Treating Parkinson’s Disease With Diet

caffeine consumption both in Asian and Western populations appears to protect against the development of Parkinson’s disease but what if you already have it a new study found that giving folks the equivalent of about two cups of coffee a day worth of caffeine significantly improve symptoms of the disease of course it’s only so much you can charge for coffee so drug companies took caffeine and added a side group so they could patent it into new drugs which appear to work no better than plain caffeine which is dramatically cheaper and probably safer similarly other plant foods such as berries may be protective and plant-based diets in general may help prevent Parkinson’s animal fat and dairy may increase risk whereas a plant-based diet Airy pattern may protect against Parkinson’s disease we don’t know if it’s the animal fat per se though it could be the animal protein that’s increasing risk maybe it’s the dairy mercury and fish the blood based heme iron or less of the protective antioxidants and plant foods and plant-based diets and we didn’t know until recently there have been successful cases like this one in which a dietitian was struck down with Parkinson’s and she was able to clear most of her symptoms with a plant-based diet rich in strawberries whole wheat and brown rice rich sources of these two phytonutrients there hasn’t been a formal interventional trial published until now at its root Parkinson’s is a dopamine deficiency disease because of a die-off of dopin a dopamine generating cells in the brain these cells make dopamine from l-dopa derive from certain amino acids in our diet but and just like we saw with the serotonin story the consumption of animal protein may block the transport of l-dopa into the brain crowding it out so at first researchers tried what’s called a protein redistribution diet let’s you know basically only let people eat meat for supper so that patients are hopefully sleeping by the time the negative effects kick in but researchers didn’t consider cutting out animal products altogether until it was discovered that fiber consumption naturally boosts l-dopa levels so hey a plant-based diet particularly in its vegan variant is expected to raised levodopa bioavailability and bring some advantages in the management of Parkinson’s disease through two mechanisms a reduced protein intake and an increased fiber intake that’s why plant protein works best because that’s where fiber is found so they put people on a strictly vegan diet keeping beans towards the end of the day and indeed found a significant improvement in symptoms you

William Babineau

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