Sugary drinks might damage brain

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Excess sugar, especially the fructose in sugary drinks, might damage your brain, new research suggests. Researchers found that people who drink sugary beverages frequently are more likely to have poorer memory, smaller overall brain volume, and a significantly smaller hippocampus. A follow-up study found that people who drank diet soda daily were almost three times as likely to develop stroke and dementia when compared to those who did not.


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#LeanOnMe challenge #StrokeEurope

We invite you to the #LeanOnMe challenge, to show your support to stroke survivors and their families by posting pictures of stroke survivors held by the hands by family members or friends. Let’s raise awareness about the type of support that all stroke survivors and their families need!

Leanonme Strokeeurope

Source: Facebook

“The 10 days that Diana was hospitalized in the Cerebro Vascular Unit of Hospital de S. José, I spent by her side. From the time I woke up until she fell asleep, I felt that all the positive energy I could get through to her would work.
In fact, the team of doctors and nurses themselves said that the results and recovery were visible. When they came to share the advances in recovery with us and our children, they showed more joy and happiness than they had ever shown before.
“The mother can already reach her face with her right hand,” I said to the kids “One more victory. One more day of success. Which doesn’t allow us to sit back and relax, but work to achieve even more victories in the future!”
The “slow” but effective recovery was bearing fruit. Yesterday she could not move her index finger on her right hand, but she can do it today! Yesterday the headaches were at level 8, today they are already at level 7! Visible progress of those who accompanied me daily and felt that Diana was well taken care of, accredited people who did good, people with whom I created bonds, because they were taking care of the woman I love.
After the critical phase, when, so to speak, her life was no longer in danger, Diana returned to Amadora-Sintra Hospital from where she had left a month after the stroke, to the Rehabilitation Medicine Center of Alcoitão. She could already be transferred from the bed to a wheelchair, had recovered some movements and finally could receive the visits of the children, relatives and friends. I remind everyone who is reading this testimony that life is made up of challenges and achievements, happy moments and moments of sadness, emotions, feelings and energies. And, as a final note, I want to say that FORCE COMES FROM THE MIND AND OUR BELIFS! “

(Husband of a young female stroke surviver, Portugal AVC)

Stroke burdens everyone in the vicinity of the survivor, in every level imaginable. From the moment it happens, the person experiencing it and everyone in his/her life suffers. The biggest burden is evidently on the stroke survivor, since his/her life changes completely. The #LeanOnMe challenge is about showing your support to stroke survivors and their families by posting pictures of stroke survivors held by the hands by family members or friends. Let’s raise awareness about the type of support that all stroke survivors and their families need!

Stroke is a disease that brings chaos to the brain, body and soul of a person. Since one third of all stroke survivors are left with impairments, mild, moderate or severe, they need not only physical rehabilitation and help, but also emotional. No matter how severe the impairments are, the moment a stroke occurs brings the realization of death to all survivors. That is the moment he/she realizes for the first time in their life that they are not immune to death, and that they have to change. And to change is something that most people find very difficult. Apart from the inner fight a stroke survivor has, he also becomes very dependent on his family- physically, emotionally and financially. Consequently the dynamics of the family also changes. The person, who was an equal when it comes to pulling the family forward, can become the person everyone needs to take care of, which can be very stressful, for the stroke survivor and everyone else.

The necessity of support groups and facilities for stroke survivors and their families is a must when it comes to healthcare. The change it brings is not something to be taken lightly. When it comes to taking care of the survivor, the carers usually have no experience in taking care of a disabled person, so it often happens that a stroke survivor comes back for his/her 6-month check-up in a worst state than he/she was in at discharge. Not all people know how to properly take care of a person who is bed-bound. This is where the help of a professional nurses or carers come in. There should be people teaching family members/carers how to help the survivor with his treatment and everyday life.

Apart from the physical help, support groups and professionals helping with emotional strain of living with stroke are also of utmost importance. Stroke can cause stress, depression, change in behavior, and other neurological changes and problems to the survivor, which greatly influences all of his relationships. Learning to live and help with the above mentioned consequences of stroke is not only helpful for the survivor himself/herself, but also to his family and community.


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On April 11th over 200 Dutch healthcare professionals attended the ‘Het Venijn zit in de staart’ (“The sting is in the tail“) congress, a yearly event organised by Hersenletsel.nl, the Dutch Brain Injury Association.

As Monique Lindhout, SAFE board member and CEO of the Dutch stroke support organisation Hersenletsel.nl said, Main subject of the congress was ‘Family Matters’. Now that more people survive stroke and other brain injuries while health care finances are cut at the same time, care for all people with brain injuries in the Netherlands, both in rehabilitation and in chronic phase, is lacking.


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No stroke is the same, and the impact on stroke survivors and their families/care givers can be devastating and multifaceted. Apart from body functions, stroke also affects everyday activities, not just of the stroke survivor but everyone around him. How these consequences influence the stroke survivor and his environment greatly depends on the rehabilitation after stroke. One third of stroke survivors walks out of the hospital with no consequences, and continue to live their lives as if nothing had happened. But one third of stroke survivors are left with permanent disabilities, varying in intensity and scale. The Burden of Stroke Report is coming on May 11th this year, with a full review of post-stroke care in 35 European countries. Meanwhile…


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Aphasia, a language disorder commonly diagnosed in stroke patients, may not be solely a language issue as traditionally believed, according to a Penn State study.

The study adds to a growing body of research highlighting other cognitive functions affected by aphasia, and indicates that the consequences of brain damage in aphasia patients may be more extensive than originally thought.

“The findings are significant because they can influence how patients with aphasia are treated to ensure a more complete recovery,” said Chaleece Sandberg, assistant professor of communication sciences and disorders at Penn State and principal investigator of the study.


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The first three days are of utmost importance for the recovery and survival rate of the stroke patient, since they can determine if the patient will have lifelong disabilities or leave the hospital and continue to be a productive part of the community.

-While blowing up a balloon in the night of New Year’s Eve 1997 my first stroke occurred.
I thought: “OK, something must have happened in my brain”. As I lost total ability to speak, I could not inform my family or someone else about my condition. Neither my family nor myself imagined that I was having a stroke.
The emergency service was informed, but could not assign the symptoms properly (short unconsciousness, loss of speech, disability to stand erect) as well. The doctor told us that everything would be just all right very soon. When there was no sign of recovery after half an hour, the emergency service was called again. This time, it was recommended to go straight to the hospital. No ambulance was sent. So I was carried to an accident and emergency department of a nearby hospital by private car. The opening and admission to this department was refused in the beginning, because I was not transported in a horizontal position. It was not until heavy controversies of hospital staff and my accompanying people that I was finally admitted.
At last I laid in the emergency department and waited for the doctor to come. During the brief examination that followed I had the impression that the doctor had a preconceived idea of my status (for it was the night of New Year’s Eve). He offered me a bed to have a good’s night rest and I got an infusion to recover much faster.
I needed almost three days (without being able to speak) to explain the staff that something was wrong with my brain and that they should apply a CT.
The next day (the day my discharge was originally planned) I was informed that I had a left-hemisphere stroke and I had to stay in the hospital. I objected, shaking my head.
I am sure, if I had paid attention to stroke before and as a healthy man it would have saved myself and of course my family a lot of trouble and worries. With the knowledge about risk factors and symptoms of stroke, it is much easier for bystanders and stroke victims to inform the emergency medical service in a more detailed and qualified way, in order to get a quick and efficient therapy.
Unfortunately, despite of great efforts of some institutions and organisations, low knowledge about stroke is still prevalent in the population.
From my point of view, a better education and knowledge about stroke is very important, not just for the old, but also for the youth as well.

(Male stroke survivor, 50+, Germany; date of stroke Dec 1997)


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Written by Honor Whiteman
Published on medicalnewstoday.com

A peptide derived from spider venom could be key to preventing brain damage caused by stroke, according to the results of a new study.
Researchers found that the peptide Hi1a – present in the venom of the Australian funnel web spider – blocks ion channels in the brain that play a role in stroke-induced brain damage.


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