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Functional Medicine And Parkinson’s

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I Wanted Better Than This

Can Functional Medicine Help with Parkinson’s Disease?

Although I was getting worse very slowly I was still noticing it.

That shaking of the hands was very real.

Slowness in my movements had gradually become more noticeable.

And I was developing other classic symptoms.

Sleep problems.

Low moods and anxiety.

My sense of smell started to weaken.

Failure to recall how Id spent yesterday complete loss of recall about my own wedding recognizing faces but not remembering names

We joke about these things and put them down to age.

But when theres a diagnosed condition that is actively robbing you of physical and mental abilities thats no joke at all.

I knew this condition led to physical disability.

I also knew it led to mental disability.

I was scared, to be honest.

Scared to be a burden. Scared to lose my ability to control my own body.

Scared to watch my life deteriorating before my eyes.

Why Jodis Method Works

Remember: standard drug remedies tackle the disease further along the chain at the point where theres a dopamine shortage.

Doctors simply dont address the reason that dopamine is in short supply in the first place.

Jodi does.

She addresses the specific reasons why cells in the substantia nigra are dying off.

Then she addresses low dopamine itself.

Then she undoes the symptoms of the illness the part of the disease that you and I experience.

Jodi Knapp cant teach her methods face-to-face to everyone who needs them. So she created a written version of her approach. Its called The Parkinsons Protocol.

And its The Parkinsons Protocol that changed not only my present life it changed my future life too.

Conversations About Complementary Therapies And Parkinson’s Disease

In this one hour, 15-minute webinar movement disorders specialist Natalia Diaz, MD, talked about how complementary therapies manage symptoms, ease pain, reduce stress and improve quality of life. Nearly half of all people with PD utilize some form of complementary therapy. These therapies are often identified on the internet and frequently not reported to physicians. Treating physicians are sometimes unaware of such treatments, including their rationale, mechanisms, potential efficacy, and possible adverse effects. Dr. Diaz explored in detail the good, the bad, and the ugly sides of complementary therapies and how to talk with your doctor about integrating them into your treatment plan.

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Understanding Parkinsons Disease Through A Functional Medicine Framework

Dr. Ken Sharlin is one of the only functional medicine doctors that is also a neurologist. With this background, Dr. Sharlin aims to uncover the root cause of diseases and disorders like Parkinsons to help patients improve their quality of life without drugs or surgery.

When examining PD through a functional medicine lens, its crucial to understand the concept of Lewy bodies. Composed primarily of the alpha-synuclein, Lewy bodies are aggregates of proteins that accumulate in the brains in those with PD.

Some evidence suggests that PD may start in the gut, where patterns of inflammation trigger the formation of these protein aggregates. These then travel through the vagus nerve to the brain, where they accumulate and destroy the dopamine-producing nerve cells.

This holistic framework for the disease involves other factors, too, such as the minimization of mitochondria , toxin exposure, and hormone imbalances.

Why Do We Get This Illness

Parkinson : BBH Hospital : Functional Medicine : Better Being Hospital

Parkinsons Disease is a degenerative brain illness.

Why does our brain health start to degenerate?

It degenerates due to a loss of nerve cells in a part of the brain called the substantia nigra.

These nerve cells in the substantia nigra manufacture a neurotransmitter called dopamine. But as the nerve cells die off less dopamine is created.

We need dopamine.

The loss of dopamine leads to the loss of body control and leads to a whole cascade of other physical and mental symptoms that combine to steadily ruin a persons life.

Theres a simple, well-understood trail from good health to Parkinsons:

Nerve cells dying off in the substantia nigra > reduced dopamine production > Parkinsons Disease

However, almost all modern-day medical treatments start at step 2 reduced dopamine. Were trying to increase dopamine.

Which sounds sensible at first. But the problem is that were tackling a disease that has already started.

And were not addressing it at the point of its underlying cause.

Its like being in a sinking boat and constantly bailing out the water instead of fixing the leak.

We can bail for so long. And then we sink.

The reason why most people eventually get so ill with this condition is because almost no treatments tackle step 1 the dying of the substantia nigra cells.

Yet doesnt it make sense to address the initial cause of this dreadful condition?

Of course it does.

Ive learnt a lot about this disease..

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Massage Manual Therapies & Alexander Technique

Anecdotally, PD patients have described transient improvement in stiffness and posture after massage therapy. In observational studies of massage for PD, improvement in gait speed as well as subjective selfconfidence and well-being have been described. Similarly, Japanese massage was associated with improvement in gait speed and shoulder range of motion in an observational study of 10 PD patients. Alexander technique uses hand contact to assess and manipulate changes in muscle activity by addressing the relationship between thought and the resultant muscle activity. Stallibrass et al. published the only RCT of massage and Alexander technique in 93 subjects with PD followed with biweekly sessions for 3 months. Compared with a no intervention group, only the Alexander technique participants improved on self-assessment disability scores and depression ratings. More objective motor assessments were not performed. On the other hand, one study that did look at objective motor outcomes was conducted by Craig et al.. They demonstrated that neuromuscular therapy, a technique similar to massage but which relies on direct compression of trigger points, was more effective than relaxation at improving motor UPDRS scores in 36 PD patients over a 4 week intervention period.

S To Making It Happen

Thankfully, Jodis program isnt a long list of donts. Theres no calorie counting, strange potions or weird rituals.

Instead its a fairly short list of powerful, practical, easy-to-implement dos.

Jodi Knapp has broken her program into 12 small habits that you can introduce into your life in order to undo the causes and symptoms of brain degeneration.

Theres no revolution here. I made one simple change, and when I was sure Id got it I went on to the next one.

Stuff so stupidly easy I did wonder with a couple of them how they could possibly have any effect at all.

But this is the thing: it was tiny bad habits that got me so ill in the first place.

So it only requires tiny good ones to undo it all.

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Generally Whats Your Thought Process For Deciding What Treatment Might Be Best For A Patient To Try

It is important to customize treatment to the individual person while honoring the cultural context. I try to get a sense of what is important to the person living with Parkinsons what brings them joy and meaning and then try to address the issues from there.

Every person is different and goals of care can also change depending on what else is happening to the person at the time. For a grandmother living with Parkinsons, the goal may be to play with their grandchild on the floor with their toys.

For a retired older man, it may be playing golf with his buddies. For a younger woman, it may be cooking with her sisters at a holiday meal. Having an honest dialogue about what the patient enjoys from a lifestyle perspective is also key. Prayer may be very accessible for some cultures for others, it may be yoga or tai chi.

How I Treated My Own Brain Deterioration

RHR: A Functional Medicine Approach to Parkinson’s Disease

Everything I did to restore my own brain health I learned from a natural health practitioner called Jodi Knapp.

I discovered Jodi on a local health forum some years ago. She works with people using natural approaches to reverse illnesses which were caused by natural causes.

Which is, in fact, almost every illness known to man.

Her philosophy is simple: disease always has a cause.

If I have pain, a deterioration or some painful or deadly affliction there are reasons why I have it.

It doesnt just happen.

Understand those reasons and we have ways of reversing whats gone wrong.

Jodis incredible success rate at treating allegedly untreatable illness comes from her starting at the illnesses first causes.

Those causes are always natural causes. She tackles them and changes lives.

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Can Functional Medicine Help With Parkinsons Disease

Parkinsons disease inhibits those who bear the disease from living a normal life. Patients who have come to Dr. Goodbinder at the Epigenetics Healing Center were shaking wildly, couldnt play the piano, couldnt pick up their cup right, and couldnt spend time with their friends without feeling embarrassed.

We dont give you drugs that replace what your body is missing. I want your body to produce those things again

For those who have Parkinsons disease, functional medicine can give you your life back. We look at it from a scientific point of view, says Dr. Goodbinder. We dont give you drugs that replace what your body is missing, I want your body to produce those things again and produce the receptors to utilize that. The longer you take these medications, the harder it is to get your functionality back.

If you are have any additional questions about how functional medicine can help with Parkinsons disease, contact the Epigenetics Healing Center. Dr. Goodbinder and his staff will be happy to to get you back on track to living a healthier, happier life.

On The Road To Healing

After receiving an accurate diagnosis, the hard work really began. It would be unfair of us to say that the work of healing is an easy process. However, we can assure you that well be with you every step of the way.

In learning more about Lyme disease after his diagnosis, Tim finally found an explanation for so many of the symptoms he experienced over the previous four years. He also gained confidence in the path forward. With the help of our team and the Adaptation Plus Program, Tim saw improvement with some of his worst symptoms and is continuing to move in a positive direction toward full healing.

The Adaption Plus Program was a huge turning point for his healing journey, and it all started with an accurate diagnosis.

As Tim put it himself:

I wouldnt have made the progress I have without becoming a patient at GrassRoots and am so happy to be on the path to recovery. In addition to regular appointments, I have access to the whole team for updates, questions, medication changes and other resources, tools and guidance. I no longer feel alone on this journey, GrassRoots is with me supporting me every step of the way. Joining the GrassRoots Adaption Plus Program was the best thing I could have done to help with my healing and recovery, and I totally recommend them to anyone who wants to feel better and get to the root cause of their health issues.

Thanks to his hard work, Tim is now well on his way to regaining his active lifestyle!

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Causes & Underlying Factorswith Recommendations

The official cause of Parkinsons disease remains unknown. However, there are many underlying causes and common underlying factors that may be culprits in the development of this disease.

Hormone & Neurotransmitters

Research has uncovered several commonalities in those with Parkinsons that may lead to an eventual understanding of the root cause. One of these is the damage of neurons that produce dopamine, a critical neurotransmitter that controls movements.Another finding is that the nerve endings that produce norepinephrine are also often damaged and can cause some of the other symptoms of Parkinsons disease like digestive issues and fatigue.Lewy bodies are another common feature present in the brains of those with Parkinsons disease. Lewy bodies are clumps of the protein alpha-synuclein. These bodies are actively being studied and are thought to be involved in the degeneration of the nervous system and memory.

There are many medical articles and research papers that show a connection of deficiency of B vitamins in Parkinsons disease. B vitamins are needed for over 300 enzyme reactions in the body and typically reduced with Parkinsons medications. Specifically research on vitamin B1 has suggested to improve non-motor and motor symptoms of Parkinsons Disease.

Taking into account the damage and degeneration to the neurons, nerve endings, nervous system and memory we can conclude the following treatment to be VERY effective!

Near Infrared Light Therapy in Parkinsons

Additional Topic Discussion: Chronic Pain

Getting to the Root of Parkinsons Disease with Functional Medicine ...

Sudden pain is a natural response of the nervous system which helps to demonstrate possible injury. By way of instance, pain signals travel from an injured region through the nerves and spinal cord to the brain. Pain is generally less severe as the injury heals, however, chronic pain is different than the average type of pain. With chronic pain, the human body will continue sending pain signals to the brain, regardless if the injury has healed. Chronic pain can last for several weeks to even several years. Chronic pain can tremendously affect a patients mobility and it can reduce flexibility, strength, and endurance.

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Gut Zoomer For Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

Dr. Alex Jimenez utilizes a series of tests to help evaluate gut health associated with small intestinal bacterial overgrowth . The Vibrant Gut ZoomerTM offers a report that includes dietary recommendations and other natural supplementation like prebiotics, probiotics, and polyphenols. The gut microbiome is mainly found in the large intestine and it has more than 1000 species of bacteria that play a fundamental role in the human body, from shaping the immune system and affecting the metabolism of nutrients to strengthening the intestinal mucosal barrier . It is essential to understand how the number of bacteria that symbiotically live in the human gastrointestinal tract influences gut health because imbalances in the gut microbiome may ultimately lead to gastrointestinal tract symptoms, skin conditions, autoimmune disorders, immune system imbalances, and multiple inflammatory disorders.

In Truth Its Not Magic At All

Of course, the kind of turnaround I experienced here does feel like magic.

Who wouldnt feel like theyve experienced something miraculous when an illness like this does an about-turn?

But everything I learnt from Jodi comes with sparkling scientific credentials.

Its researched knowledge from scientific establishments all over the United States, Europe and the world.

None of this program is controversial. There arent any scientists waiting to debunk any of this.

Because collectively this is their work. Jodi simply turned it into a set of 12 habits that thousands of us have used to treat a nightmare illness.

The only reason its not mainstream the only reason its only thousands of people who benefit from this rather than millions is because it involves some initial effort to take on these habits.

Yet once done its just so easy. And the reward?

Health. Pure and simple.

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How Glutathione Gets You Moving

Over twenty years of research support a link between the death of dopamine-producing neurons and glutathione deficiency. Heres what the research says about glutathione:

  • Glutathione limits free radical production
  • Glutathione is a strong reducing agent, protecting brain cells against oxidative damage
  • Glutathione slows the effects of Parkinsons while improving brain function
  • Without enough glutathione, brain cells are more easily damaged by oxidation and destroyed, and improvement is essentially impossible
  • Using infusion therapy, glutathione is a leading symptom reducer of Parkinsons.

Dr. Lalezar has seen an 80-90% improvement rate among her Parkinsons patients who have undergone IV glutathione therapy.

Natural Medicine And Parkinsons

Increase Dopamine in Parkinson’s Disease Patients using NAC – Functional Nugget #430

If you have Parkinsons disease, you may be scared and confused about what to do next. You might wonder if natural medicine could help. Dr. Shiva Lalezar, a highly regarded holistic doctor in Los Angeles and the medical director of the Health & Vitality Center, has helped many patients with various stages of Parkinsons disease mitigate their symptoms, regain their self-confidence, and live more normal lives.

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Natural Treatments For Parkinsons Disease

Throughout my many years in Practice, I have had the opportunity to work with many patients suffering form neurodegenerative diseases, including those suffering from Parkinsons and this is what I have discovered. The human brain is particularly vulnerable to oxidative stress due to its high metabolic activity. Glucose is the main fuel of the brain, but when glucose is low , the brain can use lactate during exercise and ketone bodies for fuel during glucose depletion. The general reliance on glucose means that the brain uses disproportionately more oxygen than other tissues.

What does this have to do with Parkinsons? Well, when dopamine is made in the brain it is especially prone to oxidation. This is where high dose antioxidant therapy becomes extremely important and beneficial for those suffering from Parkinsons disease. I often incorporate the following vitamins as part of my protocols for treating Parkinsons.

Vitamin C Can be used as an antioxidant to prevent the free radical damage from getting worse and spreading.

Coenzyme Q10 research has found that the level of CoQ10 is substantially lower in the mitochondria of the people with Parkinsons Disease and that a CoQ10 deficiency can increase the risk of dopamine cell death in the substantia nigra region of the brain.

Considerations When Treating Parkinsons

Art Music & Expressive Therapy

Expressive therapies are commonly used as complementary to conventional treatment of PD, although there is little objective data assessing the benefits of these interventions. Active theater combines movements with stimulation of different sensory pathways and emotions, enforcing socialization through the continuous interaction between performers. In one RCT, the effect of three years of theater therapy was found to delay the need to increase dopaminergic therapy when compared with conventional physiotherapy of the same duration. Further investigations are needed to clearly assess the role of specific forms of theater and other expressive therapies in PD.

Based on the existing data, there is sufficient evidence to support the use of music and dance therapy as safe, non-invasive, and inexpensive interventions for patients with PD. Dance therapy, and tango in particular, has demonstrated efficacy in several high quality trials. Compliance with these interventions is thought to be high due to the enjoyability and social aspect of these practices.

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