Diet a modifiable risk factor for stroke: linking diet and stroke; an Indian perspective

Sandhya Manorenj, Reshma Sultana Shaik


Stroke is the second leading cause of death and disability worldwide. The incidence of stroke in India has increased to hundred percent in past few decades. It was the Framingham heart study trial in 2001 which has first identified the role of dietary habits for prevention of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Majority of secondary prevention strategies for Ischemic stroke are directed towards pharmacotherapy with antiplatelet and statins, while dietary modifications are not projected. However dietary and lifestyle modification can reduce stroke risk by 60%. Hence Diet and nutrition play an active role in prevention of stroke. This review summarizes the dietary intake, dietary patterns and risk of stroke among Indians and provides clinicians with pragmatic guidance to their management. We searched Pub Med, MEDLINE, for articles about diet and stroke in India published in English till May 2021. Diet plays a major role in pathophysiology of stroke. Modification of dietary pattern is the major non pharmacological treatment for the primary and secondary prevention of stroke. Indian traditional diet should be modified according to dietary pattern followed in each region. As a whole reduction of rice consumption, higher protein consumption and lower fat consumption should be encouraged at macronutrient level, while higher intake of fruits and vegetables are advised at micronutrient level. Dietary guidelines should be customized and tailor made based on the regional customs and annual income in various subsections of the society.


Food, Nutrition, Salt, Stroke, Indian cuisines, Traditional diet

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