Go Red for Women: Young stroke survivor makes healthy lifestyle - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

EYE ON HEALTH

Go Red for Women: Young stroke survivor makes healthy lifestyle changes

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

Ellie Rodriguez has a very personal reason to Go Red for Women.

Ellie Rodriguez says, "At 16, I realized it could happen to anyone doesn't discriminate at all."

Eight years ago Ellie went out to celebrate a friend's birthday. Everything seemed find. She came home and about 4 hours later started to feel dizzy and it seemed like everything was moving.

Ellie says she went to her mom's room and laid down, but woke up five hours later and they knew something was wrong.

Ellie Rodriguez says, "I was still mumbling my words so right away she took me to the E.R."

Doctors said Ellie had a mini stroke. They also found out she had a gene mutation known as MTHFR that can result in clotting.

Ellie Rodriguez says, "In addition to not being able to speak, my right side of my body was numb, my face was tingly, my lips were drooping a little bit."

Ellie was wondering if she would ever lead a normal life again.

Ellie Rodriguez says, "How am I going to overcome this, how am I going to live normally as a teenage girl as a 16-year-old again."

The journey wasn't easy.

Ellie Rodriguez says, "So for the rest of my high school years I struggled with being put on medication due to my stroke that made me gain even more weight."

When it comes to your heart health the CDC says small changes can make a big difference. Those changes include: scheduling a visit with your doctor to talk about heart health, adding exercise to your daily routine, cooking heart-healthy meals at home at least three times each week, taking steps to quit smoking and taking medication as prescribed.

Ellie has made healthy lifestyle changes and is looking out for her heart health.

Ellie Rodriguez says, "It can happen to anyone no matter your age, young or old. That was a big eye opener for me because at 16 I thought mainly elderly people suffered from stroke"

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