Benefits of incorporating more aerobic activity into stroke rehabilitation

After a stroke, the main goal is to get back home and be as independent as possible. To achieve that goal, most stroke rehabilitation centers focus on helping people to regain lost function, such as the inability to use a hand, to speak, to swallow, or to walk. A great deal of effort is put into functional recovery so that the patient can go home safely and adequately perform activities of daily living (ADLs). There is little effort put into aerobic exercise and conditioning in most stroke rehabilitation programs. A recent systematic review and meta-analysis published in the Journal of the American Heart Association (JAHA) found that stroke survivors benefit from aerobic programs similar to those found in cardiac rehabilitation programs. These findings may prompt a closer look at how stroke rehab programs are designed. Aerobic exercise can help achieve goals of stroke rehabilitation Exercise has many known benefits for the body and mind. These include lowering blood pressure and resting heart rate; raising HDL (good) cholesterol levels; lowering triglycerides; increasing the body’s ability to break down clots; improving insulin sensitivity, which helps with diabetes prevention and control; increasing muscle mass; increasing metabolism; improving mood; and lowering anxiety. Many of these benefits can also help prevent another stroke. Another priority for most stroke survivors is the ability to walk or move around. However, research demonstrates that stroke survivors spen...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Exercise and Fitness Hypertension and Stroke Source Type: blogs

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