Category Archives: Parkinsons Disease Treatment

Support for Healing Parkinson’s

Question:

Hello, I am so happy to have received the link to this website..VERY INSPIRATIONAL!!
I am an Energy Practitioner and Motivational Coach. I am presently working with 2 clients who have been diagnosed with PD.

My 1st client, after 3 years since diagnosed, he has been doing incredible work/ inner work on himself and is transforming and shifting to a higher level of consciousness, awareness and spirituality- which is bringing him much trust, faith and hope in his recovery. His attitude is very Positive and he is feeling GOOD more than not!!! NO DRUGS!!! HE IS RECOVERING!!

On the other hand, my second client , also has been about 3 years since diagnosed.. still very depressed and closed to any new thing that I bring to him to help his attitude to guide him in the right direction of his recovery. I have directed him to this website, the blog etc.. He refuses.. but every week I continue to see him to do energy work, massage and coaching.

There are times that he gets very inspired and makes a couple of steps forward, but the majority of the time, he goes backwards. He is not getting any support or encouragement from his family- and lives in a very stressful household. I am getting frustrated as a practitioner but know only too well that everyone chooses to either heal or not.. It is in their own time and I can not force anything..

Do I continue with my therapy?? I have been working with him now for about 1 1/2 years. He said that he was going to give himself til November 2008, with doing alternative work before he chooses medication.

His family wants him to go on medication, he really does not want to go on medication but does not want to do the work that will get him on the path to recovery. It is a catch 22- He does not feel good, there fore he does not have the energy or motivation to do the work- but not understanding that if he does the work (yes- will be hard at first) but by continuing, he will feel better. He eats well and takes all of the supplements that is suggested but not moving his body and has become VERY STIFF AND SORE- CAN NOT MOVE.

Can you offer to me any words of advise or encouragement or support for me. If the only thing that I can do at this time is just to be there for support for him, than that is what I will continue to do, but it is frustrating watching this 36 year old man going down hill when he does not have to be. He wants to see PROOF.. Like I said, I have directed him to this website for proof… but he is not looking…thank you so much for your time in reading my blog…

Response

Warm congratulations to the one client of yours who is feeling so much better. He is clearly on the path of recovery. It is a bumpy ride, so having you there will make all the difference in the world. 

Your deep concern of course lies with your second client who is getting worse. Your question is : how do I help him? Your experience is very similar to my experience. Some people are deeply committed to heal and are willing to experiment until they find what approaches work for them. They do get better. I can assure you and your clients that there are many people on the path to recovery.

The second person would prefer to have someone fix them, to make the symptoms magically vanish.  I don’t blame them one bit.  When I have an ache – I feel the same way.  Of course – no such “cure” exists with Parkinson’s, yet many people prefer to believe it will happen to them.

There are many very deep, unconscious reasons why your second client will not do anything to help himself.  On the most basic level he does not have the energy to do anything but see you. A nutritional IV can help persons in such situations. A nutritional IV is a direct infusion of essential vitamins and minerals directly into the body. It is not a chelation. It is mainstreaming food the body is not getting. Some naturopaths and  some medical doctors specialize in nutritional IV’s. It helps people get back on their feet and  give a much needed burst of energy. 

Second, I would recommend you suggest to him that the reasons for his symptoms may in part lie in the area of toxins. There are many gentle ways to detox the body. It sounds like to me he is not ready to address any of the stress or trauma which sounds like is a key reason for the symptoms from your description. He may be open to doing a little detox work. 

Third, some people – and he may be one of them – take on a condition from another family member out of love. Sometimes it is a parent or a grandparent. Sometimes it is a brother  or sister. It depends. This is an unconscious entrapment into disease (his happens  to be Parkinson’s). This is a larger  family system issue that keeps people sick until they address the issue. He is unlikely to go there now, but maybe later. 

Fourth, when people are stuck like him, there is a very conterintuitive suggestion to make. Give him a mantra to say three times a day for a week. The mantra is

I refuse to get better.  I like my life just the way it is.
                                The answer is no. 

If he can connect that that place within himself  that refuses to heal, he may be able to move out of his stuckness. We all get stuck sometimes.

Why might he not want to heal? There may be negative pleasure in having the debilitating symptoms. This too is unconscious. He is not doing anything about his situation  because having the disease gives him something. The condition defines his role in his family and the roles of all the other family members.   If he gets better, it puts all of that delicate balance out of whack.

The point here is to make explicit his moment to moment choice to feel worse and worse.   You can talk about all the things that will happen like nursing homes and wheel chairs so the truth is spoken out loud. We all make choices in our lives. Maybe the truth of the matter is that his true (though unconscious) choice is to check out of living and die.   

Having said all of this, I think in the end your job is to honor whatever choice he makes. Who is to judge that his choices are not the best for him, whatever they may be? When you ask what you can do for him, I would suggest you now put this back on him.

Ask him what he needs from you. Then give it to him in a loving way – honoring whatever choices he makes.  You can facilitate his journey on whatever path he choices to take. Somethimes the most loving thing to do for a client is to honor their choice to get worse.

Keep up the wonderful work. Know in your heart that you are the perfect healer for him at this time in his life. 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

© 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

What Therapies Do Not Help Relieve the Symptoms of Parkinson’s?

I had a fascinating interview
with Dr. John Coleman, ND,
this week. John was diagnosed
with Parkinson’s in 1995, but
after experimenting and trying
a wide variety of healing modalities
he is symptom free today.

I was curious about what
approaches and therapies John
tried – and he experimented with
many modalities – that did
not work for him. Here was
my question:

Robert Rodgers: “Which therapies
and approaches did not help relieve
your symptoms? 

John Coleman: “There were a lot.
In general, any form of body work
that was firm or hard. Deep
tissue massage, sports massage –
those sorts of massages – created
extra pain. Vigorous therapies
like chiropractic and other
manipulative therapies also
tended to increase my
symptoms and create pain.”

“Excessive intake of nutritional
supplements tended to have no
effect or make me nauseous or
simply be a waste of money. I
had to be very careful about
homeopathic remedies because
the normal approach in selecting
potencies and frequencies seemed
to aggravate me where a very
gentle, a very cautious approached
worked.”

“Many counseling modalities helped.
Psychiatry did not. I am sure there
are good psychiatrists out there,
but I saw four and none of them
helped me at all. Antidepressant
therapy did not work.”

“I choose not to take pharmaceuticals,
but other forms of herbal, vitamin
homeopathic remedies for depression,
but I realized I actually was not
depressed. I was certainly anxious,
but the antidepressant therapies were
just no good for me.

“I needed to be active and proactive
in my approach. In general, anything
that was too hard, too vigorous, too
enthusiastic didn’t work, and gentle,
cautious, loving therapies worked.”

John offers a powerful 12 Step
Parkinsons Recovery Program
that is designed for anyone with
Parkinson’s who is looking for 
ways to get relief from their
symptoms. 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

© 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

I am currently on a regimen of Staleevo, Azilect and CoQ10. Are There any Supplements I should Take to Reverse Symptoms?

Question:

I am currently on a regimen of Staleevo, Azilect and CoQ10.
My major problems are balance, muscle weakness (mostly left sided),
worsening manual dexterity and some cognitive deterioration
(including short-term memory problems).

Are there any supplements to add or anything else I should be
doing to help slow progression or reverse symptoms?

Response

There are four parts to my response. 

  • When you take more than two prescription
    medications and/or supplements there is always
    the chance of a drug/supplement interaction. 
  • Supplements may not help people with
    Parkinson’s because their digestive systems
    do not work properly.  
  • An alternative to taking supplements
    is to have a nutritional IV. This therapy
    involves infusing vitamins and minerals 
    directly into the blood stream, by passing the
    digestive system altogether.
  • Pay very close attention to what you eat.
    What we put into our bodies has a much more significant 
    impact on how we feel than anything else we can do.

Every one’s situation is unique. I may have a deficiency in
magnesium today. You may have a deficiency in calcium.
The critical issue turns on how you can determine what
your body needs, not what my body needs.  

One alternative that works for some people is to ask your
doctor to run a set of lab tests to determine if any
deficiencies exist.  You will then have an idea of what foods to
eat and what supplements you should be taking.

The downside of this alternative is that it is very expensive
and the results are only applicable for the present. Needs of your
body are always changing, so what your body needs today may
shift by tomorrow. Our bodies are in a constant flux
of change.

A second alternative is to give your body the
basic vitamins and minerals that it needs to
maintain balance and vitality. It is a good idea
to take a multi-vitamin supplement as we age. 
There are also super anti-oxidants foods and
vitamins that help the body maintain 
hormonal balance (e.g.: vitamin B6, B12, folic acid,
amino acids, fish oil, etc.).

I am writing extensively about the benefits of specific 
vitamins and minerals for people that have the symptoms
of Parkinson’s in the Parkinsons Recovery Newsletter.
Keep you eyes posted for updates. Keep in mind that 
I am not a medical doctor -I am a researcher – and
therefore thus I am not qualified to offer advice 
about what you should or should not take. 

The downside of a decision to take supplements that
one expert or another suggests is this: There may be
adverse reactions with the supplements and the prescription
medications that you are taking. It is not necessarily a good
idea to pour one supplement after another into your body without
taking into consideration the consequences.   

When you take more than two prescription
medications and/or supplements the possibility
of an adverse interaction always exists.  

I believe that one of the best choices a person can make
who takes more than one prescription medication is to have a
comprehensive nutritional consultation. This is what
is done  for everyone who enrolls in our Jump Start to
Wellness Program.
 Our nutritional consultations are
done over the phone by Randy Mentzer, a licensed
pharmacist in Washington and a certified clinical 
nutritionist.  

My experience is that people with Parkinsons often feel lousy
because their medications are working against one another.
Randy does a comprehensive review of your medical history
and offers a set of individualized recommendations
that you can take to your doctor for further review and
discussion.  

I personally do not have any idea if there are any
contraindications from the medications and supplements
you listed in your question. Randy helps out our clients
with all such questions. 

Randy tells me that there is a good chance of problems
if a person takes two prescription medications. He also
tells me that there is a 100% chance of adverse
interactions if you take five or more medications. Be sure to
listen to my interview with him at Jump Start

I believe that a good step to take on the road to recovery
is to request a thorough investigation of any potential
interactions that may be coexistent with the medications
and supplements you currently take. 

Ask a certified clinical nutritionist for a full evaluation. 
They are the health care providers who know about drug
interactions and are in a position to recommend good
alternatives if problems with interactions are identified.

Any prescription drug may be perfectly safe and useful when
used alone. But when combined with a second
drug, the same drug can create horrible problems for a person.
Randy often has to do additional research to understand
the implications of combining certain medications together. 

So, let’s say that you have checked out the medications that
you are currently taking and have resolved any issues and
problems that have been identified. Perhaps you reduced 
doses or switched medications at the recommendation of
your doctor. Or, perhaps what you are taking now is
not creating any problems.

You now decide to bite the bullet and take a group  
vitamins and supplements that one expert or another
says should offer you relief from the symptoms of Parkinson’s.
You spend $300. You take the supplements for a month. 

To your grave disappointment, there is no improvement. 
You don’t feel worse but you certainly do not feel any better.

What is happening here? Might you just as well have 
poured the $300 down your kitchen sink? The answer to
this question may be yes!  

Supplements often do not help people with
Parkinson’s because their digestive systems
are shut down.

I of course have no idea if digestion is a problem for you.
You do not mention digestion as a problem in your list
of symptoms. I do know that digestion is a problem for many
people as they age and for many people with Parkinson’s. 

For example, when we eat wheat, the walls
of our intestines gradually become crusty with a
cement like paste. Nutrients pass through the
entire digestive track without being absorbed. 
They are discharged from the body in tack –
literally.

A second step on the road to recovery is thus to take
an assessment of any digestive blockages you might have. 
Excellent alternatives exist on ways to detox and
clean out your digestive system.

Naturopaths are skilled at being able to help you detox
your digestive system. Colon Therapists are trained
to clear out the debris and pathogens that may have
been residing in your colon since you were 12 (or 20
or 30 or…). There are nationally certified programs that
train people to do a colon cleansing safely and effectively.    

Depending on the therapy you choose, it can potentially
take months to get your digestive system back on track. 
What do you do in the meantime? How do you help yourself
feel better now? 

An alternative is to by pass the digestive
system altogether by having a doctor or
naturopath administer nutritional IV’s.
This therapy involves the infusion of
vitamins and minerals directly into the
blood stream through an IV. 

With Nutritional IV’s you are mainlining the nutrients
directly into the blood stream. The digestive system is
by passed, so it does not matter if it is not working
properly. Nutritional IV’s should be done only to jump
start the systems in your body so that you can
begin to feel better quickly. The idea is to get your
body back on track so it can do the work it knows how to do
so well: Keep your hormones in balance and your spirits high. 

 Do not plan to receive nutritional IV’s for long. They are
simply a way to help you feel better quickly so that
you have the energy needed to heal.    

There are many experienced and highly qualified doctors 
(MD’s and naturopaths) who administer nutritional IV’s
to patients. If you choose this path it is important to find someone
who is certified, experienced and equipped to adminster 
nutritional IV’s in a sterilized environment. We have a link
on our Parkinsons Recovery website to the naturopath we
recommend to people living in Olympia.

What we put into our bodies has a more significant 
impact on how we feel than anything else we can do
for ourselves

My final comment in response to your question is perhaps the most
important. The one single thing you can do to feel better is to
maintain vigilance on what you eat and drink. What we eat
has everything to do with how we feel.

In my workshops I sometimes draw a large circle on a
flip chart. The circle represents the sum total of everything
you can do for yourself to feel better (exercise, laughter,
mind challenges, stress and trauma release, etc.).  I then
put a dot inside the circle. The dot represents the 
contribution supplements typically make to helping people
get relief from their symptoms. 

The far more significant factor is the food we put into out bodies.
Good nutrition consumes a huge chunk of this circle. 
All things considered, the best thing you can do for yourself 
to get relief from the symptoms of Parkinson’s is to be mindful 
of what you put into your body. 

Eat well and I promise that you will feel better soon. 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

A Natural Treatment for Depression and Fatigue

Question:

I am depressed and tired all the time. What can I do about it? 

Response 

More and more scientists and looking at inflammation
as a contributing factor to many chronic conditions. In the
case of Parkinson’s, it makes logical sense to speculate
that neural networks function poorly when the tissues
connected with the neurons are swollen. 

Think about how you feel when you eat too much. 
I personally feel bloated, sluggish, blocked and immobile. 
All I can do until some of the food is digested is to sit up
straight and pray I do not have to move for a while.
Meditation is a choice, but I usually fall asleep. 

This is precisely how neurons feel when they become
swollen. Give your neurons a break. They have feelings
themselves you know. There is not enough room for
the neural networks to function when the tissues are
swollen. Electrical pathways become obstructed.   

The distribution of hormones to your muscles
and tissues also becomes difficult when inflammation
is present. The tissues throughout your your body
are busy handling another emergency.
They have little space to receive the sweetness
of any uninvited hormonal visitations. 

It is like seeing two friends having a huge fight. They are both
furious at one another. As their friend who is witness to the fight
you try to squeeze in a word or two, but your friends ignore you. 
They are too preoccupied with their own fight. In a similar fashion,
hormones have difficult squeezing themselves into tissues that
are inflamed. 

When all of the healthy cells function at their peak levels,
you will feel better and find relief from the symptoms of
Parkinson’s. Conversely, you will certainly feel worse
when the tissues in your body are inflamed. Depression 
creeps in. Fatigue becomes a way of life. 

OK. Inflammation causes problems. What can I do
about it? When I exercise for a long time the tissues
in my body become inflamed. I often take one ibuprofen.
It reduces the inflammation in several hours, but 
taking ibuprofen imposes a potentially life threatening
challenge to the kidneys. So ibuprofen is not a long
term solution. 

Consider another possibility. Perhaps the
tissues in your body have always been inflamed. 
Since you do not know any other way to feel,
you have become used to feeling lousy.
It is the only way you have ever known.

Why then are the tissues in your body always
inflamed? You may be allergic to a certain food
(or foods) that you love to eat.  A hidden source 
of inflammation for most people is allergic 
reactions to something they put into their bodies. 

How do you know if you are allergic to any foods.
And, if you are allergic, how do your figure out which
foods they might be? 

It is very easy to know. Stop eating the foods you
suspect that may be causing the inflammation
for two weeks. See if you feel better. This sounds
easy, but it is anything but easy. Let me explain why.  

Lets consider one food by way of example: ice cream. 
I love eating ice cream myself. Here is my conversation
with myself (and I am not making this up). 

“Maybe the inflammation is being cause by eating 
ice cream. Oh, I think not. After all, when I eat
ice cream I do not get sick. I do not have rashes.
I do not have stomach aches. I do not sweat or
puke or turn purple. It it must not be ice cream.” 

Being the logical person that I am, I continue eating
ice cream. I stop eating turnips instead to see if turnips
might be the problem. They are not. All is well. I still get
to eat the ice cream.

There is a double twist to my logic. My body has
become acclimated to processing and digesting
ice cream. If you also love to eat ice cream, you
have probably liked eating ice cream since you
were a child.  As an incredibly cleaver living entity,
the body quickly learns how to turn on systems
that reduce the allergic reactions to ice cream. 
In other words, the true symptoms are masked when
we eat ice cream regularly.   

You thus conclude “I do not feel that bad when
I eat ice cream.”

In one sense this is true. In another sense you
would be feeling so much better if you stopped
eating ice cream and started eating healthy
substitutes.  

Because you have always eaten ice cream
your entire life, the truth is that you have 
actually always felt lousy. You just did not
know it. It is the only way you have ever 
felt – lousy. 

Ever heard yourself say,

“I seem to be so depressed all the time.”

“I drag every day of the week.” 

There it is.

Because you become acclimated to feeling tired
and depressed, you forget what it is like to feel
good. The only way to know if a food is causing 
fatigue, inducing depression and entangling neural
networks is to stop eating that particular food for
at least two weeks. In my example, the test is to
stop eating ice cream for two weeks. 

Then, eat a lot of ice cream one day. 
Indulge yourself. Reward yourself for doing 
the test. Eat a quart or two of your
favorite ice cream. Make it three. Then see
how you feel. If  you notice a flare up of
fatigue and depression after eating the ice
cream you can almost certainly conclude
that ice cream is causing inflammation
in your body. 

I report this truth with such detachment
as if it has never happened to me. But it
has and it did. My naturopath muscle tested
me for various food items and suspected
that I had allergies to dairy. I love eating
cheese. I love chocolate milkshakes. 

“I am OK when I eat these foods.
I love them. That can not be the problem.”

Did I stop eating milkshakes for two weeks?
Of course not. I convinced myself that I was
actually very healthy and that I deserved
a little pleasure in my life.

After fighting this battle for years, I finally
did the gold standard test for allergies.
I did not drink milk shakes for two weeks straight.
The anticipation of being able to have a milk shake
became more and more intense with each passing
day until day 15 arrived when I ate two milk shakes,
one chocolate and one vanilla. They were
thoroughly yummy as always.

I paid a dear price for those few minutes of bliss. 
I became seriously depressed for several days. The fatigue
was overwhelming. I really just wanted to sleep and
forget about working or playing. I was miserable. 

The truth is that I did not realize how tired and depressed
the ice cream was making me until I gave my body a chance
to detox itself from dairy. After 14 days of not eating ice cream
the inflammation that was literally always present
in my tissues had subsided.

My experiment was a success. When I added back into
my body the dairy, my body told me in no uncertain
terms that it could not tolerate dairy. I now know this is
why I had constant ear aches as a child. 

Of course I did not like the outcome, but excellent
substitutes for dairy do exist.

If you have Parkinson’s you need energy to feel better.  
It is hard to do the things that will make you feel better
if you are depressed or if you are tired all the time. 
It is thus highly probably that a big reason why you feel
bad is because of food that you are eating.  

My problem is dairy. Your problem may be wheat or
corn or soy or whatever.  Give the experiment a try
and see what you can discover for yourself. Most people
are allergic to something. They just do not know it.

The test is free. It requires only determination and
discipline. The end result can have a huge impact on
how you feel. 

Say goodbye to depression and fatigue.
Say hello to life.

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

An Encouraging Report from One Man who Takes Sinemet with Mucuna

What happens if you take Sinemet and Mucuna

 at the same time?  The following account was

written by Max. Max forwarded the following

account to me this week and gave me permission

to make it public. Max has Parkinson’s and

lives in Canada.  

 

 

 

 

 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 

 

 

 

 

“I’m  53 years old (or young).  I was diagnosed
with PD back in March 2001. I had a minimal
exposure to PD meds back then, just long
enough (one month on Sinemet) to see an
improvement. That convinced me that I have PD.
Whatever PD is.”

“I started taking lots of vitamins, antioxidants,

eating better, exercising the best I can,

meditating, acupuncture, Ti-Chi, tried PDrecovery,

Chi-Gong, visualizing techniques, energy work,

etc. etc. I’m sure it all helped, but eventually

I needed a walker and could barely take care

of myself.”

 

“By February of 2006, 5 years later, I was having

a hard time using a walker and was looking

into getting a wheelchair. I couldn’t take it any

longer, so I regrettably broke down and decided

to take Sinemet. “

 

“In about a week, Sinemet started to work. And in

about a month, I was a completely different person.

I could walk, got my balance back, started to gain

back my normal weight and I could even ride my

mountain bike again.””

 

“But in only 6 months of taking Sinemet, I found

it was taking longer and longer to kick in, not lasting

as long and sometimes it wouldn’t kick in at all.

Sometimes I would take 1 1/2 tablets of

Sinemet CR 200/50, at a time, with no effect at all.”

 

“Talk about being scared all over again. I knew

getting on Sinemet would be a limited ride,

but I never thought it could be this short for me.”

 

“When I heard about “Mucuna Pruriens” 

(Zandopa also called HP-200), a natural herb from

India, in the fall of 2006, I got very interested.

The first time I tried it, I felt some improvement.

In about two months, I gradually reduced my

Sinemet CR 200/50 from 5 tablets a day to

only 1 tablet a day (break it into 1/3’s) and

I take it with Mucuna. “

 

“I feel like this “Mucuna” (Zandopa) is

REALLY HELPING me a lot. I take it

3 or 4 times a day and can pretty well

function normally when the herbs kick in –

not bad considering that I was ready

for a wheelchair. When the herbs wear off,

my PD symptoms still come back,

but not nearly as bad as before. “

 

“I’ve been taking Mucuna and Sinemet for

the past 1 1/2 years. I’m currently taking

1/2 a tablet of Sinemet (200/50) with

1 tsp of powdered Mucuna (Zandopa)

3 or 4 times a day. In 3 hour intervals.

I also take Ashwaganda & Brahmi. I try

not to take anything in the evening or

before I go to bed. I like to give my body

a break and give it a chance to build up

its own dopamine over night. It seems

to work because I can go for an hour

walk in the morning before I take my herbs.”

  

“I purchase Zandopa directly from India:    

http://mall.coimbatore.com/bnh/zandu/zandopa.htm

 

“From my own personal experience,

if anyone with pd wants to try Mucuna,

I recommend that you take it slowly.

You might want to get some small

measuring spoons, the kind used for

cooking. I’ve started taking a level

1/4 tsp of powered Mucuna (Zandopa)

3 times a day for the first week.

A 1/2 tsp 3 times a day for the second week.

And I worked my way to 3/4 tbsp 4 times a day

by the 4th week. “

 

“I also gradually reduced my Sinemet

from 4 (200/50) tablets per day to only

one pill a day in a couple of months.

I break the Sinemet pill into quarters.

I take the Sinemet at the same time as

the Zandopa 4 times a day.”

 

“It works best if you take it at least

1/2 hour before meals or at least

1 1/2 hours after a meal. I mix the

Zandopa in half a glass of water.

I use a small hand held blender to

mix it, it gets rid of the sludge at the

bottom. Personally I don’t mind the

taste, but I do add some juice to it

(cranberry, etc.)”

 

“I’m doing all this on my own right now,

but you should let your doctor know

what you’re doing.  I keep a record

(date, time of day, amount, when it

kicked in, faded out, and effects

(good or bad) meals time, etc.”

 

“Just take it slowly. If you feel anxious,

hyper, antsy, or have a lot more energy

than normal, you know you’re taking too

much.”

 

“I space the doses by three hour ’till

the next one. I take just enough to be

normal without feeling anxious. It works

extremely well for me; I’m really surprised

more people with pd don’t take it.” 

 

“My pd hasn’t gotten any worse in the past

1 1/2 years of taking Mucuna. If anything

I’ve gotten better in some areas.

 

I no longer have any balance problems,

haven’t been constipated for over a year now.

No longer have any tremors unless I’m stressed.

Can ride a bike, jog, walk normal etc. when

the herbs are in my system. But I did have to

increase my intake of Mucuna. I’m not taking

 level tsp. And 1/2 a tablet of Sinemet (200/500)

3 or 4 times a day.”

 

“I’m not having any negative side effects at all

from taking Mucuna. My body has adapted to it.

I believe the body can repair itself, taking Mucuna

is a natural plant product. It  helps me regain my

strength so I can take care of myself. A great

website on Mucuna is:”

 

http://www.parkinson.org/NETCOMMUNITY/Page.aspx?&pid=459&srcid=379

 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

 

 

Control of Dopamine Systems and Dopamine Levels

Question: 

Has Anyone Improved Enough to Discontinue Sinemet?

Response:

The most encouraging news I have heard comes from John Coleman who is from Australia. He is a naturopath who himself had Parkinson’s in the mid 90’s and has now fully recovered. John has now helped many others do the same.  Here is John Coleman’s answer to the question in his own words. 

“I chose not to take any western medication during my journey. There were a number of reasons for that, mainly around the way doctors treated me. But that was my choice, and I’m glad of it.”

“However, all my clients who have recovered were taking western medication (Sinemet, Madopar, and/or others) until they got better. The first was taking around 1500 mg of levodopa per day, and gradually weaned himself of it over two years. Another was on Sinemet 100/25 three times daily and reduced that to 0 over about 18 months. Another was on Madopar and went cold turkey (I don’t advise that) after three years or so and has stayed well. Others have started on high medication and reduced to very low doses while they still work towards recovery.

“I saw a client this week who just gave up Sinement in January because he didn’t like the way it made him feel. He is a little stiffer without it, but feels better in himself and has more energy to work towards wellness. He is improving in health steadily.”

At Parkinsons Recovery we are hearing more and more stories from people who have successfully reduced the dose of the medications they have been taking under the close supervision of their doctor. I will be posting these reports as they come through.

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

How do I figure out the Best Dose and Timing of my Medications for Parkinson’s?

Most people have problems figuring out the best
timing and dose of their Parkinson’s medications. I
am not a medical doctor, so I am not qualified or
trained to be able to help you with this problem.
Clearly, the best thing you can do is to consult with
your doctor when problems emerge.

I do want to comment on the energy behind trying
to figure out the right timing and dose of medications. 
The energy behind this effort is intentional (which is good), 
forceful (which can be good) and controlling (which is bad).
So what is so wrong with the energy behind control? After all,
control is what makes things happen in the world, right?

Most people we work with who have Parkinson’s have
been very successful in their careers and work lives
because they know how to use the energy of control
effectively and efficiently. So again you are probably
wondering why is control in this case “bad”?  

Cntrolling behavior can be bad for people with the
symptoms of Parkinson’s because controlling
behavior  pumps out adrenaline which sustains 
hormonal imbalances in the body. 
If you are trying to control the timing of your medications,
every day (and even making different decisions every
hour about what do to) there is an energy of control
which is continuously present. The hormonal imbalance
in the body is continuously present, making balance an
ever present challenge for the body.   

What do you do about the energy behind control? 
Make it conscious, so that you come to a place where
evaluating your dose and timing become effortless
(as opposed to forced) as you listen to the needs of
your own body. 

In summary, there is a curious tension between
the energy of “control” (which involves doing
something every day to your body) versus being
able to relax and let go. When you try to force
relaxation, it just doesn’t work. The body just
becomes more alert and even more adrenaline
is pumped out.

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

How can I know what I need to do for myself to feel better?

Trust that your body knows what it needs to come
back into balance.  I think there is a special skill
involved in being able to communicate with  your
own body. The skill requires the ability to check in 
regularly to see what your body  needs.

I think it helps to think about what you can do
in the moment rather than trying to figure out
one single huge intervention that you can do
(such as visit clinic A or take supplement B or
see doctor C). We work with this skill at 
Jump Start to Wellness.

For example, let’s say you are in a stressful
situation. Your body will probably give out the
usual signals of stress. Symptoms will flare up
(such as more shaking, trembling, greater
rigidity or whatever. . ) Are you noticing?  
This is your stage cue to reduce the stress
in the moment.  

I think a key is first to make conscious the
usual reality that the underlying trigger for the
symptoms involves some combination of fear,
stress and trauma. It thus helps to begin watching
yourself closely and noticing when the stress
flares up. When you can monitor your stress
levels every moment, you can learn how to
get your body out of stress and into a more
balanced mode.

Alternatively, if you have having increased
symptoms, your body may be having problems
processing all the supplements and medications
you may be taking in conjunction with the food
you eat.  You may feel sluggish or depressed.
When everything is combined together, the level
of toxins can begin to overwhelm your immune
system. 

When your body gets overloaded with
substances it can not process (which can
include medications of one type or another, 
toxins, pathogens, etc.) the immune system
crashes. Again, symptoms will get worse.
This is when the toxins begin to take their toll. 
If this happens it would help to investigate 
ways to detox your body.

Your body will tell you what it needs. The
symptoms are important signals. In the end,
it is all a question of inviting your body to
come back into balance moment to moment.  

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery
 

Parkinsons Disease Natural Treatments

Question:

Are you familiar with the work being done in Santa Cruz, CA (PD Recovery Project), and do you have any information about the success (or lack thereof)?

Answer:

I personally believe they are providing a useful alternative
for people with Parkinson’s who are interested in 
finding ways to feel better. There is a large body
of information on their website that is interesting
and informative.

I also know they offer group sessions as do
we at Jump Start, though the focus, content
and delivery differs considerably. We look at
Parkinson’s as an issue involving a number of
factors (toxins, nutrition, trauma, pathogens).
They are much more focused in their approach
as I understand it. 

I have heard many reports from people who have
participated in their programs. The feedback 
jumps all over the place and reports are mixed. 
It is clear however that some people have found
relief from their symptoms or have found techniques
that are helpful.  

I hope others who are familiar with their program
will comment on their personal experience below. 

We have observed that most people are actually
not aware that they are getting relief from their
symptoms. Just because someone says a program
did not help does not mean that is true necessarily.
It is very difficult to track yourself when there are
so many symptoms that come and go. 

I created the Symptom Tracker program so that
anyone with Parkinson’s can track their
symptoms over time. You simply go to the website,
enter any name (so you can not be identified and
the information is confidential) and answer a
39 item questionnaire. 

You initially get baseline results. Then, you visit 
the website in a month or so and (using the same name
to log in)  answer the questionnaire again.
The program gives you an immediate report of
how your symptoms have shifted over time.
You can print out the results and show them
to your doctor.  

System Tracker is free. Your past data are
always stored under the user name you give
so you can track yourself over time.

Just be sure and give a user name that
can not be connected to you in any way. 
The information is known only to you.  

I suggest that if you decide try any modality, track your
symptoms using Symptom Tracker.  We invite
everyone who participates in Parkinsons
Recovery programs to use Symptom Tracker so they can
monitor their own progress for themselves. 

If you join us in the Parkinsons Recovery Chat Room Mondays
(I participate from 9:00 am – 10:30 am pacific time) you 
can ask anyone else who is present about their experience
with the Santa Cruz program. This type of feedback from
people who have actually participated would clearly be
helpful to you at this point. 

I also want to say that everyone is different.  
Responsiveness to any specific modality – I do
not care what it is – will differ. 

For example, Sally reports to you that therapy A was the
holly grail for her. Sam reports that therapy A  gave him 
no relief and was a waste of money and time.  Down the
line Sam reports that therapy B is his holly grail, 
while Sally says it is a waste of time for her. 

We encourage people at Parkinsons Recovery to collect
information about all the many alternatives that are
available as you are doing now.  I encourage you 
to experiment with those that you are called
to and see what happens. 

The recovery program that will succeed for you
in the long run will be tailored to to your
situation, fit your personal needs and
satisfy your preferences.

Have fun searching.

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery 

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery
  
 

How Do You Determine Which Treatments Are Appropriate for You?

Question:

How Do You Determine Which Treatments Are Appropriate
for the Individual?

Response:
 

We show each person ways they can figure the answers out 
for themselves. Your body knows the answers. We just have to
remember to ask. How do we ask our own body a question
and, more curiously, how do we figure out the answer? 

Muscle testing is a great way to find out what our body
needs. I have an explanation of how to do muscle testing
in a Parkinsons Recovery newsletter.  

Each person is unique. Some approaches work beautifully
for one person but not another. It does not make sense for 
to advocate one standard approach. 

We encourage people to  experiment, to find out what
works for them. There are so many fascinating options 
today. We provide extensive information about the
many options that are available so that decisions can be
made using the full range of information. 

In summary, the body knows what it needs. We just have to
remember to ask it.

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D. 
Parkinsons Recovery 

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

How Do You Triage People?

Question:

How do you triage people?

We accept anyone into our program who is eager to find ways to heal themselves. The only issue for us turns on whether a person wants us to “fix them” or whether they want to figure out ways they can heal themselves.

If someone wants to be fixed, we are not the answer and always refer them out. Our approach takes a commitment from the person and a willingness to allow the time it takes for the body to heal. 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

How does John Coleman, ND, Fit into your Work?

Question: 

How does John Coleman ND fit into your work here in the United States?

Response:

John Coleman is a naturopathic doctor from Australia who himself was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 1995. Using a unique combination of natural approaches, John fully recovered in three and a half years. He now helps other people find relief from their symptoms. 

We collaborate closely with John Coleman. Zero Point Healers was doing work with Parkinson’s in Washington state beginning in 2004.  John had been working with Parkinson’s clients for 10 years. John came to Washington state to do a clinic on Parkinson’s which we attended. At the clinic, John talked about everything we were talking about here in the Washington state to help people find relief from the symptoms of Parkinson’s. 

So, I concluded – we must have gotten it all right. We must have figured out the answer. After all, how could the two of us working independently on opposite sides of the globe have come up with the same set of ideas? It is highly implausible unless the ideas themselves are intrinsically correct.

John’s has had a profound influence on my own work here in the United States. He currently offers a top flight 12 step Parkinsons Recovery Program for anyone interested in finding ways to get relief from the symptoms of Parkinson’s. 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D. 
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

Can I Stop Taking Sinemet if I Decide to Pursue Natural Therapies?

Question:

Dr. Rodgers: I was interested in your suggestion that Parkinson’s is not caused by a lack of dopamine but due to adrenaline, toxic and stress problems.  Does this mean that I could stop taking Sinemet?

Response:

First let me emphasize I am not a medical doctor. You will need to consult with your medical doctor about any changes in your medications or doses.   

There can be serious consequences if you stop taking your medications abruptly. The addictive properties to some medications for Parkinson’s make it particularly difficult – and even dangerous – to stop taking them cold turkey.   

I have heard sad reports from people who tried to go off of their medications cold turkey. These reports say that people have found themselves in the unfortunate situation of having to go back on their medications at an even higher dose – sometimes twice as high – when compared to the dose they were taking the day they tried to quit.  

The decision to wean yourself off of your medications is a serious one. Be sure to consult with your doctor if you consider doing something like this. Some people are able to successfully reduce the dose they take. In these cases the reduction is gradual and, again, conducted only with the close supervision of their doctor.

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

Story of a Miracle Recovery from Parkinson’s

Question 

My husband, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease
seven years ago, and who was drug free for the first five
of those years, has improved dramatically over the past
two months as follows: 

major, noticeable and sustained
   increase in energy (sexual, emotional, physical, mental, etc.): 
handwriting is easier; 
balance improved; 
less need for sleep and recovery/rest;
abatement of muscle soreness;
urge to return to direct, upright posture and then, arms swing naturally;
return of facial expression, moving faster and smoother;
the list goes on. 

He presently takes 5 25/100 Sinemet per day, which he
has been taking for almost two years.  He also is on a wide
range of supplements, which he has been on from the beginning
and finally, I have been giving him weekly energy treatments
which are loosely based on yin tui na but which amount to
an intuitive, hands on kind of relaxation session.
 
We are simply unable to explain his seeming recovery
and are happy to live with it as a miracle.  However, we
wanted to advise you of the remarkable turn-around
he is undergoing and seek any input you may have. 

Response

Your story of recovery is an inspiration to everyone with
Parkinson’s who are on the road to recovery. Thank you
so much for sending it. I hope others with stories similar
to yours will be encouraged to send their own personal 
experiences with recovery.

Your husband’s recovery program has consisted of a two pronged
approach: nutrition and energy work. He gives his body the
nourishment it needs to rejuvenate damaged neural pathways and
balance out the intricate array or hormones in his body.

Why did it take so long for the supplements to take effect?
It is often the case that the digestive system is compromised
in the early stages of recovery.  The food needed by the
body to repair cells is not being adequately assimilated or
processed. It takes time for blockages and barriers in the
digestive system to clear.  

Some of the best evidence of recovery comes from John
Coleman, ND. It took him nearly four years to recover from
the symptoms of Parkinson’s. As a naturopath John has helped 
other clients fully recover, but their recovery too has taken
2-4 years. It simply takes time for the digestive system and
the body time to come “back on line.”  

You have also been giving him subtle energy treatments.
I believe this is also a significant reason for his remarkable
improvement. 

My colleagues and I did a six month study to evaluate the
effects of energy healing on the symptoms of 10 persons
who have Parkinson’s in Portland, Oregon. We tracked
their symptoms using standard research instruments
and videos. 

Findings showed that 75% of the symptoms either improved
or stayed the same. Videos of before the treatments and after
also showed remarkable improvements.

Energy work helps to release stress and trauma which we
believe is a factor that causes the symptoms of Parkinson’s.
Energy work also helps the body balance out the complicated
mix of hormones that are continuously circulating throughout
the body.   

Your experience with the recovery of your husband matches
our own experience perfectly.  The weekly energy sessions and
the nutritional supplements are both clearly two important reasons for
the miracle of his recovery. 

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D. 
Parkinsons Recovery  

 © 2008 Parkinsons Recovery

The Upside and Downside of the Mucuna Bean

Question: What are your thoughts about using the Mucuna bean to
                    treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s? 

Answer:  

There is an upside and a downside to taking Mucuna bean 
to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s. 

The Upside 

Macuna bean (or Mucuna Puriens) is derived from a plant
that grows
in tropical climates. The Mucuna herb has been used
for generations in India and other eastern countries 
to treat
Parkinson’s with varying success. Mucuna is by no means
a new revelation.  

People use Mucuna in part because it does not
have the side effects of prescription medications. 
Several volunteers from the Portland Parkinsons Energy
Project who do not take prescribed medications
for Parkinson’s have been pleased with the results they
get from taking 
Mucuna.  Other people have been able
to reduce the dose of their prescribed medications or
even wean themselves off medications altogether. 

Research on the effectiveness on Mucuna is encouraging.
I will be summarizing these discoveries in upcoming
Parkinsons Recovery newsletters

No changes in the dosage of prescription
medications should of course be made without
consulting with your doctor first. Even though it
is not a prescription medication, it is also just
as important to consult with your doctor before
taking any natural herb supplement like Mucuna.   

The Downside 
 
It is clear from talking with other health professionals that
Mucuna is not a cure nor does it provide relief 
for everyone. After all, if Mucuna were a panacea 
everyone with Parkinson’s would be taking it and no one
today would be suffering from its symptoms.

Many people think of Parkinson’s simplistically as
deficiency of dopamine. In fact, the “disease” is 
described by most health care providers as such. 
The truth of the matter is that 
reasons for
the symptoms of Parkinson’s are far, far more
complicated than this. 

Symptoms of Parkinson’s are aggravated by an imbalance
of over
39 different neurotransmitters. When you take 
Mucuna (or any dopamine supplement for that matter)
you are making a decision to
focus on only a tiny fraction
of the problem. 

The body is making fine adjustments to the production
and distribution of hormones continuously, second by
second, minute by minute. 
Consider the maze of
complicated adjustments your body makes to produce 
and distribute the other 38 neurotransmitters when you take
any dopamine lookalike.

Ingesting a single synthetic hormone once a day creates an instant
imbalance. The body is challenged with the task of re-balancing
all the other 38 hormones that must be continuously manufactured 
and
distributed to the tissues. 
The “adjustment” that comes from taking a dopamine
supplement 
is crude. M
ucuna is taken once or twice a
day. The body produces and distributes hormones
continuously each and every second of the day. 
Do the math. The difference is mind-boggling. 
If the choice is between the body and Mucuna I
am 
betting on the body any day of the week.
A second challenge you will encounter if you decide to
take Mucuna – and keep in mind this
may be a good
choice for you – is that you are giving your body the
signal it does not
need to produce dopamine
on its own.  
Think like your body and you will understand
the long term consequences of what happens when
you take a dopamine producing supplement like Mucuna. 

Here is the decision sequence: 
Your body is busy
with the work of adjusting and
balancing hormones
which, after all, is one of its important jobs. Mucuna mysteriously
appears in the digestive system.
There is suddenly and
unexpectedly an 
external intrusion into the body. The
body begins to ponder:
  

“Who is in charge here?”   

A critical function of the body is suddenly and unexpectedly 
being handled by 
someone else. The mind then says to itself:

      “If someone else is doing my job, why should I bother?”

Isn’t this just what you do when someone else begins doing
a job you thought was your responsibility?  

reason that cells in the substantia nigra die is because
dopamine is being supplied by an external source. 
Cells 
that produce dopamine are no
longer needed. You either
use it or lose it. In this case you lose it.
The body eventually
surrenders 
responsibility for producing dopamine.  
John Coleman ND points out that most of the Macuna bean
that is packaged and sold in the marketplace is not actually 
“natural.” It is 
processed. The Mucuna pill capsules
are manufactured and refined, purified and converted to 
powder. 
John Coleman has also observed in his clinic that 
Macuna can induce the “same adverse effects as synthetic
levodopa if consumed in large quantities over a long period.

Coleman has a different recommendation for his clients.
He suggests  you hydrate your body by taking a
natural homeopathic remedy. The body has an easier
time producing and balancing hormones when the cells
are adequately hydrated.   

Mucuna  may provide welcome relief in the short term.
But if it is used as a lifetime remedy your body’s 
incredibly intricate 
system for monitoring
hormones will be short circuited. Sensitivity of
the monitoring system is degraded and the system
itself is eventually disabled.

Your body gradually gives up its charge at birth to maintain
health and wellness. You eventually begin to feel lousy.
Your health 
deteriorates.

Why not give your body a chance to do its work whenever
possible? Wait. Be patient. Acknowledge to yourself
that you will not necessarily feel good every day. Accept
the reality that some days you will likely feel lousy.
  Helping
the body re-remember how to balance hormones is not an
easy task but the rewards are worth it.

Robert Rodgers, Ph.D.
Parkinsons Recovery