How To Design a Diet for Stroke Victims

A stroke happens when blood doesn’t reach the brain and brain tissue becomes damaged.  This happens when arteries become clogged due to fats and toxins from the diet.  It may be a cause of high blood pressure.  When designing a diet for stroke victims, choose only food that helps them recover and prevents another stroke attack.

Consider the effects of medication.  There are certain medications for stroke that interact with food.  One of these is warfarin (a drug which prevents blood clots) that interacts with vitamin K (vitamin which helps blood to clot properly).  When the stroke victim is taking warfarin, make sure he gets a consistent amount of vitamin K.  Never reduce or increase his vitamin K intake drastically, or he may suffer hemorrhages.  Know the effects of his medication on certain food and plan his diet accordingly.

Decrease sodium (salt) in his diet.  Salt increases blood volume, which leads to high blood pressure and stroke.  Never give salty food.  Check the salt content of the food you plan to give the stroke victim and choose salt-free alternatives.  Avoid using salty seasonings.  Never feed the stroke victim junk food; these don’t help him become healthy and worsens his condition.

Include potassium in his diet.  Potassium reduces the sodium level in the body.  Potassium rich foods are oranges, bananas, tomatoes, avocados, potatoes, spinach, and prunes.  Be careful that you give constant amounts of potassium when the stroke victim is taking warfarin.

Give plenty of fruits and vegetables.  Fruits and vegetables are rich in vitamins that help the body recover from stroke.  It gives much-needed fiber to clean out toxins and fats from the digestive system.  However, never give too much fiber to prevent constipation.

Never give cholesterol-rich food.  Too much fat and cholesterol in the diet is the major cause of stroke.  Never aggravate his condition by including red meat, dairy products, and processed food in his diet.  Instead, give him low-fat foods and lean meat.

Give food with omega-3.  Omega-3 is a fatty acid present in fish that lowers cholesterol levels.  Salmon and mackerel are some fish that are rich in omega-3.   If the stroke victim is allergic to seafood, consider giving omega-3 supplements instead.

Add grains to the diet.  Grains are known to lower cholesterol levels in the body.  Choose browner varieties of grains because this is more natural and healthier than whiter ones.  Whole grains are especially effective; include this in their diet whenever possible.

Give small meal portions.  Never give too much food than what the stroke victim needs.  When foods are consumed in excess, the excess turns to fat that increases the risk of another stroke. 

Never give fried foods.  Fried foods have high cholesterol level in them.   Instead of frying, consider baking, steaming or other cooking alternatives.

When the stroke victim has difficulty eating, consider pureeing the food.  Make sure that the food you give is easy to eat.  Explain the benefits of the food you are giving to encourage the victim to accept the new diet. 


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