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Fit stroke survivors recover faster, study says

August 19, 2009 by  

Fit stroke survivors recover faster, study says It turns out going to the gym not only helps maintain proper weight and release stress, but it may also speed recovery after a stroke, according to new research.

The study conducted at the Mayo Clinic in Florida suggests patients who exercised regularly before they had a stroke were more likely to have milder impairments and were better able to care for themselves, compared to those who did not.

Mayo Clinic neurologist and the study’s lead investigator Dr. James Meschia says it makes sense that individuals who are physically fit would recover quicker.

"A brain that has good blood and oxygen flow from aerobic exercise will be in a better position to compensate for neurological deficits caused by a stroke," he stresses.

Stroke is the third leading cause of mortality, killing more than 780,000 Americans every year, according to data from the National Institutes of Health. It is also a major cause of disability and carries a significant economic and social cost.

Alternative medicine practitioners believe natural remedies may help reduce the risk of stroke, and they recommend using supplement such as horse chestnut, ginger and ginkgo biloba extracts that normalize circulation and promote blood vessel health.

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