Heart disease is one of the most widespread and complicated health challenges in the United States and around the world. Cardiovascular disease — disorders of the heart and blood vessels — accounted for more than 860,000 (about one in three) deaths in the United States in 2017, according to the American Heart Association.
In most cases, heart disease is preventable when people adopt a healthy lifestyle, which includes not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, controlling blood sugar and cholesterol, treating high blood pressure, getting at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity a week, and getting regular checkups.
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According to the case study, a 54-year-old man undergoing chiropractic care experienced normalization of his lipid panel following six months of chiropractic adjustments. Fascinatingly, no other interventions (i.e., diet or exercise modifications) were implemented within this time period.
The patient first came into the chiropractor’s office with a chief complaint of high cholesterol and was taking more than 10 medications to manage his condition. With a past history of heart attack and angioplasty, he was considered “high risk.” One month prior to initiating chiropractic care, he had a lipid panel drawn indicating abnormal levels of cholesterol, LDL, HDL, and triglycerides. According to an interview with the patient on YouTube, he heard that chiropractic could help lower cholesterol and gave it a try because he wanted to get off of his prescription meds.
According to Dr. Nate Blume, the attending chiropractor, “Research is revealing that minor disturbances to spinal alignment and function may be a factor in a number of disorders. These spinal disturbances lead to nerve interference and can result in a host of disorders because the body’s homeostatic mechanism is thrown off.” “It makes a lot of sense when you think about it,” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor, public health researcher, and editor of the journal that published the study. “If you damage or compress or otherwise interfere with the neurological structures in the spine this can have far-reaching implications on the functioning of the body. Through research reports like this, we are finding that correcting the misalignments or abnormal motion associated with these spinal problems reduces the nerve interference and people experience improvement. In this study, it was a man who had risk factors for cardiovascular disease.”
DARK CHOCOLATE MAY HELP PREVENT HEART DISEASE AND LOWER THE RISK OF STROKE
A systematic review found that eating chocolate once per week was associated with an 8 percent lower risk of blocked arteries.
The Treat May Improve Cognition, Prevent Memory Loss, and Boost Your Mood
No, it’s not your imagination — studies show that consuming dark chocolate with high percentages of cacao, such as 70 percent, may benefit your brain
Dark Chocolate Could Improve Blood Sugar Levels, and Reduce the Risk of Developing Diabetes
Eating chocolate every day doesn’t sound like the best way to prevent diabetes, but studies have shown healthy amounts of dark chocolate rich in cacao could actually improve how the body metabolizes glucose when eaten as part of a healthy diet.
Chocolate Is Good for Your Gut and May Help With Weight Loss
Neuroscientist Will Clower, PhD, wrote a book on the subject called Eat Chocolate, Lose Weight, which describes how eating a bit of dark chocolate before or after meals triggers hormones that signal to the brain you’re full.
It Fights Free Radicals and May Play a Role in Cancer Prevention
Evidence that dark chocolate possesses properties that could help protect against certain types of cancer is limited but growing. Antioxidants protect our cells from damage caused by free radicals, which are unstable oxygen molecules thought to be responsible for aging and disease, per previous research.
It’s Good for Your Skin (in More Ways Than One)
The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health lists vitamins and minerals dark chocolate is packed full of — like copper, iron, magnesium, and manganese, to name a few — that are also beneficial to your skin. Manganese, for example, supports the production of collagen, a protein that helps keep skin looking young and healthy.
Dark Chocolate May Send Good Cholesterol up, Bad Cholesterol Down
Dark chocolate is also touted as a cholesterol-lowering food, which explains why, in a study published in November 2017 in the Journal of the American Heart Association, a handful of almonds, dark chocolate, and unsweetened cocoa showed a significant drop in overweight and obese participants’ low-density lipoproteins (LDL), also known as “bad” cholesterol.
Dark Chocolate Is Nutritious — and Delicious!
On top of all the other potential benefits, one thing is for sure: Dark chocolate contains a ton of nutrients. Of course, the darker the chocolate the better, but any 70 percent dark chocolate or higher contains antioxidants, fiber, potassium, calcium, copper, and magnesium.