No singular diet can treat Parkinson’s disease or its symptoms and as such there is no specified diet for a parkinson’s patient, but a healthy and balanced diet can improve general well-being. While there is no prescription for a PD-specific diet, to maintain overall good health most people living with Parkinson’s disease should eat a variety of whole grains, vegetables, fruits, milk and dairy products, and protein-rich foods such as meat and beans. Also consider including nuts, olive oil, fish and eggs to your diet, for their beneficial fats. Eating fruits and vegetables may help keep you energized and hydrated. Fiber-rich foods and fluids may ease symptoms of constipation or low blood pressure. Adjusting the timing and composition of meals might allow medications to work better, and you may need to avoid specific foods to prevent side effects.
It is extremely necessary to maintain health while suffering from PD. To maintain the right health certain steps should be followed:
- Eating a variety of foods will help you get the energy, protein, vitamins, minerals and fiber you need for good health.
- Choose a diet with plenty of grain products, vegetables, fruits, which provide vitamins, minerals, fiber and complex carbohydrates.
- Limit the sugar. A diet with too much sugar increases too many calories and reduces the nutrients.
- Reduce salt and sodium intake to decrease blood pressure.
- Choose a diet low in fat and cholesterol to reduce the risk of heart attack.
- Drink alcoholic beverages in moderation, as they have empty calories and no nutrients at all.
Intake of right foods will always helps in the medications to work in the right direction when suffering from Parkinson’s disease. It helps in keeping your bones strong and in maintaining general fitness and health.
- Drink enough water, at least 6 glasses everyday. Staying hydrated is important, but if drinking water leads to urinary urgency, try eating foods with a high water content in place of beverages, such as celery, butternut squash, grapefruit, strawberries and watermelon.
- One should eat fiber rich foods. Also, including brown rice, beans and fruits to ease any digestive problems.
- Vitamin D intake should be increased as it is directed towards bone health which is very important for a parkinson’s patient. Vitamin D is found in fortified milk and milk products, egg yolks and fatty fish, like tuna, mackerel and salmon.
- Walnuts, cashew nuts and other nuts promote to brain health. Berries also contain beneficial antioxidants, and foods that may have anti-inflammatory effects in the brain, like salmon, tuna and dark, leafy green vegetables.
- One of the most important medications used to treat Parkinson’s Disease is levodopa (Sinemet, Sinemet CR, Madopar, Dopar, Larodopa, Prolopa, Syndopa). However, levodopa must compete for absorption from the small intestine with proteins in food, and it may be necessary to take care with the timing of meals and medication.A combination of levodopa with carbidopa or benserazide, known as the brand name Sinemet, Madopar, and other names, is an important medication used in treating Parkinson’s disease.
Sudden change of diet can be difficult but going through the following steps can make it easy.
- Don’t go for wide changes, go for one change at a time. Like eating a handful of nuts a few times a week or avoiding white bread. It’s the small changes that add up to big benefits.
- Consulting with a registered dietician is a good option. The dietician can help you plan menus and make shopping lists for preparing nutritious meals that you like and that account for your individual needs and the timing of your medications. A dietician can also help you in maintaining and keeping a check on your diet.
- Consult with an occupational therapist about assistive devices to make eating and drinking easier.
- If swallowing issues are causing problems eating , a speech-language pathologist may be able to help.