Simple actions that reduce the risk of stroke

People who are genetically at a higher risk of stroke can reduce that risk by up to 43%. By adopting a healthy, heart-friendly lifestyle, according to new research from UTHealth Houston. Published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

Specifically, the study included 11,568 adults aged 45 to 64. Who hadn’t had a stroke yet and were followed for an average of 28 years.

The recommendations of the American Heart Association

Management of Cardiovascular health levels is based on the American Heart Association’s recommendations includes stopping smoking, eating better, exercising, losing weight, managing blood pressure, controlling cholesterol and lowering blood sugar.

Brain and healthy lifestyle

Firstly, scientists calculated a lifetime risk of stroke according to what is called a polygenic stroke risk score.

“Our study confirmed that modifying lifestyle risk factors, such as blood pressure control, can offset the genetic risk of stroke.” Said senior author and professor of molecular medicine and human genetics in the Institute for Molecular Medicine at UTHealth Houston.

“We can use genetic information to identify who is at higher risk and encourage them to adopt a healthy cardiovascular lifestyle to reduce that risk and live better,” he adds.

Reduced risk despite genetic factors

Study participants who scored highest for genetic stroke risk and didn’t lead a healthy lifestyle faced a 25% increased risk of stroke.

Moreover, regardless of the level of genetic risk of stroke, those who followed recommendations for optimal cardiovascular health reduced that risk by 30% to 45%.

In other words, this means, according to experts, six additional years of stroke-free life.

Overall, people who didn’t follow the American Heart Association‘s recommendations had the highest risk of stroke (56.8%) while those who followed had a much lower rate (6.2%).


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