What Is the Best Stroke Recovery Diet?

What Is the Best Stroke Recovery Diet?

Adopting a healthy stroke recovery diet can help reduce your stroke risk factors and boost your overall health.

Whether you want to lower your cholesterol or give your brain a little extra boost, we have great options for you to consider.

Disclaimer: Before beginning any diet, it’s important to consult with your doctor first.

Ketogenic Diet

Great if you want: more brain power

The ketogenic diet for stroke recovery is essentially a high fat/low carb diet.

When done correctly, the diet pushes your body into a state of ketosis where ketones are produced during the breakdown of fats in the liver. These ketones have been shown to be a more efficient fuel for the brain and increase brain mitochondria (the powerhouses of your cells).

And brain energy is something we could all use more of!

Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes Diet

Great if you want: to lower your cholesterol or adopt a simple, healthy lifestyle

The Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes diet provides very simple guidelines to help lower cholesterol and promote a healthy lifestyle.

To help lower your cholesterol, the TLC diet suggests having less saturated fats, trans fats, and dietary cholesterol as these are the main cause of high blood cholesterol, a major stroke risk factor.

The TLC guidelines also suggest limiting bad carbs, which include processed carbs like white pasta, biscuits, and bread. It can be difficult giving up so much all at once, so remember to make small incremental changes.

Now, on to the good news.

What does the TLC diet suggest you have more of?

The TLC diet wants you to have more fruits (2-4 servings a day), veggies (3-5 servings a day), and good carbs. What are good carbs? (Yes, there is such a thing!)

They’re the unprocessed carbs that are typically high in fiber and other nutrients. Examples include quinoa, sweet potatoes, and legumes.

By having more of the good stuff and less of the bad stuff, the TLC diet can help stabilize your cholesterol and promote a healthy lifestyle.

Whole Foods Diet

Great if you want: an easy, healthy eating plan

If you don’t want to bother with rules and guidelines, a whole food diet could be your best solution.

A whole food diet essentially promotes the consumption of all foods resembling their original form, and discourages the consumption of processed foods.

What do we mean by original form?

We mean the way things look when they’re fresh picked.

For example, think of a potato. A box of mashed, garlic-infused potatoes doesn’t resemble a potato – and it’s not the best option.

Some roasted red potatoes, on the other hand, resemble their original form – and they’re much better for you than their processed alternatives.

Sure, these are technically rules, but they’re very simple and easy to follow.

Eat things that look like their original form and avoid anything excessively processed.

It’s that simple.

Supplementing Your Diet

Great if you want: to cover all your bases

(Foreword: Supplements can interact with medication, so please be sure to consult with your doctor before adding anything new to your regimen.)

While we recommend getting all your vitamins and minerals from a wide variety of whole foods, sometimes it can be challenging to cover all your bases.

Supplements, then, are a great way to ensure that you’re getting everything your body needs for a healthy recovery. Some of the most important vitamins stroke survivors need are:

  • CoQ10
  • Vitamin B3
  • Vitamin B12

To learn more, refer to our article on the best vitamins for stroke recovery.

And there you have it! Four excellent options to boost stroke recovery and your overall health.

Have you tried any of these diets before?

Do you have any other diets that you recommend?

Share your thoughts and advice with us in the comments section below!

  • Rowena Nichols

    I have never been much in favor of any diet that by definition eliminates a food group that really is a part of good nutrition. The Mediterranean Diet is an exception as is Eat 4 Your Blood Type, but even those I do not accept or follow 100%. I know the value of vitamins and minerals. I know the value of a ‘balanced’ diet. In the presence of most injuries the body needs a little boost to answer specific needs. Prior to my stroke I ate little meat, preferring the intake of protein via milk, cheese and lots of different kinds of nuts. Protein is needed for tissue building and because my stroke resulted in considerable tissue loss in the brain and muscles, I added meat to my diet. The nuts were more difficult to eat. Daily my diet consisted of fresh and frozen foods (vegetables), meat once a day, salads of greens and/or fruit, all prepared in a variety of ways. Fried foods are eliminated but Olive oil is my usual choice on a salad. Not everyone likes the same thing. I do not care for purchased or packaged pastries but I like some sweets. Cake mixes, or cake made from scratch, baked as mini muffins and occasional cookies are sufficient. I’ve not purchased candy for years but I like good chocolate so I eat semi-sweet baking chocolate. It’s dark chocolate and sufficiently sweet. One piece is 1/4 ounce and I rarely eat more than 1 piece a day. That is a daily treat at snack time in the evening. What I personally found most disturbing after my stroke was some beginning weight gain that I soon attributed to the fact that because I spent all day sitting I was not burning the calories (I never counted them) I did before the stroke when I walked 2 1/2 miles every morning before going to work. For me the best solution was to continue with my balanced diet but eat less of it. My weight has stabilized and I have more energy. There may be dieticians who don’t agree with me and that’s OK. This is what works for me and approved by my doctor.