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Chiropractic Care for Heart Health

Published Date: 
June 1, 2023
Woman's hand holding red heart with ECG baseline.

Visiting a chiropractor is a great way to improve back and neck health. It’s also excellent for overall health. But did you know that it can improve heart health?

Seeking chiropractic treatment to improve cardiovascular health helps you improve existing concerns and can reduce your risk of serious heart problems, including heart attacks.

Can Chiropractic Care Help with Heart Problems?

Yes. Chiropractic care supports a healthy cardiovascular system. It can prevent or reduce the effects of various heart issues, including chest pain, rapid heartbeat, and high blood pressure.

Visiting a chiropractor can help improve heart health in many ways. For example, chiropractic treatment:

  • Improves nerve function of the heart
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Improves blood flow 
  • Decreases inflammation
  • Improves heart rate 
  • Eases chest pain
  • Promotes good lung function

Heart Disease

The term “heart disease” describes a range of conditions that affect the heart, including: 

Congestive Heart Failure

This condition occurs when the heart muscle cannot pump blood as it should. This can cause blood to back up and fluid to build up in the lungs. Symptoms of congestive heart failure include:

  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath 
  • Swelling in the legs and feet
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Exercise intolerance
  • Persistent coughing or wheezing 
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Rapid weight gain from fluid buildup
  • Nausea 
  • Poor appetite
  • Difficulty concentrating 
  • Chest pain when a heart attack causes heart failure

There are several things you can do to reduce your risk of developing congestive heart failure, including:

  • Stop smoking
  • Follow a heart-healthy diet 
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Follow your treatment plan closely if you have heart disease

There is no cure for heart failure. Managing the condition successfully might include:

  • Lifestyle changes
  • Medication
  • Surgery
  • Treating related conditions

Congenital Heart Defects

This condition includes one or more problems with the heart's structure that are present at birth. There are more than two dozen different kinds of heart defects. Symptoms of a congenital heart defect might include:

  • Irregular heartbeat/arrhythmia
  • Blue skin, lips, and fingernails 
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue
  • Swelling of body tissue or organs 

In some cases, symptoms of congenital heart disease aren't noticed until adulthood. They might also return years after treatment.

A happy and healthy middle-aged woman in athletic clothing holding red plastic heart to her chest.

There is no single cause of congenital heart defects. Some are unpreventable, but others are avoidable based on the actions of a mother during pregnancy. Some of the things that increase the risk of congenital heart disease include:

  • Genetics
  • German measles (rubella) during pregnancy
  • Diabetes, including both types 1 and 2 during pregnancy
  • Certain medications, including lithium and isotretinoin
  • Drinking alcohol during pregnancy
  • Smoking during pregnancy


Hypertension is another term for high blood pressure. It occurs when the force of the blood is consistently too high when it’s pushing against the artery walls. When you have high blood pressure, your heart has to work harder to pump blood.

Normal blood pressure is 120/80 mm Hg or lower. Elevated blood pressure occurs when the top number is between 120 to 129 mm Hg but the bottom number is still below 80 mm Hg. Elevated blood pressure is the stage before hypertension.

There are two stages of hypertension:

  • Stage 1: Top number (systolic) between 130 to 139 mm Hg, or bottom number (diastolic) between 80 and 89 mm Hg
  • Stage 2: Top number is 140 mm Hg or higher, or the bottom number is 90 mm Hg or higher

Most people with high blood pressure have no symptoms, but it can cause:

  • Headaches
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nosebleeds

High blood pressure tends to develop over time. It’s often linked to unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as not getting enough regular physical activity. Health conditions like diabetes and obesity also increase someone's risk of developing high blood pressure. 

Sometimes, high blood pressure occurs during pregnancy, even when a woman has normal blood pressure when not pregnant.

High blood pressure can damage your heart, brain, kidneys, and eyes. It makes your arteries less elastic, decreasing blood flow and oxygen to your heart. This increases your risk of heart disease and can cause:

  • Chest pain
  • Heart attack
  • Heart failure

Atherosclerotic Disease

Atherosclerosis occurs when plaque buildup, including fats, cholesterol, and other substances, is on the artery walls. It causes the arteries to narrow, blocking blood flow. If the plaque bursts, it can lead to a blood clot.

Early-stage atherosclerotic disease rarely causes symptoms. Moderate to severe atherosclerosis can produce symptoms including:

  • Chest pain
  • Numbness in the arms or legs
  • Slurred speech
  • Loss of vision
  • Drooping facial muscles
  • Leg pain
  • High blood pressure
  • Kidney failure

Symptoms vary based on which arteries are affected by atherosclerosis.

Benefits of Chiropractic Care for Heart Health

Chiropractic care for heart health provides a variety of benefits. Chiropractic adjustments support a healthy cardiovascular system and can reduce or relieve: 

  • Chest pain
  • Elevated heart rate
  • High blood pressure
  • Risk of heart attack
  • Inflammation

Chiropractic treatments also help with stress and anxiety, which contribute to heart health.

Chiropractor helping senior man with arm stretches.

Chiropractic care focuses on the spine. Located in the spine are two nerves: the sympathetic nerve and the parasympathetic nerve. These nerves accelerate and decelerate your heartbeat. 

Misalignment of or pressure on these nerves can lead to the dysregulation of your heart rate. Over time, these so-called minor disturbances interfere with your brain and spine’s communication (subluxation). This poor communication increases your risk for a variety of health issues, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Migraines
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Kidney disease

Additionally, subluxation affects blood pressure. Chiropractic treatments can improve subluxation, lower blood pressure, and reduce the risk of various heart health issues. 


Chiropractic care is a low-risk, all-natural option for treating heart disease. It can also reduce someone’s risk when they are concerned about heart health issues they’ve inherited. Whether you’re working to lower your blood pressure, recovering from a heart health issue, or just want to improve your heart and overall health, a visit to the chiropractor can help.

Dr. Eric Neumann D.C.

Dr. Eric Neumann grew up in Alberta, Canada where he majored in Chemistry at the University of Calgary. During his time at University, he obtained licensure as a Massage Therapist. It was clear that hands-on healing would be his calling. After suffering multiple sport-related injuries he became interested in Chiropractic. Dr. Neumann graduated from Western States Chiropractic College in 2009. He has since specialized in the treatment and management of acute spinal injuries.

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