(NaturalHealth365) Every year, around 15 million people around the world suffer from a stroke. Strokes occur when blood supply becomes blocked in the brain. This can be caused by a blood clot or burst blood vessel. However, environmental and lifestyle conditions also factor into the causes of a stroke.
Blood flow impairment in the brain results in a lack of oxygen to the tissues. This lack of nourishing oxygen then causes the demise of brain cells. Depending upon the severity, strokes can cause body paralysis, confusion, loss of memory, speech difficulties, and temporary or permanent disability.
Causes of a stroke related to air pollution, diet and lifestyle
In many cases, a stroke can be so severe it causes death. Of the 15 million people who suffer a stroke each year, 5 million become permanently disabled, and 6 million of them die.
In the past, the causes of a stroke were associated mainly with aging. However, new research is implicating factors like air pollution, diet and prescription medications as major components. Some estimates put as much as 30 percent of all strokes worldwide as caused by air pollution, both household and environmental.
However, there are numerous other risk factors for stroke. About 90 percent of stroke risk factors are related to lifestyle considerations that can be addressed and changed. The 10 leading risk factors for stroke are as follows:
• High blood pressure
• Low intake of fruit
• High BMI (body mass index)
• Too much sodium
• Cigarette smoking
• Not eating enough vegetables
• Air pollution
• Household contaminant exposure
• Not eating enough whole grains
• High blood glucose levels
Medications, even properly prescribed, can also be a major cause of strokes; this is a risk factor that is often overlooked. However, control of these stroke risk factors could prevent as many as 75 percent of strokes suffered around the world.
Poor air quality accounts for as many as 30 percent of all strokes worldwide
While most of these causes of stroke are related to diet and lifestyle, global pollution and air quality must also be addressed. Areas of China as well as larger cities around the world tend to have higher pollution rates than rural areas. If an individual or family is unable to move from a polluted area, they are forced to endure these conditions.
Of course, if you can’t avoid an area with poor air quality – think about purchasing an air purification system and have lots of plants in your home.
Moving away from industrial areas and reducing exposure to chemically-based household products such as personal care and cleaning substances can help to reduce stroke risk. However, it is crucial for governments worldwide to prioritize public health policies and programs related to air pollution. Because, after all, corporations can’t be allowed to behave so recklessly toward our environment.
Risk factors for stroke reduced through consistent, healthy choices
Meanwhile, the individual can address risk factors for stroke related to their diet, health and lifestyle choices. Eating more organic fruits and vegetables is a good place to start. Increasing exercise and avoiding processed salt, sugar, alcohol and smoking is also essential.
Health issues like high blood pressure and high blood sugar should be addressed. Whenever possible, use natural cures instead of medications. Getting enough daily vitamin C and D has also been shown to lower the risk of having a stroke.