My boyfriend is reading Bismark: The Man and the Statesman by A.J.P. Taylor and pointed out a pretty interesting passage relating to Bismark's life that I was never aware of. Apparently after decades of obesity and health problems including nervous ticks and irritability, starting in 1883 Bismark underwent a total transformation in his health that corresponded to a new doctor who advised he eat a diet consisting almost entirely of Herring. Taylor claims this resulted in Bismark shedding 56 points, curing his sleep problem, clearing his eyes, and doing wonders for his skin. In an interesting note of how history repeats itself, the man who put him on this diet, a Dr. Schweninger, wasn't particularly well thought of among the German medical establishment. Bismark used his inflluence to force the University of Berlin to give him a professorship despite their protests.
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