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Digital Subscriptions > Healthy Food Guide > February 2018 > WHY RECOGNISING THAT MINI STROKE can save your life


Each year 46,000 people in the UK suffer a transient ischaemic attack (TIA). Never heard of it? In short, a TIA is a warning that you risk a full-blown stroke. Dr Anupam Bhattacharjee and Professor Caroline Watkins say it’s time we took it seriously

HAVE YOU FELT DIZZY RECENTLY? Or had what you might call a ‘funny turn’? If your episode was in fact a mini stroke – or transient ischaemic attack (TIA) – and you dismissed it at the time, you may be putting yourself at risk of a full-blown stroke in the future. Health charities the Stroke Association and the British Heart Foundation, along with other medical bodies, are keen to raise awareness that it’s dangerous to ignore a mini-stroke. The experience of TV political journalist Andrew Marr, who had two suspected mini strokes in 2012, is a cautionary tale.

In one episode, he said, his mouth ‘just stopped working’ and he felt overwhelming tiredness. The second time he blacked out.

As he was only 53 and kept fit by working out and running, he didn’t associate his symptoms with stroke and didn’t follow them up. But several months later, he suffered a life-changing stroke that has left him with permanent disabilities. The TV personality Chris Tarrant is another celebrity who failed to recognise he was having a TIA on a long-haul flight.

His symptoms were initially dismissed as an asthma attack.

That ‘funny turn’ so often experienced (which is actually a TIA) is a contributory factor for 21% of all strokes.

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About Healthy Food Guide

Find out what really works for weight loss with our portion guide special - and say goodbye to that belly fat. Meet the medical experts now focusing on nutrition, and try our 32 heart-friendly recipes. We show you how to spot or prevent a mini stroke (it could save a life), and take your running to a new level with our complete guide to training for a race. We've also got vegan comfort food covered, plus pancakes and Valentine's treats, and help you look as good on the outside as you feel on the inside, with professional tips for beauty on a budget.