What Are 6 Foods That Prevent Stroke?

Medically Reviewed on 12/29/2022
6 Foods That Prevent Stroke
Unhealthy eating habits might result in high blood pressure and cholesterol, enhancing your chances of having a stroke.

Numerous epidemiological studies suggest that nutrition influences stroke development and dietary adjustments can prevent that.

The key to eating healthily is to consume a wide range of healthy foods from all food groups.

  • Consume more fruits and vegetables, beans, and legumes.
  • Eat more fiber, which is in fruit and grain (cereal) meals.
  • Limit processed meats and have fresh fish, lean meats, and poultry.
  • Include healthy protein, such as milk, yogurt, cheese or low-fat equivalents, eggs, tofu, nuts, and seeds.
  • Reduce your intake of salt, sugar, and saturated fat, and consume lots of water.

The Mediterranean diet, which includes olive oil, canola oil, omega-3 fish oil, balsamic vinegar, vitamins, and antioxidants, is advised for stroke prevention. This diet limits trans fats, harmful fats of animal origin, and cholesterol.

6 foods that help prevent stroke

1. Blueberries

  • Antioxidants help relax the blood arteries and increase blood flow while decreasing inflammation.
  • Researchers found that blueberries and other berries are rich in antioxidants, which can reduce the chance of having a second heart attack or stroke.
Table 1. The nutritional values of one cup (148 grams) of raw blueberries
Nutrient Amount
Fiber 3.55 grams
Iron 0.414 mg
Folate 8.88 mcg
Potassium 114 mg
Vitamin C 14.4 mg
Vitamin A 4.44 mcg
Beta carotene 47.4 mcg
Lutein + zeaxanthin 118 mcg

2. Spinach

  • High in iron and folic acid, which can boost the production of red blood cells.
  • Improves the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood, resulting in faster blood circulation and a lower risk of stroke.
Table 2. The nutritional values of one cup (25 grams) of raw spinach
Nutrient Amount
Fiber 0.55 grams
Iron 0.677 mg
Folate 48.5 mcg
Potassium 140 mg
Vitamin C 7.02 mg
Vitamin A 117 mcg
Beta carotene 1,407 mcg
Lutein + zeaxanthin 3,050 mcg

3. Sweet potatoes

  • High in antioxidants, which help reduce plaque development in blood vessels.
  • Baked sweet potato with skin contains fiber and vitamin A, which help function the heart, lungs, and kidneys properly.
Table 3. The nutritional values of one medium (151 grams) of boiled sweet potato without skin
Nutrient Amount
Fiber 3.78 grams
Iron 1.09 mg
Folate 9.06 mcg
Potassium 347 mg
Vitamin C 19.3 mg
Vitamin A 1,188 mcg
Beta carotene 14,260 mcg

4. Oatmeal

  • Reduces bad or low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, which can help prevent stroke.
  • Researchers reported that consuming oatmeal reduces the risk of cardiovascular illness, such as stroke.
  • Participants who ate oats had lower levels of LDL and triglyceride, total cholesterol to high-density lipoprotein or good cholesterol ratio, and inflammatory markers.
  • Start your day with a three-fourth cup of oatmeal. Avoid instant and consume steel-cut oats because it contains more fiber.
Table 4. The nutritional values of one cup (156 grams) of oats
Nutrient Amount
Fiber 16.5 grams
Iron 7.36 mg
Folate 87.4 mcg
Potassium 669 mg
Beta carotene 14,300 mcg

5. Low-fat milk

  • Despite the bad reputation of dairy, researchers suggest that those who consume more dairy, notably milk and cheese products, had a decreased risk of stroke.
  • Calcium, magnesium, and potassium are abundant in dairy products.
  • All these nutrients can help decrease blood pressure.
  • Aim for two or three servings each day.
  • Have low-fat or fat-free milk to avoid saturated fat, which has been related to cardiovascular disease.
Table 5. The nutritional values of one cup (246 ml) of one percent low-fat milk with added vitamin A and vitamin D
Nutrient Amount
Calcium 310 mg
Magnesium 29.5 mg
Folate 4.92 mcg
Potassium 391 mg
Vitamin A 143 mcg
Vitamin D 104 International Units

6. Peanuts

  • A meta-analysis reported that eating a handful of peanuts every day can reduce the risk of stroke, coronary heart disease, and cardiovascular disease.
  • Peanuts are abundant in fiber, which reduces the risk of stroke by controlling excessive cholesterol.
Table 6. The nutritional values of 100 grams of peanuts
Nutrient Amount
Fiber 10.7 grams
Iron 1.29 mg


What Happens After a Stroke? Signs, Symptoms, Types See Slideshow

What is the importance of a healthy diet for stroke prevention?

Unhealthy eating habits might result in high blood pressure and cholesterol. It can lead to weight gain. These factors enhance your chances of having a stroke.

Good nutrition can do the following:

Consume more healthful meals, preferably home cooked.

What is a stroke?

A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is unexpectedly cut off or decreased due to a clogged artery or a bleeding blood vessel in the brain. The brain cells are deprived of essential oxygen and nutrients, eventually causing brain cell death and damage.

A stroke causes the following:

  • Paralysis
  • Speech issues
  • Problems swallowing
  • Visual and cognitive impairment

Cholesterol is a fatty molecule produced by the body and absorbed from meals. If you have too much cholesterol in your blood, it can cause fatty deposits in the arteries, restricting blood flow. However, eating healthily can help you lower your cholesterol.

Medically Reviewed on 12/29/2022
Image Source: iStock image

Brain food: Can what you eat prevent stroke? https://www.geisinger.org/health-and-wellness/wellness-articles/2018/05/08/13/47/these-brain-foods-could-cut-your-risk-of-stroke

Can These Foods Help Prevent Stroke? https://health.clevelandclinic.org/can-these-foods-help-prevent-stroke/

Spinach, raw. https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/1103136/nutrients