Approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease each year. This condition can be difficult to diagnose in the early stages because many of its symptoms are similar to those of normal aging. If your aging loved one has Parkinson’s is exhibiting similar symptoms, he or she may be seeking natural ways to find relief. Naples Parkinson’s care experts have put together a list of holistic treatments that may help.
Bacopa monnieri, also known as brahmi, is an herb that has long been used in Indian remedies, but has recently become popular in America for treating cognitive conditions. Parkinson’s disease affects the brain’s ability to produce dopamine, but Bacopa monnieri may be able to prevent damage to the dopamine system and discourage neural degeneration.
Mucuna pruriens is a plant found in Africa and Asia that contains L-DOPA, which can increase levels of dopamine in the brain. For seniors with Parkinson’s, an increase in dopamine can enhance mood and reduce the risk of cognitive decline.
Green tea has polyphenols, which help protect the dopaminergic neurons in the brain. Dopamine helps muscles move smoothly and efficiently, and drinking 2 or 3 cups of green tea every day may help reduce Parkinson’s symptoms like muscle rigidity and tremors.
Parkinson’s is linked to oxidative damage in the brain, but a substance in turmeric called curcumin can help prevent this damage by disrupting the proteins responsible for causing the disease. Turmeric is usually found as a dry, powdered root and can be mixed in with a seasoning or juice or taken as a capsule. Nutritional experts recommend seniors with Parkinson’s consume 1 to 3 grams of turmeric per day.
Cocoa flavanols are cocoa extracts that are rich in antioxidant compounds. These antioxidants are linked to dopamine production and enhanced cognition, memory, and mood. To alleviate some of their symptoms, seniors with Parkinson’s can eat moderate amounts of dark chocolate, which is loaded with cocoa flavanols.
Some nutritional experts suggest the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil can alleviate mild to moderate depression. Although depression is not usually the primary focus when treating Parkinson’s, it is still a common symptom, and the antidepressant effects of fish oil can enhance your loved one’s quality of life.
For additional information on promoting the health and wellness of a senior loved one with Parkinson’s, reach out to Home Care Assistance. We understand the complex care needs of seniors with this condition, and our caregivers are available 24/7 to provide the support your loved one needs to maintain a high quality of life throughout each stage of the disease. To learn more about the elder care Naples families trust, call one of our experienced Care Managers at (239) 449-4701 today to request a free consultation.