It’s estimated that over 1 million people in the United States live with Parkinson’s Disease and more than 10 million people worldwide. The occurrence of the disease parallels the increased usage of glyphosates and genetically modified food. Parkinson’s disease, PD, is the result of a severe decrease of dopamine production by the substantia nigra of the basal ganglia, located in the brain stem. Research shows this is a result of mitochondria and cellular DNA dysfunction.
The symptoms of PD are initially decreased by dosages of oral dopamine. Dopamine replacement is currently considered the preferred treatment of PD. Some patients have increase symptoms with the use of dopamine and others have an increase in a decline of health from supplemental dopamine. Is there another underlying cause of the PD that could be occurring that is being missed or overlooked?
Fig. 1. The prevalence of Parkinson’s disease in the United States
Parkinson’s Disease, PD, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease associated with a decreased production of dopamine, DA, by the substantia nigra, SN, located in the brain stem; and is characterized by tremor, unsteady gait, and weakness. The substantia nigra is the site of dopamine production and metabolism. The regional neuronal cells are highly concentrated in dopamine. A misdirection in the dopamine metabolic pathway can form the dopamine-quinone, DA-Q, which significantly compromises the neurons of the substantia nigra (in the brain stem) region with an intense localized oxidative stress. This causes cellular DNA damage and mitochondrial dysfunction resulting in decreased ATP (the energy currency of life) production leading to the symptoms of Parkinson’s. Collectively, the research shows that an objective treatment of Parkinson’s disease can reduce the presence of the dopamine-quinone and significant oxidation stress through a change to a favorable cellular environment. This in combination with proper dopamine precursors could lead to neuroplasticity (changes in the brain) resulting in regaining dopamine production by the substantia nigra neurons.
The functional medicine treatment for Parkinson ’s disease is always based on stopping the progression of the disease. As the rate of progression is reducing the repair in the fault of the metabolism that leads to the disease process can begin. Finally, to encourage neuron growth and dopamine production based on the principles of neuroplasticity (change in the brain) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (growth factors that signal particular cells to survive, differentiate, or grow.)
‘Tom’ is an 80-year-old professional white male diagnosed one year before PD. He presents with a persistent tremor, weak and unsteady stance and gait. He is concerned by the rapidly progressive changes and is under treatment with medication, levodopa, and carbidopa. When he started taking the medication, one year ago, there was an improvement in his symptoms. This enhancement lasts for a short time and has now turned from improvement to worsening of the symptoms. He is right hand dominant, and the unsteadiness of the right-hand hinders his writing ability. History of impotence.
He takes no other medication and has no known allergies to medication. His blood pressure runs high in office, 179/81, and normal at home, 135/70. Pulse, 60 +/-, is regular and strong at both office and home. Resting respiratory is non-labored with rate 18 breaths per minute.
Physically, ‘Tom’ shows no sign of cognizant decline and is articulate in thought and speech. He has a persistent tremor of both hands, with the right more severe than the left. Right-hand tremor intensifies with deliberate movement. The right-hand grip is weak as is his overall muscular strength. Cardiovascularly is unremarkable. Other than the above description, he is neuro-vascular intact. Abdomen, with bloating and increase tympany (heard if heard if distended with gas), without tenderness. Halitosis (bad breath) is present.
Diet is the Standard American Diet with an aversion to vegetables.‘Tom’ was evaluated by Functional Medicine Nutritionist, who utilizes a specialized bio-feedback device. The Dietician’s evaluation and modification included:• A Paleolithic alkalized diet with therapeutic protein shakes plus digestive enzymes.• Supplements to include N-acetyl Cysteine, Resveratrol, Phenylalanine, Vitamin B’s, RNA/methylation drops (homeopathic) phosphine liquid, glutamine, CoQ10, Vitamin D, and candida supplements.
‘Tom’ treatment began with diet changes, as per the above the diet and supplement recommendations, plus SAMe and zinc carnosine. ‘Tom’s’ treatments included an intravenous vitamin/mineral/amino acid solution followed by glutathione. Hormonal treatment will begin after 1-month of the above treatment.
Within one week of the above treatment, the tremor decreased accompanied by increase strength and steadiness.
At six weeks of treatment, ‘Tom’s’ strength, gait, and stability have dramatically improved. The tremor is rare and unnoticeable. He can write legibly. He does take one tablet of the L-Dopa occasionally yet does not have any adverse reaction. His labs done after 6 weeks showed a remarkable turnaround.
The next steps are to increase regeneration of the SN neurons and dopamine production, as outlined above. “Tom’, his familyand the medical staff were extremely happy with his results so far and looked forward to the future progress.