Parkinson’s Disease – About Nutrition

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Parkinson’s Disease?

 

I first learned about Parkinson’s Disease in 1995. I offered nutrition counseling at our senior center, and a gentleman asked if there was a diet for Parkinson’s disease. I had never heard of PD before, so I said I would do some research and try to help on my next visit.

Nutrition for Parkinson’s

 

In seven years of studying to become an RD, I learned about the importance of nutrition in diabetes, heart disease, Wilson’s disease, cancer, thyroid diseases, kidney failure, hypertension, hepatitis, anemia, Refsum’s disease, xerostomia, and the importance of food-medication interactions … but there had been no mention of diet for Parkinson’s Disease. Now I was determined to learn more. And I did. Protein and levodopa.  Swallowing problems. Motor fluctuations. Slowed stomach emptying. Constipation. It seemed there was no end to nutrition-related concerns.

Parkinson’s Research

 

Therefore, I was much better prepared to discuss diet for Parkinson’s the next time I met with the gentleman. But I was also determined to make the world aware of the nutrition concerns that so often accompany PD. As a result, I’ve conducted a pilot study, written books on PD, contributed to physicians’ manuals on PD, written one of the Rainbow Booklets for the National Parkinson Foundation, as well as a booklet for Teva Pharmaceuticals on tyramine for people using Azilect, and given presentations and seminars at Parkinson symposiums in the US, Canada, England, and Australia. Now, I invite you to join me in the ongoing exploration of nutrients, herbs, and foods and their impact on the health of people with Parkinson’s disease.