Flu vaccine can reduce your risk of stroke

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The flu shot is known to reduce the risk of heart attack and hospitalization for people with heart disease.

In a study from the University of Calgary, scientists found the flu vaccine lowers the risk of stroke among adults even if they are not at high risk for stroke.

They evaluated the health records of over four million Albertans over a nine-year period.

The results showed that vaccination against influenza should be strongly recommended for everyone, just like it is for those with heart disease.

Data used in the study comes from the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan. Researchers accounted for several factors including age, anticoagulant use, and risk factors including chronic health conditions.

They found that the risk of stroke was significantly reduced in the six months following influenza vaccination.

The findings suggest broad influenza vaccination may be a viable public health strategy to prevent stroke.

The researchers say two strengths of this study are that the study used data from an entire population over a period of 10 flu seasons, and the study occurred in a province with one single universal healthcare system.

The generalized benefit of influenza vaccination for stroke prevention is a new finding that he hopes will lead to more research about the indirect protective factors of the flu and other vaccines.

The team says upper respiratory infections often precede heart attacks and strokes. Preventing or reducing the severity of influenza provides a protective factor, particularly for stroke.

The protective association can be very strong. It benefits both men and women and there was a clear reduction in the risk of stroke with increasing age for those who had a flu shot.

If you care about stroke, please read studies that diets high in flavonoids could help reduce stroke risk, and MIND diet could slow down cognitive decline after stroke.

For more information about nutrition, please see recent studies about people who have the lowest heart disease and stroke risks,  and cutting 1 gram salt could prevent 9 million heart attack and stroke cases.

The study was conducted by Dr. Michael Hill et al and published in The Lancet Public Health.

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