Also called a cerebrovascular accident, a stroke occurs when the blood supply to the brain is interrupted, and the brain is deprived of the oxygen it needs to function. An ischemic stroke, the most common type, is caused by a blocked blood vessel in the brain. A hemorrhagic stroke develops when an artery in the brain leaks or bursts. Brain damage can begin within minutes, so it is important to recognize stroke symptoms and act fast. Quick treatment can help limit damage to the brain and increase the chance of a full recovery.
Symptoms of a stroke, which happen quickly, typically include numbness or paralysis on one side of the body (usually the face, arm, or leg); dim, blurry, or double vision; difficulty speaking and understanding; dizziness; unsteadiness when walking; and severe headache. About 80 percent of strokes are caused by atherosclerosis, which results from a gradual buildup of plaque on artery walls, eventually causing them to close. High blood pressure is another major risk factor.
After experiencing a stroke, following your doctor’s orders is crucial for stabilizing your condition and reducing the risk of having another one. In addition to any prescribed medications and therapies, eating a well-balanced diet that includes lots of fresh vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein is recommended. This type of diet will help protect blood vessels, oxygenate tissues, and fight damaging free radicals. The following nutritional supplement program is designed to further support stroke recovery. However, if your stroke was hemorrhagic, do not take these nutrients until your physician confirms that there is no further risk of bleeding.
If you experience any symptoms of a stroke, immediately call 911 or another emergency service. If the symptoms occur, but go away quickly, be sure to contact your doctor immediately. You may have had a transient ischemic attack (TIA). Also known as a mini-stroke, a TIA is often a warning that a stroke may occur soon. Seeking immediate treatment can help prevent it.
Supplements for Stroke Recovery
• Coenzyme Q10
• EPA/DHA (fish oil)
• Glycerophospho-choline (GPC)
• NADH – Reduced and more active form of niacin
• Vinpocetine – Do not take if you are taking a blood thinner
• Vitamin B3 (niacin)
• Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine)
• Vitamin B9 (folic acid)
• Vitamin B12 – High doses can deplete your body of other vitamins in the B complex