Michelle Williams wants to do more than save souls with her gospel music. She wants to save lives by sharing her family's history with strokes.
"My father had his first stroke in 1994, and then again in 2005," the 35-year-old singer said in an interview with Future of Personal Health. "The stroke in 2005 was devastating. It paralyzed him and left him unable to talk."
Williams has partnered with the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association by being an ambassador in a campaign called Power to End Stroke. The website warns African-Americans that they run a higher risk of having a stroke that any other group within the American population.
Signs to watch for when having a stroke are facial dropping, arm weakness and speech difficulty.
Williams has said in the past that her father's diet and smoking habits increased his risk of of having strokes, but she also watched her grandmother suffer from a stroke in 2006.
While the risk of a stroke can increase in people who have poor nutrition or a family history of strokes, the former Destiny's Child singer also wants to eliminate the stereotypes associated with the medical emergency.
"There are many types and levels of stroke," she said in the interview with Future Personal Health, which reported that she also mentioned "transient ischemic attack, which is a 'mini stroke' that occurs when a blood clot blocks blood flow in the brain. Symptoms often last only a few minutes to a couple of hours."
Williams also cited things people can start doing today to decrease their risk of having a stroke — maintaining physical fitness, limiting salt intake and reducing stress.
"I'm so happy to share what I know to help prevent families from suffering. If a loved one has had a stroke, I'm with you," she said. "I understand."
During an interview with The Christian Post, back in 2014, Williams spoke about the importance of being transparent about her life with her fans.
"At the end of the day, I want people to say 'Michelle always told her truth.' I want to at least be transparent because somebody is going through what I'm going through," Williams said. "There's somebody who does not believe that God will step in and make a way for you, and He honestly will."