Well most herbal medicines strike out when subjected to the jaundiced rigour of Evidence-Based Medicine. But there are a few stand-outs. In particular, if I ever get lung cancer or perhaps others, I will start furiously googling "Pan-Asian medicine plus vitamins". One legit appearing study showed impressive results.
Dark chocolate has lots of promising antioxidant phytochemicals that chocolate-loving researchers love to tout and chocolate-loving NIH staffers love to fund. Fortunately, some compelling clinical data point to slight benefits on blood pressure, blood sugar, and weight. I am a fair trade 80-85% cacao junkie myself.
The more of these you did the lower your death rate: * don't smoke, * maintain a healthy weight, * healthy diet, * regular exercise. What is newish here is that they also found the coronary calcium score correlated with death as well. This is a test you can choose to pay for, as a measure of the plaque in the arteries around the heart. Mounting evidence suggests it can be predictive of your risk for heart disease and death. Of course, a simpler test is to ask yourself how well you are doing with respect to the 4 behaviors above.
If you are Japanese and have congestive heart failure (CHF) then walk more than 4,889 steps per day or die!! Well no. Actually you face 2.28 times the risk of death if you are in the group who takes that many steps or less. We can postulate that exercise might reduce death in CHF patients, and it might benefit the rest of us.
Study of American women - "Only 9.9% of women who reported eating a healthy diet met minimum fruit and vegetable recommendations; 39.7% of women who reported regular physical activity met the minimum recommendation."
People with higher levels of polyphenol in their urine had 30% lower death rate. So add some polyphenols to your urine! You could grind them up and just add to the toilet for lots of healthy toilet goodness. Well assuming there might be an ounce of causation in this relationship, maybe your best strategy is to eat some polyphenols so they end up in your urine. "From whence" you query? Berries, artichokes, coffee, flax meal, dark chocolate, tea, apples.
We are familiar with elevated blood pressure being a risk factor for heart disease and stroke and death. But what about the heart rate (number of beats per minute)? It turns out this too is a predictor of cardiovascular disease when elevated. For each increase of resting heart rate of 10 beats per minute, the investigators observed an 11% increase in mortality.