is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that primarily affects movement due to loss of nerve cells – neurons that produce a chemical messenger in the brain called dopamine (black substance).
‘Diet rich in vitamins C and E may help reduce Parkinson’s disease risk. The protective role of these vitamins may add on a new dimension for treating neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease with dietary supplements.’
Parkinson’s disease is characterized by the gradual onset of mild tremors in just one hand at rest followed by walking and balancing difficulty, memory deterioration, and carrying out other daily activities. It affects over one million people in U.S. and 10 million worldwide.
The study included 43,865 Swedish men and women aged 18-94 years who were followed up for an average of 18 years, from 1997 until 2016, based on their data of health and diet. Among them 465 cases developed Parkinson’s disease.
Intake of vitamins C, E and beta-carotene were assessed. NEAC (total non-enzymatic antioxidant capacity) – a measure of all antioxidants from food and their interactions with each other, was also assessed. Adjustments were made for age, sex, B.M.I., education, smoking, alcohol consumption, and others.
Role of Vitamins in Parkinson’s Disease
It was observed that one-third of the people who had the highest intake of vitamin C or E had a 32% reduced risk for Parkinson’s disease as compared to the one-third of people with the lowest intake.
The other one third of people who consumed both the vitamins together showed a 38% reduced risk of Parkinson’s disease. On the contrary, no significant effects of beta-carotene or the NEAC measure were seen.
However, more research is needed in order to assess the role of different foods and draw definitive conclusions for their use in reducing the risk of Parkinson’s disease.
“Implementation of a diet that includes foods rich in vitamins C and E might help protect against the development of Parkinson’s later in life. In any case, it’s never wrong to implement a healthy diet”, says the lead author, Essi Hantikainen, who was a researcher at the University of Milano-Bicocca.
- Dietary antioxidants and the risk of Parkinson Disease – (https://n.neurology.org/content/early/2021/01/06/WNL.0000000000011373)