Natural Supplements

Vitamin D

Vitamin D plays an important role in mood regulation, as well as nerve and brain health. Research has established a link between vitamin D levels and depression, claiming that taking vitamin D supplements may help treat the condition.

Magnesium supplement

A 2017 systematic review looked at the results of 18 different studies. The researchers found that magnesium supplements may improve measures of anxiety in people vulnerable to the condition, but also that the quality of evidence is not great. Taking high dosages of magnesium can cause diarrhoea. Start with a lower dosage, such as 100 milligrams (mg). Avoid exceeding 350 mg per day without a doctor’s approval.

Vitamin B

B vitamins are a group of eight different nutrients that work together to manage many processes in the body, including stress levels. A 2017 study found that people who had lower blood levels of vitamin B-12 were more likely to have depression or anxiety. A 2018 study found that people who ate foods high in B vitamins — in this case, yeast based spreads such as Marmite and Vegemite — had better anxiety and stress scores than people who did not. This was more pronounced for spreads fortified with vitamin B-12.

L-theanine

L-theanine is an amino acid that occurs in green and black tea. Some evidence suggests that it is a mild sedative and anti-anxiety agent. A 2016 double-blind study found that people who consumed a beverage containing 200 mg of l-theanine had lower stress response and cortisol levels after undertaking a challenging task than those who received a placebo. It is recommended to start with the lowest effective dosage of l-theanine. Supplements often come in 200 mg capsules. People should not exceed 400 mg without first asking a doctor.

Omega-3 fats

These occur in foods such as fish and flaxseed. They play an important role in brain health, according to the Office of Dietary Supplements. The body cannot make these fats, so people must get them from their diet. A 2018 systematic review and meta-analysis looked at the results of 19 clinical trials and concludes that taking an omega-3 supplement such as fish oil could be helpful for people with anxiety. A 2018 review study  suggests that a low intake of omega-3 fats can raise the risk of anxiety and depression, and that taking omega-3 supplements could help prevent or treat these conditions.

For motor symptoms

Curcumin

Curcumin is the spice in turmeric, often used in Indian cuisine and medicine. Curcumin has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties, and it seems to provide protection against nerve cell injury. In research studies, curcumin has shown that it can prevent the clumping of the protein alpha-synuclein. Clumps of alpha-synuclein, also called Lewy bodies, are one of the hallmarks of PD. Preventing Lewy bodies from forming could potentially reduce symptoms or slow the progression of the disease, although research is still in its early stages (Mythri RB, Bharath MM. Curcumin: a potential neuroprotective agent in Parkinson’s disease. Curr Pharm Des. 2012;18(1):91-9.Curcumin shows promise in attacking Parkinson’s disease. Michigan State University. Accessed online on 2/8/17 at http://msutoday.msu.edu/news/2012/curcumin-shows-promise-in-attacking-parkinson/)

Probiotics

Probiotics, such as fermented milk may be beneficial for a condition known as small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) in which there is excessive bacteria in the small intestine (defined as 100-1,000 times the normal amount.) SIBO can cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, bloating, chronic diarrhoea and weight loss. Research studies have shown that this condition is more common in people with PD than in the general population, and has also been linked to worsened motor fluctuations in PD. Using probiotics to help treat SIBO may work by re-establishing a more normal bacterial environment.

CBD

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a natural compound found in cannabis plants. These compounds are known as cannabinoids. Cannabis has several hundred of these compounds, though only a few are well known and widely studied. CBD doesn’t have the psychoactive benefits of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabis’s more famous cannabinoid. It does, however, have other potentially beneficial effects. Research suggests CBD may help reduce anxiety, relieve pain, and offer neuroprotective properties.

CBD for Tremors

Some of the most common treatments for Parkinson’s disease can cause medicine-related tremors or uncontrolled muscle movements. Treatment with the medicine won’t make it better — and it could make it worse.

As a possible solution, an older, smaller study has suggested that CBD may be able to help ease these muscle movements.

CBD for Sleep

Sleep disruption and a lack of quality sleep is a serious concern for people with Parkinson’s disease. Vivid dreams or nightmares, as well as movement during sleep, is common.

Studies have found that both cannabis and CBD alone might help with sleep disturbances.

Quality of life

Because of the many potential benefits of CBD for people with Parkinson’s, researchers have suggested using the compound might help improve quality of life. This is a major concern for individuals living with Parkinson’s disease.

One study found that people who had Parkinson’s disease and no psychiatric symptoms or conditions experienced an improved quality of life with CBD use. This study, too, was done in a very small group of people, so further research is needed to thoroughly support the findings.

Before taking any natural supplements, talk with a doctor. People should not suddenly stop taking medications without a doctor’s approval.