It takes a lot to shock someone like Phil McDonald.
The Mollymook based Stroke Foundation ambassador is set for a busy weekend of health promotion activities and a statistic stopped him in his tracks.
"I was horrified to learn that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are 1.5 times more likely to experience a stroke than non-Indigenous Australians," Mr McDonald said.
"I want to be an example for other people. I want to inspire people to take control of their health and become fitter and healthier version of themselves."
He is preparing for the fight of his life as he prepares to step into the ring in Yagoona this weekend.
The Mollymook resident will participate in this weekend's Indigenous All Stars versus the World Boxing Tournament which aims to promote reconciliation.
He hopes to raise awareness about the overrepresentation of stroke in Indigenous Australia.
Phil has been a champion for a stroke since losing his beloved dad James last year. In 2021 Phil broke a world record and raised thousands for the Stroke Foundation by taking on amateur and professional boxers to complete a series of 150 three-minute rounds.
Despite recently turning 60-years-old, Phil is in the shape of his life.
He is now on a mission to educate more people about stroke so they can recognise the signs and reduce their stroke risk.
"When I lost dad, I thought this is not good enough, I've got to do something. I want people to know by making simple changes you can reduce your risk of stroke," he said.
"Blood pressure is the single most modifiable risk factor for stroke, and by drinking more water and keeping active you can lower your blood pressure and in turn, lower your stroke risk."
Data indicates that almost 9000 people across New South Wales will experience a stroke this year.
To find out more information about the Stroke Foundation, visit the website.
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