Stroke: Three foods to reduce complications from severed blood supply to the brain

Doctor William Li noted: “Certain foods can help limit and reduce complications after a stroke.” What does he recommend? Firstly, Doctor Li suggests eating Chinese celery, which contains a bioactive compound called “NBP”, which “improves brain circulation”. NBP is also said to lower brain inflammation; it encourages nerve cells and “limits brain damage [from] a stroke”.

Another dietary addition Doctor Li approves of is black plums, which have “angiogenesis-stimulating properties”.

Doctor Li explained: “[Angiogenesis-stimulating properties] are needed to help your blood vessels heal and grow after a stroke.

“They also contain antioxidants that help reduce inflammation.”

Doctor Li also suggests incorporating the herb rosemary into your diet, as it contains angiogenesis-stimulating properties.

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Moreover, its compounds, such as rosmarinic acid, “can help prevent the death of brain cells”.

Stroke recovery

“The first three months after a stroke are the most important for recovery and when patients will see the most improvement,” said Doctor April Pruski, a stroke and rehabilitation specialist.

Some patients might experience “spontaneous recovery” from this point onwards, which is where a skill or ability, seemingly lost following the stroke, returns.

“After six months, improvements are possible but will be much slower,” added Doctor Pruski.

Possible stroke complications

The Stroke Association cautioned about the possible physical effects caused from a stoke.

Symptoms can range from muscle weakness, fatigue to foot drop – where the toes catch the ground when stepping forward and each step may be higher than usual.

Physiotherapy can be useful in treating foot drop, as it can strengthen the ankles and lower leg muscles.

Communication issues may arise following a stroke, such as aphasia, which affects the ability to speak, to understand others and, in some cases, the ability to read and write.

Considered a “common problem” following a stoke, aphasia affects up to a third of stroke survivors.

Dysarthria could develop, which is when the speech becomes slurred or slow, making your voice seem more quiet.

Speech and language therapy can be useful in addressing these complications of stroke.

As for other side effects of a stroke, health complications can range from changes in behaviour, emotional changes, to hallucinations and delusions.

Behavioural changes can include apathy, anger and aggression, to “inappropriate behaviour”.

Examples include standing too close to other people, interrupting others when speaking, and making tactless remarks or acting impulsively.

“It’s not always possible to go back to the way you were before a stroke,” the charity noted.

“But you can get help and support to make the best recovery possible for you.”

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