1. Mucuna Extract
2. B vitamins
3. Fish oil
4. NAC and Glutathione
5. Alpha Lipoic Acid
8. Vitamin D
Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that results in a reduced amount of the neurotransmitter, dopamine. This results in motor symptoms like tremors, difficulty with walking and balance, and stiffness or rigidity. Many people with Parkinson’s Disease may wonder if there is anything they can do to help improve Parkinson’s related symptoms and delay the progression of Parkinson’s Disease.
Nutrition is a critical component in not only the health of all individuals but also in the health of anyone diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. Supplements, in particular, can concentrate vitamins, minerals, anti-inflammatory agents, herbs, amino acids, and other ingredients. Supplements can come in capsules, pills, liquids, powders, tinctures, etc. Although supplements cannot claim to treat or cure Parkinson’s Disease, certain supplements may help with Parkinson’s Disease-related symptoms and may help to improve neurological health. Supplements are not a substitute for a healthy diet but can add to the health of a well-balanced lifestyle.
9 Best Natural Supplements for Parkinson’s Disease
This article discusses what are arguably the 9 best supplements for the treatment of Parkinson’s Disease. It also explores some of the research that supports using these supplements to improve the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease.
(Please note that this article is for information purposes. If you are considering taking supplements for Parkinson’s Disease, please consult with a licensed provider. Some supplements should not be taken when you have certain medical conditions. For your
safety, taking supplements for Parkinson’s Disease is best to be approved by a medical provider.)
Low levels of dopamine cause Parkinson’s Disease. The lack of dopamine causes motor symptoms like tremors, shuffled gait, and stiffness. One aspect of treating Parkinson’s is replenishing dopamine levels in the brain. However, dopamine cannot cross the blood-brain barrier to enter the brain, but its precursor, L-Dopa, can. Therefore many medications that improve Parkinson’s related symptoms contain L-dopa.
Mucuna is an herbal plant that contains naturally occurring L-Dopa. Many supplement companies undergo rigorous procedures to standardize the amount of L-dopa in their supplement capsules.
Taking Mucuna supplements while taking L-dopa-containing medications must be supervised by a licensed medical provider as it can easily overdose on L-Dopa, causing very distressful symptoms. However, with the supervision of a medical professional, Mucuna is a supplement that can help improve Parkinson’s Disease symptoms. (Link to amino acid page of TPP website)
Take a look at this double-blind controlled study on the efficacy of the Mucuna supplement in treating Parkinson’s Disease. The research supports that it is effective in managing the motor symptoms of PD while reducing side effects like Dyskinesia.
Potential Benefits of Mucuna for Parkinson’s Disease:
● Improvement in tremor
● Improvement in walking
● Improvement in balance
● Improvement in rigidity
● Improvement in freezing
● Reduction in dyskinesia side effect of Parkinson’s medications
● Reduction in dystonia side effect of Parkinson’s medication
It is emphasized that taking mucuna with L-dopa-containing Parkinson’s medications can cause an overdose of L-dopa and may be detrimental to your health. If you have Parkinson’s, it is advised only to consider taking mucuna if under the supervision of a medical professional.
B vitamins are necessary for many of the enzymes in your body to function. Enzymes are responsible for cellular functioning and health. In Parkinson’s Disease, the enzymes responsible for making dopamine require B vitamins to function correctly. Therefore concentrated B vitamins as a supplement can be helpful in the production of dopamine, which can help improve Parkinson’s Disease symptoms.
Many Parkinson’s patients taking medications will experience an elevation in levels of homocysteine in the blood. The rise in homocysteine is likely due to a depletion of B vitamins while taking Parkinson’s related medications. B vitamins can aid in the reduction of homocysteine.
This systematic review discussed how B vitamins may improve clinical complications from taking L-Dopa-related medications for Parkinson’s Disease.
Potential Benefits of B-Vitamins for Parkinson’s Disease
● Improvements in mood
● Reduction of homocysteine, a common blood marker elevated in Parkinson’s Disease
● Better production of dopamine, the neurotransmitter responsible for optimal motor symptoms.
● Improvements in motor symptoms.
Fish oil is an excellent supplement to consider for Parkinson’s Disease. The Omega-3 Fatty acids are components of fish oil that are anti-inflammatory and helpful for brain and nervous system health. Evidence supports that fish oil can improve cognition, memory, and blood flow to the brain. Omega 3 fatty acids are a component of nerve cells, and therefore having a healthy supply of Omega 3 fatty acids can improve the health of the nerve cells.
This study on fish oil and nervous system health illustrates the potential benefits of Omega 3 fatty acids and the body’s dopamine system.
Potential Benefits of Fish Oil for Parkinson’s Disease
● Improvements in the health of nerve cells
● Improvements in cognition
● Improvements in memory
● Decrease in inflammation levels
NAC and Glutathione
One of the possible contributing factors to the development of Parkinson’s Disease is environmental toxicities getting into the system and causing damage. N-acetyl cysteine is an amino acid that is the precursor to glutathione. N-acetyl cysteine and glutathione are molecules that serve as antioxidants that help the body detoxify cells and protect the body from cellular damage. Both NAC and glutathione have been used in Parkinson’s Disease to improve detoxification, protect cells from oxidative damage, and increase overall health.
The following article indicates that glutathione plays an important role in detoxification.
The following are potential benefits of glutathione for Parkinson’s Disease
● Improved cellular detoxification
● Potent antioxidant properties
● Cellular protection
● Improvements in overall health
Alpha Lipoic Acid
Alpha Lipoic Acid is a powerful antioxidant that has an affinity for the nervous system. Neurotoxicity occurs when toxins get into the system and cause damage to the function of nerve cells. Alpha lipoic acid has been shown to prevent neurotoxicity and cellular damage.
Neurotoxicity is thought to be one of the contributing factors to the development and progression of Parkinson’s Disease. Using Alpha Lipoic Acid as a supplement for Parkinson’s Disease may aid in protection again neurotoxicity and cellular damage.
Here is a research article that supports Alpha-Lipoic Acid in aiding against neurotoxicity.
The following are potential benefits of ALA for Parkinson’s Disease
● Protects the nerve cells from neurotoxicity.
● Protects the nerve cells from cellular damage.
● Powerful antioxidant to nerve cells.
● Improvements in neurological health.
NAD+ is an abbreviation for Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD). NAD is a coenzyme that is naturally present in the body. Coenzymes function to help activate enzymes in the body. Enzymes are responsible for many operations including DNA repair, mitochondrial health, cellular protection, and improved overall cellular health.
Many enzymes utilize NAD+, which aids in neuronal plasticity and neuronal stress resistance. NAD+ can counteract the neurodegeneration process by improving the neurons’ quality.
NAD+ can be used as a supplement for Parkinson’s Disease because it supports the enzymes involved in maintaining the health of the nervous system.
The following are potential benefits of NAD+ for Parkinson’s Disease
● Improves stress response of neurons.
● May slow down the process of neurodegeneration.
● Can improve cognitive function.
● Improves cell survival.
CoQ10 is also known as ubiquinone. CoQ10 is a nutrient that exists in the body but also can be taken in supplement form. It is found in almost every cell and is a powerful nutrient that helps with a cell’s energy production, or ATP production. It is a powerful antioxidant that helps repair cellular DNA and helps improve other forms of cellular damage.
CoQ10, as a supplement in Parkinson’s Disease, may improve neurons’ energy production and cellular repair. CoQ10 can help improve the strength and ability of those cells to function.
The following are potential benefits of CoQ10 for Parkinson’s Disease
● Improvements in cellular energy or ATP
● Helps repair cellular DNA
● Helps with other forms of cellular damage
Vitamin D is a vitamin that has had extensive amounts of research in the past several years. Vitamin D is not only a nutrient but also a hormone the body makes from a reaction of the sun on the skin. Vitamin D improves bone health and immune system
function. It also reduces cancer growth and inflammation. There is active research on all the processes of Vitamin D. Needless to say, many bodily functions need Vitamin D in a healthy range.
Vitamin D as a supplement may be helpful in Parkinson’s Disease. Vitamin D is essential for brain health and brain activity. Many Parkinson’s patients have lower levels of Vitamin D. There is also evidence to support that Vitamin D aids in nerve growth and protection against neurological nerve damage. Vitamin D deficiency also may contribute to Parkinson’s severity and progression. Here is a research article outlining Vitamin D’s benefits for Parkinson’s.
The following are potential benefits of Vitamin D for Parkinson’s Disease
● Improves brain health and activity.
● Protects against neurological damage.
● May improve PD severity and progression.
● Improves immune system health and reduced inflammation.
Curcumin is the active constituent found in turmeric. Curcumin is a profound antioxidative and anti-inflammatory molecule. It has been researched to be a promising substance to improve many conditions that cause inflammation. Curcumin has been researched to benefit autoimmune diseases, cancer, and neurological disorders.
Curcumin has been studied as a possible supplement to improve the neurological health of those with Parkinson’s Disease. Studies have shown that curcumin may have neuroprotective effects in Parkinson’s Disease. It may protect nerve cells and therefore delay the progression of Parkinson’s.
The following are potential benefits of Curcumin for Parkinson’s Disease
● Reduce Inflammation.
● Protect Nerve Cells.
● Delay the progression of Parkinson’s Disease.
● Antioxidative Properties.
For your convenience, this supplement protocol was created with high quality, 3rd party tested ingredients to ensure the safety and efficacy of its use. This protocol contains 8 of the top 9 supplements for Parkinson’s Disease. It does not contain Mucuna as an overdose of L-Dopa (the active ingredient in mucuna) can cause significant adverse effects. Designed as a foundational plan, these supplements can improve brain health and dopamine production. These products were carefully selected to enhance proper functioning of the nervous system, improve the production of dopamine, and protect the health of the brain.
Safety with Supplements
Supplements can be a very positive addition to someone’s daily routine. However, there can be medical reasons not to take certain supplements. When considering supplements for Parkinson’s Disease, please consult with a qualified healthcare professional to ensure the safety of these products for you.
Parkinson’s Disease is a neurodegenerative condition that causes a decrease in dopamine levels in the body. The reduction in dopamine levels causes motor symptoms like tremors, walking concerns, balance concerns, stiffness, and rigidity. Many supplements can help people that have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. The potential benefits of supplements for Parkinson’s Disease include improvements in motor symptoms, detoxification, protection from neurotoxicity, improved nervous cell health, and delayed progression of the Disease.
For additional information, there are many other Natural treatments for Parkinson’s Disease besides supplements.