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Feature Article How to Think FAST and Reduce Your Risk of Stroke

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If you or a loved one might be having a stroke, it is important to think FAST. This is used to help identify the signs of a stroke, including facial drooping, arm or leg weakness, slurred speech and time, which means it is time to call 911. Knowing how to respond to a stroke is vital, but how can the risk of stroke be reduced?

There are several lifestyle factors that contribute to the risk of having a stroke. Eating healthy, balanced meals is one key step to reduce your risk. Limiting intake of sodium and trans fats is a great place to start. Next, mixing in plenty of vegetables and lean meats will help lower blood pressure, which is the leading cause of stroke.

Staying active is also important in limiting one’s risk of stroke. Completing 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week is recommended for optimal benefit. This may sound daunting, but can easily be broken up into shorter activities ranging from hiking to cycling to walking your dog.

Incorporating these tips into your daily life will not only help you to feel better, but will greatly decrease your chances of experiencing a stroke. It is also important to discuss other medical and genetic factors with your doctor. 

The Samaritan Stroke Services team of specialists includes emergency room doctors, neurologists, nurses, speech language specialists and many others who work together to stop and reverse the damaging effects of a stroke.  For more information about Samaritan Stroke Services, call 541-768-6737, or visit samhealth.org/Stroke.