Eating a balanced diet provides people with plenty of nutrients, including vitamins and minerals. Taking certain vitamins, minerals, and other compounds in supplement form may help reduce some symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder that affects the nervous system and the areas of the body that the nerves control. It causes stiffness, difficulties with balance and coordination, and involuntary movements such as shaking.
A number of supplements — including various vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, whey protein powder, and coenzyme Q10 — may help, although more research is necessary to determine their effectiveness. Natural remedies such as dietary measures, dance, and acupuncture may also help.
In this article, find out more about how supplements, diet, and natural remedies may help people manage Parkinson’s disease.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that can help lower levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), which people sometimes call free radicals. ROS are byproducts of certain bodily processes. High levels of ROS can lead to oxidative stress and pose a risk of cell damage and inflammation.
Vitamin C is
Vitamin C is present in many fruits and vegetables, including:
- citrus fruits
- white potatoes
The people with Parkinson’s disease in the case studies noticed an improvement in symptoms when they increased their vitamin C intake. However, there were only two participants.
Research associates vitamin E with improved cognitive performance. Foods rich in vitamin E include:
- sunflower oil and seeds
The authors of a 2019 study concluded that foods containing vitamin E could be beneficial for people with Parkinson’s disease. The conclusions were based on the answers 200 people gave to a questionnaire and an interview. Half the participants had Parkinson’s disease and half did not. The researchers also carried out a mouse study, the results of which appeared to support their findings.
However, the authors of a
Various studies have indicated that omega-3 fatty acids might benefit people with Parkinson’s disease.
According to a
- preventing inflammation
- supporting neuron growth and health
- reducing production of oxidant species
- helping the body process calcium
The author of a
Foods that contain omega-3s
- chia seeds
- oily fish, such as salmon
Vitamin D deficiency is common, and people with Parkinson’s disease have a
The body creates vitamin D during exposure to sunlight, but dietary vitamin D is also essential, and some people may need a supplement.
People with Parkinson’s disease should ask a healthcare professional to check their vitamin D levels. If a person’s vitamin D levels are low or deficient, a healthcare professional can recommend supplementation at an appropriate dose to increase them.
B vitamins are important for memory and coordination.
Dietary sources of vitamin B12
- nutritional yeast
- dairy products
- fortified breakfast cereals
Oily fish, organ meats, and whole grains contain coenzyme Q10, which promotes brain function.
A description of this trial also states that people in a previous trial tolerated coenzyme Q10 well in the early stages of Parkinson’s disease and that it may help slow progressive impairment.
The Parkinson’s Foundation provides some diet tips for people with Parkinson’s disease:
- Eat plenty of whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and foods rich in antioxidants.
- Reduce sugar, salt, sodium, and saturated fat intake.
- Partake in regular physical activity.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine intake, especially before bed.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Take medications with a glass of water.
- Snack on nuts to improve brain health.
- Discuss vitamin D levels with a doctor.
- tai chi
- repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), which uses magnetic pulses to stimulate specific areas of the brain
These strategies appear generally safe for people with Parkinson’s disease, but rTMS is not suitable for people who have a pacemaker or experience seizures.
More research is necessary to learn about the effectiveness of these methods.
Parkinson’s disease is a condition that affects the nervous system.
Some supplements may help reduce symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, including:
- vitamins B, C, D, and E
- omega-3 fatty acids
- whey protein
- coenzyme Q10
Other natural approaches that may be helpful include dance, acupuncture, massage, and tai chi.
However, more research is necessary to determine whether these remedies are beneficial. People should always check with a doctor before trying a new approach. They should also continue with the treatment plan their doctor prescribes for them.