Parkinson's

  1. Could Parkinson's begin in your EYES?

    Like many older guys, I wear glasses. At my age, I’m helpless without them!

    Father Time can really do a number on our vision as time goes by.

    But it’s not just about reading the newspaper or a menu in a dark restaurant.

    Because what’s going on in our eyes can tell us a lot about what’s going on in our brains!

    Recently, I shared with you that certain changes in your retinas -- the light-sensitive nerve cells that line the back of your eyes -- may be an early sign of Alzheimer's disease.

    And according to a new study, changes to your retina may also be one of the first symptoms of another neurodegenerative disease.

    It’s one that I've lived with for over a dozen years: Parkinson’s.

    South Korean researchers found that the retinas of Parkinson's patients were significantly thinner than those in group of healthy controls.

    Not only that, but the Parkinson's patients with the THINNEST retinas also had the MOST SEVERE motor symptoms.

    Fortunately, I’ve got a way to naturally support your vision AND your mobility – and it’ll all make sense once you understand the underlying mechanism behind why eye changes may lead to Parkinson’s.

    It looks like the two are connected by the brain chemical dopamine.

    You see, we've known for a while that the tremors and stiffness of Parkinson's are linked to the loss of neurons in your brain that produce dopamine.

    And since dopamine can ALSO come from the nerve cells in your retina, the theory is that retinal cell death causes the same thing as when your dopamine-producing brain cells die off.

    Only, this is a red flag that may start waving WAY before other noticeable changes.

    Typically, Parkinson's is diagnosed based on a neurological exam -- and the doc might even scan your brain to take a gander at your dopamine system.

    But a study last year found that Parkinson's vision changes may begin more than a DECADE before any motor problems show up!

    So, the new study is a good reminder to get your eyes checked out regularly -- not only to screen for eye diseases, but also to gain "insight" into your general health.

    After all, your eyes aren't just a window into what's going on in your brain.

    Early signs of heart disease… diabetes… and even cancerous tumors often show up in your eyes.

    And it just so happens that many of the same healthy habits that protect your eyes from disease also help shield your brain from neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's.

    Natural anti-inflammatories like curcumin -- which is found in turmeric, a yellow spice used in ballpark mustard and Indian curries -- can reduce oxidative stress and damage in your retinas.

    It can ALSO help snuff out the flames in your gray matter that have been linked to Parkinson's.

    And since both Parkinson's and eye diseases like macular degeneration have been linked to high blood sugar, slashing sugar from your diet can protect both your brain and eye health.

  2. Why you should NEVER stop moving

    As you’ve read right here in eTips, I travel the world looking for natural therapies that can help beat back some of the most devastating diseases that afflict my patients and readers.

    But with as many exotic locales as I visit, my travels always take me back to China.

    The East is thousands of years ahead of the West in terms of using nature’s bounty to KILL cancer, EXTINGUISH pain, and even SHARPEN your memory.

    Now, the ancient Chinese secrets I usually share with you are comprised of herbs and acupuncture. But the latest study out of the land of “The Red Dragon” focuses on something else.

    It caught my attention because it shows how there’s something you can do to reduce your risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.

    And the more you do it, the more you reduce your risk.

    Of course, I already HAVE Parkinson’s disease. I’ve been managing it for over a dozen years.

    And what the Chinese researchers found confirms what I’ve seen in my own experience: You’ve got to exercise.

    In the study, “light” exercise didn’t do enough to write home about – so, I’m not talking about just walking. (Though JUST walking is better than NOT walking.)

    In order for the physical activity to have an impact, it needed to be at least “moderate.” That usually means you break a sweat after 10 minutes… but you’re not so out of breath that you can’t talk.

    A brisk walk would do the trick. So would mowing the lawn.

    Gals, the researchers say that guys will benefit the most from this… and that you won’t see much benefit at all… but I wouldn’t take that too much to heart.
    Exercise strengthens both your muscles AND your bones – and if you’ve got Parkinson’s disease, you need the strongest frame you can get.

    Getting some activity – especially outside – can also boost your mood. And trust me, if anything can bring you down, it’s Parkinson’s.

    But you don’t have to let it KEEP you down.

    As I mentioned, walking briskly may be enough to kick Parkinson’s to the curb – but we’re heading into that time of year when stepping foot outside for a stroll might require wearing galoshes and carrying an umbrella.

    You’ve got other options.

    Try swimming at your local indoor pool… pedaling on a stationary bike… or even sparring in the boxing ring with a gentle partner.

  3. Grandkids hitting the gridiron? Do THIS to keep them safe

    Are you ready for some football? Our favorite teams are back – even if it’s only technically “preseason” for the NFL, and we’ll have to wait a couple of weeks for the “official” start of the pro season. But that’s not all, because this time of year coincides with “Back to School,” which means that you may be spending your...
  4. How a veteran TV star is overcoming a nightmare diagnosis

    I don’t go too ga-ga over celebrities. I enjoy a good movie… and I love to tap my toe to a happy tune… but I don’t exact turn to the stars of stage and screen for life advice. But every now and then, a celebrity story comes out and grabs my attention – and that’s exactly happened with the news...
  5. Taking meds for Parkinson’s? You could be pressing your luck

    If you've been reading my eTips for a while now, you know that I've lived with a Parkinson's diagnosis for over a dozen years. And despite all of the research findings I've shared with you during that time, we still don't know exactly what causes this debilitating neurodegenerative disease. But we do know that in Parkinson's, your brain cells can't...
  6. Turn down the heat… inside your brain?

    Friend, this summer is a scorcher. It’s hotter than ever in multiple spots across the country, and I thank my lucky stars that the A/C is still working at my clinic and in my home and car. At least you can beat the heat that’s outside. But when it comes to the fires that may be raging inside your body…...
  7. Scary new link between blood sugar and Parkinson's

    Getting diagnosed with Parkinson's disease can be pretty harrowing, because the disease can rob you of your balance, motor control, and independence. I should know -- I was diagnosed with Parkinson's over a dozen years ago. Fortunately, I've been able to keep the disease from progressing with diet, exercise, and detox -- because we know that toxins from pesticides and...
  8. Heal your gut to save your brain

    Your belly aches... you're doubled over with cramps... and you're dashing to the toilet yet again. When you've got inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) -- whether it's ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease -- the "inferno" raging in your gut makes life downright miserable. And unfortunately, those "flames" aren't confined to the space below your navel. We know that inflammation in your...
  9. The Parkinson's risk lurking in your summer fruit

    From peaches and plums… to cherries and berries… there’s an abundant harvest of summer produce hitting stores right about now. And there's nothing like biting into sweet, juicy summer fruit picked at its peak -- and letting that juice drip down your chin. It not only tastes great -- you know that the nutrients and antioxidants in the season's brightly...
  10. Bumped your head ages ago? It’s not too late to heal your brain

    They say that April is Parkinson's Awareness Month -- and as someone who's lived with a Parkinson's diagnosis for over a dozen years, I can't let it slip by without a mention. Of course, I’m a little skeptical of any of these “awareness months” for any disease or health concern, as we need to be aware all 12 months out...

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