, eating just one piece of fruit does that even better than it prevents obstructive strokes!

Do you like fresh, chilled strawberries?  Whole Foods often has organic strawberries in stock.

Do you like raisins or prunes (as dried plums prunes have all their super-nutrition but are much less tart)?  Whole Foods now sells containers year round of BOTH organic raisins and organic prunes!

Do you like blueberries in nonfat Greek Yogurt or Maple Hill full fat yogurt from grass fed cows?  Whole Foods carries those AND a super high in nutrition organic wild blueberries in their frozen food section.

Do you like blackberries that aren’t too seedy?  Whole Foods has exactly such organic blackberries in their frozen food section too.

As often happens, some have pits still.  But if you like pre-pitted cherries, Whole Foods also carries organic pitted cherries in their frozen foods section!

Do you like bananas? Virtually every food store in the country including 7-11 has those.
(You toss the peel and just eat the inside.  So they don’t have to be organic to be reasonably safe to eat.)

Fruit juices have so much free fructose they are almost as bad for you as soft drinks.  So that doesn’t work.

But I wanted the super nutrition of cranberry juice and cranberries. Then I found out that  Natures Way sells a cranberry extract!  So now I have a piece of fruit AND take one a capsule of cranberry extract each day.

And, there are two other upgrades that add to this protective effect you can do:

Bilberries are a special kind of blueberries grown in the islands that make up the UK and in Scandinavia.  In World War II it was discovered that they are unusually beneficial for your eyes in addition to the protections of regular blueberries.

Bilberries are in hardly any stores here.  BUT you can get bilberry extract supplements!
And, I take 3 capsules a day of those.

One of the protective effects of fruit is that its micronutrients make vitamin C more effective.

And, you can also take several capsules of 500 mg of vitamin C in addition to the fresh fruit.

(I also read separately that taking that much vitamin C makes strokes less likely!)

I do that too!

The things after the next section can be a bit more challenging to do but they can easily triple your protection from this point!

1.  I have a personal interest in preventing strokes for several reasons.

a) Because I’ve been under stress, had a sedentary job, drank too much as a young man –
as many young men do; and tend to tense up as if I’m about to lift a weight when I’m rushed or concentrating extremely hard while doing something physically that’s quite hard; and as a kid and later at a job I was heavily exposed to second hand smoke; AND despite my efforts gained an extra 15 or 20 pounds of fat, I developed high blood pressure.

Then, because I took proton pump inhibitors for over 20 years that damaged my blood vessels and reduced my ability to relax them, my blood pressure went up gradually over time.

So I’ve had blood pressure high enough to want to know how to prevent strokes and do those things!  (I have done them all!)

c) Because many of the drugs for high blood pressure cause severe quality of life problems, and one actually makes the underlying issues worse, I’ve not wanted to take them.  But I wanted to avoid having a stroke from my high blood pressure too.

d) My Dad’s sister died of a sudden and massive stroke when she clearly could have had 10 or 20 good years otherwise.

e) My Mom did many of the things wrong that I list here to prevent strokes.  That put her in failing health to start with at age 92.  Then a stroke killed her right at a point there was a positive in her life that could have given her another 5 good years.

2.  The Cochrane research group did a study that showed that people who had blood pressure of over 140 over 90 who took drugs had fewer strokes and heart attacks.

They found that people who did the things here had fewer strokes and heart attacks.

Then they tested people who had blood pressure of over 140 over 90 who both took preventive actions AND took the drugs.  They found that the drugs added no extra benefit in reducing the strokes and heart attacks beyond the preventive measures.

3.  Drugs are needed for blood pressure readings over 160 over 100.  But the preventive measures make developing blood pressure that high far less likely.

4.  Here are the many other ways to prevent strokes:

a)  Do short walks with fast parts 5 or more days a week.  

This is directly protective; and it prevents brain shrinkage and releases BDNF, the hormone that grows new nerves and brain cells.  

So if there IS a stroke much more of your brain’s network is in place so there is a better chance enough capacity will be left to make rehab possible.

b) Eating wild caught fish and taking omega 3 supplements and DHA enhances the nerve growth and repair from walking; it reduces the risk of heart disease and ischemic or obstructive strokes, THREE ways.

c)   STOP eating and drinking heart attack starters because the same things cause ischemic or obstructive strokes, 

There are dozens of these.  BUT the list of the worst ones list is much shorter.

* Stop Both regular AND diet soft drinks! Both fatten and cause heart disease & strokes. Oddly diet soft drinks fatten MORE than regular one!

And, if you consume those and become significantly fatter, your blood pressure will go up which increases your risk of stroke.

Conversely, if you drink them now and stop totally, you’ll lose much of the fat they added to you and may have lower blood pressure which reduces your risk of strokes!

b) Stop the high fructose corn syrup and artificial sweeteners soft drinks use in ALL other foods.

There are many other things in soft drinks that harm your health.  But those are the ones that fatten and cause heart disease and strokes. So avoid all other foods that have them!

c) Totally stop any and all hydrogenated oils!  

(The only safe intake of these is ZERO!  Any regular intake, even if small, builds up to damaging levels within a few days.)

All margarines, shortening, nondairy creamer, and the like are MADE OUT OF this horrible ingredient!  So never eat them again.

And, hydrogenated oils are in so many foods they shouldn’t be that you must read labels if the food has one.  If partially hydrogenated oils shows up on a label NEVER buy or eat that food if you want to avoid strokes and heart attacks!

d) NEVER again eat ANY wheat or wheat bread!  

This one is far less known but wheat bread boosts blood sugar 50% more than sugar and causes inflammation and fattens too! 

Today’s hybrid wheat also causes more inflammation and gluten sensitivity and is even more harmful than wheat was a 100 years ago!

Dr William Davis found that stopping ALL wheat and most excess sugars plus adding exercise and wild caught fish and taking omega 3 supplements and DHA is one of the fastest and most effective ways to prevent heart attacks.  (This also prevents obstructive or ischemic strokes!)

e)  Eat organic green vegetables daily and take vitamin K1 that they are rich in.  That specifically reduces the risk of bleeding or hemorrhagic strokes by ensuring better blood clotting.   (It does not cause harmful blood clotting but only ensures abnormal bleeding never happens or stops promptly when it should.)

f)  Stop 100 % of your exposure to tobacco smoke!  

Every exposure adds plaque in your blood vessels which makes heart attacks and obstructive strokes more likely and then certain eventually.

AND, tobacco smoke exposure triggers heart attacks in people who would have escaped them otherwise!  Both of these make strokes more likely.

g) Avoid or stop heavy drinking.  If you binge drink too often or keep doing it occasionally past age 30 it will cause high blood pressure. It also tends to fatten if you keep doing it.

(One glass of red wine before dinner only has health benefits.  But after dinner as well causes poor sleep quite reliably.  And, much more than that the harms of alcohol begin to outweigh the benefits!)


All of these are doable.  People who do them all live longer and have better health otherwise.

And, their risk of strokes drops like rock!  

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