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Posting to Facebook, her good friend Laure Jacobson paid tribute to the American actress. “It is with great sadness that I report the death of our friend, Lisa Loring,” Jacobson stated.
“[Four] days ago she suffered a massive stroke brought on by smoking and high blood pressure.
“She had been on life support for [three] days. Yesterday, her family made the difficult decision to remove it and she passed last night.”
Loring’s daughter, Vanessa Foumberg, confirmed her mother’s passing to Variety.
“She went peacefully with both her daughters holding her hands,” Foumberg said.
As Jacobson highlighted, high blood pressure is one of the main causes of a stroke, which is confirmed by the NHS.
Smoking increases the risk of high blood pressure, the national health service points out.
There are two main types of strokes: ischaemic strokes and haemorrhagic strokes; smoking and high blood pressure is a risk factor for both.
An ischaemic stroke occurs when the arteries narrow, enabling a blood clot to block the passageway of oxygenated blood to the brain.
This narrowing of the arteries, known as atherosclerosis, occurs naturally in older age, but certain factors “dangerously speedy up this process”, such as:
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol levels
- Excessive alcohol intake.
As for a haemorrhagic stroke, this type of stroke occurs when the blood vessel inside the skull bursts and bleeds into and around the brain.
The NHS says: “The main cause of haemorrhagic stroke is high blood pressure, which can weaken the arteries in the brain and make them more likely to split or rupture.”
Factors that can increase the risk of high blood pressure include:
- Being overweight
- Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
- A lack of exercise
The NHS adds: “Haemorrhagic strokes can also be caused by the rupture of a balloon-like expansion of a blood vessel (brain aneurysm) or abnormally formed blood vessels in the brain.”
While you can not eradicate the possibility of a stroke, there are ways to minimise your risk.
To begin with, any smokers would benefit greatly by becoming non-smokers; the National Smokefree Helpline is available on 0300 123 1044 (England only).
Another lifestyle modification is to cut down on how much alcohol you drink as “heavy drinking multiplies the risk of stroke by more than three times”.
People are encouraged to drink no more than 14 units of alcohol per week, which is intended to be spread over three days or more – and not in a single session.
Another dietary tip is to eat a “low-fat, high-fibre diet” that includes plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables.
“Ensuring a balance in your diet is important. Do not eat too much of any single food, particularly foods high in salt and processed foods,” the NHS adds.
Finally, another crucial element to stroke prevention is moving your body. Frequent exercise is key.
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