A stroke occurs when a blood vessel (artery) that supplies blood to the brain bursts or is blocked by a blood clot.
Within minutes, the nerve cells in that area of the brain are damaged, and they may die within a few hours. As a result, the part of the body controlled by the damaged section of the brain cannot function properly.
The effects of a stroke depend on several factors, including the location of the obstruction and how much brain tissue is affected. However, stroke is a leading cause of death and long-term disability.
Stroke and obesity
The risk of having a stroke rises as BMI increases. Fatty tissue causes inflammation, which leads to difficulty in blood flow and an increase risk of blockage, both of which can cause strokes.
People with obesity are also more likely to suffer from sleep apnoea, diabetes, ventricular hypertrophy and high blood pressure. All of these conditions are risk factors for stroke.[i]
For more information on stroke please see the European Stroke Organisation.
[i] Obesity Action Coalition (2015). Obesity and Stroke. Retrieved from: http://www.obesityaction.org/wp-content/uploads/Obesity-and-Stroke-Fact-Sheet.pdf
The effects of a stroke depend on several factors, including the location of the obstruction and how much brain tissue is affected