Now that you know causes of stroke and that stroke is leading in Millennials and Generation X, lets look at the signs of stroke. If you are aware of the stroke acronyms FAST and BEFAST, you be wondering what this infographic is a about.
FAST is for;
I prefer the posted infographic, because, like me, many stroke victims did not have the FAS part of FAST. In fact, I did not have any of those signs, so I did not do the T and yet drove myself to the ER. As with many, I had numbness on one side of my body and a severe headache. I was also very anxious and my heart was racing. So, don't get stuck on FAST or BEFAST. I have heard from some people that they became unconscious, even waking up days and weeks later having been in a coma, remembering nothing or very little.
The one thing that can't be agreed on is that when a stroke occurs, TIME is of the ESSENCES. There are interventions that can reduce or even reverse the outcome of stroke if treated within less than 3 hours of first onset. Since stroke signs can be from standard to obscure, most people don't realize they are having a stroke nor do they get conformation within that time frame. I always say...if in doubt, check it out.
I hope you will pass this on to the people you know and those you love. There is no one whom has had a stroke whose life is not changed forever, in one way or another. Help me spread the word about stroke.
This is a little question without a simple answer. With stroke being down over all but up in the age group of 18-54, causes of stroke vary greatly. We know that strokes can happen when the blood supply to the brain is reduced (Ischemic Stroke) or interrupted (Hemorrhagic Stroke). This deprives the brain of oxygen and nutrients leaving brain cells dead, within minutes. Some people have what is called a TIA/ Transient Ischemic Attack, or mini stroke, which tends to be a very short temporary blockage that resolves itself and doesn't leave permanent brain damage. TIA's can be a precursor to a full on brain attack and should be treated seriously. BUT why does this happen is the BIG question.
Here are some reason known to cause stroke. It is not as if these are steadfast, sure-fire reasons for a stroke, but they can increase a person's likelihood. Keep in mind, some of these issues can be changed and some may not.
Now that you have a clearer picture of the causes of stroke, come back next time as I teach how to recognize a stroke.
Perhaps you have heard what people ages 18 to 54 now have in common. No it's not that we grow up inundated with cell phones and "reality shows". Nor is it that Generation Y is the benefactor of Generation X's rejection to the status quo and the fight against the establishment just so Gen Y has a focus while they rebuild it all. No those things are far to easy. The common ground, sad to say is that there is said to be about a 53% increase of stroke amongst Americans ages 18-54. In face the statistics say that 1 in 5 stroke victims are now under the age of 55 while the overall number of stroke victims has been in decline since the mid 1990s.
What is causing this increase in stroke within young people? Of course, research cites obesity, heart disease and high blood pressure as main contributors. Then there is the lack of attention to the unset of typical signs and symptoms of stroke, but as a stroke survivor, I am here to add much more to this narrative.
Come join me as I dive in to conversations and research on stroke, what you may not know about it and what most importantly may be getting left out of the conversation you have with your medical professional. See you soon!
In the mean time, take a LOOK at this video on the subject.
Oct. 23, 2015, I was at my desk on my computer late at night and my leg felt as if it was going to sleep on my right side. Then arm started to hurt, so I went to bed. I got up at 7:30 am on the 24th and went about some Saturday errands.
At 1ish, I went to help at my son’s school for the Fall Festival. At 3ish, my head was pounding so I went home to lie down. I got anxious and could not lie down. My Mom was in town, so I said, “come on… we are going to the hospital”. I drove to an emergency room/surgery center because I knew there would be no wait even though I am closet to 3 other hospitals that are always busy.
I drove over the speed limit, but by time I got there, I knew what was happening. I am a Health Coach with Celiac Disease and I am very in tune with what goes on with my body. So, I walked in saying, “I AM HAVING A STROKE!” They tried talking me out of that with the standard standing tests. As I started cursing telling them my father passed from a Cerebral Hemorrhage at 36 years old, I had just turn 49 and I began cursing as my face dropped on the right, and them my PB was sky high. OH… OKAY, YES, SHE IS HAVING A STROKE.
In the exam room, I was given some medication and the stroke seemed to pass faster than it came but the damage was done. I had numbness and weakness on my right side. My head hurt like the time I was given Armor Thyroid for my Hypothyroid and it caused migraines that made me vomit.
I had a CT scan but they did not have anyone for the MRI on the weekend. So, I was taken by ambulance to the hospital about 5 miles away. I was a Direct Admit into a room. The staff came running to hook me up to everything. I was babbling, but thank GOD, I would think enough to kick a nurse out of my room that wanted to do a swallow eval with a turkey sandwich. I was last in that hospital May, June and July, so my records are clear that, “I have CELIAC and DON’T EAT SANDWICHES!” I asked her was she trying to kill me. She went off looking for pudding which she never found.
I finally got the MRI that showed an Ischemic Stroke; a blockage on the left side of my brain that affected my right side. I was monitored all night. They told me I stopped breathing and should probably be on a C pap for Sleep Apnea. It was a long night with all the coming and going, being hooked up and off of equipment.
The next morning, I was evaluated by Speech, PT, Neurologist and the floor attending physician. I was discharged that evening. The worst part is that I was released to go home and figure my life out on my own. I was not given a list of phone numbers to services or support groups. My head still hurt like I had been hit in the head with a hammer and all I could do is sleep. So I did. My son was at his dad’s during this time and when he returned, I explained the whole thing to him.
So for the most 2016, I was in Speech and Cognitive therapy. I was in Occupational Therapy twice in 2016. I have been in Physical Therapy 3 times and continue now. Insurance only allows a limited number of visits, and then requires a wait and a reevaluation before returning.
I still have some weakness and balance issues. I continue to have a headache (mostly on the right side) everyday and fatigue. My right leg feels like it has a steel plate for a shin. It hurts all the time, at various degrees. My right arm feels like it has a brick attached, but I use it through the pain. I had half my hair cut off to shorten the amount of time I have to use it every day. I have to check my patience and anxiety. There are days where I am short with people and know when to take a few minutes alone. If, I had to pick the worst issue after head pain, my second biggest issue is cognition. The expressive aphasia still exists. I think in my brain what I want to say, but at times, I can’t get the words out. I usually pause, briefly explain to the person what s happening and by then, the words connect. Oh, and my memory SUCKS! Sometimes, I cannot spell the simplest of words. If I did not know a person or thing before the stroke, it takes a repeated interaction to remember it/them. Everything I do, takes longer to do it. My life requires a lot more planning. I take 3 Rx, but the doctors want me on more. I avoid RX because with Celiac, gut health and balance is a slippery slope. I also have to call each manufacture (usually in India) to make sure they don’t have gluten in the pills. The US pharmacies don’t want the liability, so they won’t make the calls.
Al though I try to not let it consume me, I live in fear of Dementia or Alzheimer’s due to the traumatic brain injury. I have not returned to full-time employment, as I have no idea how that would work out. Clocking it on a set schedule would not work most days. I continue to work towards expanding my private business endeavors.
The proudest thing is that my son knows he has my support and he has not skipped a beat. He excels in his education and sports. I do what I can at school and with homework and I’m always going to be Team Mom. His health is very important to be too. I cook just about every day. I try to have leftover at times for the next day, but he is a teen whom eats like a grown man.
So that is my story. Regardless to how “minor” a person’s stroke was, NO ONE IS EVER UNAFFECTED AFTER A STROKE. If you can relate, please share your story with me.
How do you know if you have an issue with gluten if you have any of the other diseases or complications?
One thing people do is a 21 day elimination diet. To do this, you need to eliminate wheat, rye, barley and I also suggest malt and oats from your diet for 14 days. At about 1 week, you are liable to feel like crap as the body detoxes. Then between, day 7 and 14, you are on the upswing. Then you begin to eat gluten items again. For a week moving toward 21 days, you will know how you are affected by gluten. Now oats may not be an gluten item but they are usually contaminated by wheat production so I throw them in. I eat some “certified gluten free oats” from Trader Joe's after being diagnosed and I was in bed for 3 days.
Let’s talk tests:
People with Celiac Disease who eat gluten have higher than normal levels of certain antibodies in their blood. These antibodies are produced by the immune system because it views gluten as a threat. You must be on a gluten-containing diet for antibody (blood) testing to be accurate. So if you go gluten free, feel better off gluten and then want to get blood tested, they are going to tell you to eat gluten for several week to raise the antibodies to get a more accurate result. Sounds daunting right? Keep eating something that you realized is making you not feel so go.
If you still believe you have issues after testing negative or with a positive test, the gold standard is a biopsy of the small intestine which is the only way to absolutely diagnose Celiac Disease.
There are other antibody tests available to double-check for potential false positives or false negatives.
Another such tests are:
2. Total serum IgA: This test is used to check for IgA deficiency, a condition associated with Celiac Disease that can cause a false negative tTG-IgA. If you are IgA deficient, your doctor can order a DGP or tTG-IgG test.
3. Deaminated gliadin peptide (DGP IgA and IgG): This test can be used to further screen for Celiac Disease in individuals with IgA deficiency or people who test negative for tTg antibodies.
It has been a year since I was in this spot, but I am back with my 2017 MOTTO... "I AM PERFECTION PERSONIFIED!" See the graphic for more explanation. This is not in a braggadocious way. It is not just about what you do. It is who you are to your core, that probably effects what you do and how well you do it! IT SPEAKS OF YOUR CONFIDENCE. SO what is your PERFECTION PERSONIFICATION? If you can't answer this question, you don't own your PERFECT!. WHY??? If you don't own it, no one is going to believe what you are "serving". Think about it and feel free to leave a comment.
_Finally, its here! 2015 was a complete trip, filled with tons of stress. Legal challenges, three surgeries in 3 months in a row, 5 month house hunt, closing on a home and moving, start of a new school for my son, disdain for my J.O.B., and survival of a stroke and the growth of my business. Through it all...I'm still standing bitches! (of course that last part only applies to a select few people). This is the strength of how strongly I feel about where I have been, what I have been through to get to this place and where I am going.
I was that chick. I was in seemingly good health. It was a lot better than the years prior. I had lost 40 lbs in a year. I had put my hypothyroid in remission. I corrected the inflammation in my joints. I discovered what was causing breakouts. I got the diagnoses of a genetic autoimmunity which is controlled with the foods I eat. I went from a ton of prescribed medications to a few supplements. My BMI was no longer in the obese category. I don't have diabetes or heart disease. My blood work was generally good. Yet, despite all the improvements, I was under a lot of stress that was causing my blood pressure to fluctuate from low to extremely high and was operating on very little sleep.
On October 23, 2015, I had a stroke. I knew what it was after about 4 hours as my numb foot turned into my whole right side. I drove to the hospital lacking the other normal stroke symptoms. After a CT scan and MRI, it was confirmed. Now I go to rehab 4 times a week and I am progressing. The moral to this story is to, let shit go, get lots of rest, you are your own best health advocate and keep it moving.
In my quest to keep it moving, I am creating a series of ebooks called, "Ask Yourself... questions you need to address to thrive in 2016". The first topic for the month of January is, 10 ways to be more respectful to your body in 2016. You may get your copy by clicking the ebook title or you can get all of the series throughout 2016, by adding yourself to the mail list in the box to the right.
I hope to be able to connect with you throughout the year. I would love to hear your "thrive " details for and in 2016.
While having a conversation so to speak, with myself, I was thinking about the whole “Hoverboard” craze. Is this just the newest fad craze? Most of us remember when scooters and roller shoes came out and people where riding them in and out of doors. Is this a viable mood of transportation for some, barring they don’t blow up while riding the thing? Then I wondered, is this a continuation of breeding more laziness, obesity and sedentary life styles? So I looked up. “What muscles are use to ride a Hoverboard”.
Here is what I found. Most legit manufactures state the weight of a rider should be between 45 and 250 lbs, yet on the flip side say that for safety, riders should be 13 and over. I figured in this case, this is more about decision making and judgment while riding. There are warning about possible injury, as like most things, there is a learning curve to proficiency. Of course there is the issue of the boards’ combustion. Some people don’t find this as a deterrent.
The big picture for me from a health and wellness issue is, if the boards provide at least some exercise while on them? Really what are they? Transportation. Fitness apparatus. Bragging rights. Fad. It appears that operation of a Hoverboards utilizes the rider’s core, calves and feet. Yet, unlike a scooter, since the range of motion is limited, the movement is isometric as opposed to concentric (contractive) or eccentric (lengthening). That being said, for fitness, the Hoverboard rider will need others forms of exercise to get a complete workout. I know, how about walking, with free weights at a brisk pace. Your risk of spontaneous combustion is low and the cost of entry is very cheap. By the way, for transportation and fitness, a skateboard or scooter is still a better way to go.
Many gluten free products use corn as an assumed safe grain substitute. Are you buying into this myth?
A Study published in the journal Gut identified that corn gluten caused an inflammatory reaction in patients with celiac disease.
“The observation that corn gluten challenge induced an abnormal NO reaction in some of our patients with CD is intriguing as maize is considered safe and is recommended as the substitute cereal in a gluten free diet.”
Gut. 2005; 54:769-774.
Gluten Free Society's Stance
Corn is a grain. Corn has gluten. Many believe that corn gluten does not induce damage the same way that wheat, barley, and rye do. The fact of the matter is, gluten has not been studied adequately. Most of what we know about Celiac disease and gluten have to do with gliadin (the gluten found in wheat only). As a nutritionist with over 10 years of experience guiding those with gluten sensitivity, I have seen corn be a severe problem for the majority of gluten intolerant patients. Many claim that they don't react to corn and feel fine after eating it. The same can be said of those with silent celiac disease. Remember that a lack of symptoms does not mean that internal damage is not occurring. All of that being said, we should not make assumptions. Common sense and intelligent thought should be used as a basis for our dietary decisions. Gluten aside, consider the following about corn:
It is the second most commonly genetically modified food on the planet (soy is #1)
Genetic modification of foods continues to kill animals in scientific studies.
It is an incomplete protein.
It is difficult for humans to digest (ever see corn in your stool?)
It is high in calories and low in nutrient value
It is a new food to the human genome.
It is being used as a staple food for our cattle, fish, chicken, and cars.
Cows and fish are not designed to eat grain. (Have you ever seen a fish jump out of a lake into a corn field for supper?)
When animals eat corn as a staple they have shorter life spans.
Corn fed beef is linked to heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and obesity. Grass fed beef is not.
Fructose derived from corn is toxic to the liver and contributes to severe health issues.
Corn syrup has mercury in it.
The list can go on and on and on…
Many consumers bow to the alter of “Gluten Free” packaged foods as if the label is a safety net. ”Gluten Free” on the package does not mean that the food is healthy. Do not deny yourself the God given right to be healthy.
Remember, corn has gluten. The gluten in corn has not been adequately studied. Many studies to date have shown that corn induces inflammatory damage in those with gluten sensitivity. Almost half of all Celiac patients don't get better on a wheat, rye, and barley free diet. Is their a link between corn and refractory Celiac disease? At this point in time we do not know for sure, but 10 years of clinical experience with gluten intolerant patients reacting to corn is enough data for me.
In other words, be grain free for optimal health.
By Dr. Peter Osborn, Functional Medicine University
Just about a year ago, “SMASHBURGER ANNOUNCES NEW NATIONAL PARTNERSHIP WITH UDI’S GLUTEN FREE
I was just made aware of this because as a #glutenfree health coach, I don’t eat their food. I must say that all parties involved in this transaction need to be wise. In a summary, this is how I see it. One situation is that those in the Celiac community are upset that #SMASHBURGER Founder, #TomRyan said that, “Practicing a gluten-free diet is an emerging consumer trend, and #Udi’s is the clear quality leader in the gluten-free category.” Really Tom, a trend? Allow me to educate you on a few things. For those that need a gluten free life, it is not a trend, but a necessity. The reason that it is talked about so is that it has only been in the last 10 years or so that medical doctors in this country have a protocol for diagnosing #CeliacDisease. For those that are not gluten intolerant or gluten sensitive, they are choosing to be gluten free because they realize that gluten is bad for everyone.
Then there is the statement, ““Smashburger and Udi’s share a passion for providing guests with great-tasting, high-quality food, so the partnership was a natural fit for us. We are excited for the opportunity to offer our guests a premium gluten-free bun option in all of our restaurants across the country.” Again, I have to wrinkle my face at this too. “High-quality” ? The inclusion of “junk carbs”, yeast, and gums in Udi's buns should make a Celiac run the other way. Strike 1!
Allow me to break down the nutritional value of a Smashburger meal or lack thereof. As per Smashburger’s website, I will start with the carbs. Since Celiacs deal with Multi-Autoimmune Syndrome issues, this is very important to prevent Type 2 diabetes. A regular burger on a gluten free Udi’s bun, has 43g. Adding condiments would add another 10-20g. Have a regular fry with 63g and a regular Coke at 46 g, for a grand total of 162-172 carb grams. According to the #AmericanDiabetesAssociation a person concerned about diabetes, should limit their carb intake to no more than 135 to 180 a day. So one Smashburger/Udi’s mashup could be a carb intake for a whole day. Strike 2.
There is also the issue of Smash Burger products and practices. The site says the protein is cooked with dairy butter or has a soy ingredient. This is a big strike 3. Most Celiac’s try to avoid the cross re-activity of these items. At this rate, I could not even recommend a lettuce wrap. The site says items such as the buns and the proteins are cooked on shared appliance as that of gluten items; strike 4 and their out! This is called cross contamination and if not careful, Smashburger could find them self with an insurance claim for “food poisoning” or a law suit for a civil right violation of a person with a disability. (ie: #JimnNicks).
Many wonder why Udi’s chose such bed fellows and that they should require better practices. Let’s get real. Udi’s is gluten free because it makes money not ethical consciousness. Past that, they can’t dictate what a food service account does with the items they sell them. If you think a fast food company is going to care about their practices as related to the gluten free community, it will be slim pickings. It happens at other establishments too. Take #RedRobin for instance they have the same offering for their burgers. They want you to pay a dollar more for the gluten free bun and then ask about their practices of preparing that burger. Chances are your wait person has no knowledge whatsoever about what happens in the kitchen nor are they even familiar with the details and the seriousness of Celiac disease they'll call an allergy. Then there is #OliveGarden. My 11 year old wanted to go there over spring break. He has a Celiac gene, but is not reactive now. I called corporate to inquire about the ingredients in the corm pasta. I was told that they do not maintain that information, that they would have to contact the supplier and that a reply could take up to TWO weeks. He decided he does not want to go there that bad.
I say to the gluten free community, be wise. You must be your own best advocate. The only way to eat gluten free is gluten free naturally. I know it is a pain, but plan ahead and take your own food with you when you are out and about. At the very least, ASK A LOT OF QUESTIONS of the people in charge. The community needs to speak with our dollars. Stop buying these products! As MJ said, they don't really care about us!
So I ask you...do you ask enough questions when dining out? Do you call ahead and speak to someone in charge? Do you purchase from these businesses?
Having the stresses of caring for a child with health concerns and going through the termination of a failed marriage, I developed my own chronic health issues. and survived a stroke. My personal experience and research of stroke and autoimmune diseases, lead me to help myself and others.