Stroke in young Canadians is on the rise, Heart & Stroke warns. Here’s why

More young Canadians are having strokes, according to a new Heart & Stroke report that’s warning that stroke rates in younger adults are rising faster than seniors.

Stroke rates have crept up 11 per cent in Canadians between 20 and 59 from 2006 to 2015. The increase is tied to a rise in risk factors for stroke: access to more processed foods, a fast-paced, stressful life, sedentary lifestyle and higher rates of diabetes and obesity in young adults.

The trouble is, Canadians don’t think of stroke when it comes to young adults.

“There’s a serious lack of awareness of stroke in anybody younger than 70. The public perception has always been seeing a stroke in someone older but that’s changing and it’s starting to happen younger. It even happens in babies and people don’t understand that,” Dr. Patrice Lindsay, director of stroke at Heart & Stroke, told Global News. She’s also the report’s co-author.

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