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Robbinsville, NJ - The American Heart Association and American Stroke Association urges Americans to take action to reduce their personal risk factors for stroke, the No. 5 leading cause of death.

Stroke is a disease that affects the arteries leading to and within the brain and occurs when a blood vessel that carries oxygen and nutrients to the brain is either blocked by a clot or bursts. When that happens, part of the brain cannot get the blood (and oxygen) it needs, so it starts to die.

The American Stroke Association notes that an estimated 80% of strokes may be prevented if people started taking better care of themselves.  This includes making healthy lifestyle choices like eating better and moving more.  While some stroke risk factors can’t be helped, like family history, race or age, most can be modified, treated or controlled, including obesity, smoking, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

Through the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association’s scientific research, the EmPowered To Serve movement and the efforts of passionate volunteers, Americans have better access to resources to prevent heart disease and stroke and are positively impacting health outcomes in their communities for generations and celebrations to come.

EmPOWERED To Serve exists to improve health within multicultural communities. Community can be defined in many ways and EmPOWERED To Serve embraces that. You may consider your extended family, neighborhood, or church your community. It may be your apartment complex, school, or the city or social organizations in which you participate. EmPOWERED To Serve has something for everyone looking to improve their health and make an impact on health within their communities.

We need your help spreading heart disease and stroke awareness to your communities. As a leader in your community, you have the power to shape the future. EmPOWERED To Serve is looking to increase healthy living behaviors, enhance the chain of survival, and expand access to a healthy lifestyle.  For more information please visit www.empoweredtoserve.org.

The American Stroke Association also urges everyone to learn the warning signs of a stroke by remember the simple acronym FAST:

  • Facial Drooping
  • Arm Weakness
  • Speech Difficulty
  • Time to Cal 9-1-1

For more information in either English or Spanish, please visit strokeassociation.org

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