Managing without medication

I've read a few posts where people are delaying medication for as long as they can. That is my aim too, mainly because I see from my mum the effects that these drugs can have.

So far the symptoms I have are internal tremors, some rigidity and stiffness and a slightly dragging leg, and I find it harder to make expressions than before. These are all things I can live with while they're mild. But how practical will this be longer term? I know that's not a question anybody can answer really, but it's something that I ask myself.

What are some of the things people are doing to manage without medication?

So far I have tried taking coconut oil. I'm not good at remembering to take it every day but I did for a few weeks and my symptoms did seem to ease up. I'm going to take it more regularly now to check whether that was a coincidence or not.

I also go to see a chiropractor, and in the past that has really helped me a lot with stiffness and spasms.

And I practice tai chi and do some boxing at home. I find that they're good for relaxation and help the internal tremor.

I'm keen to build up a whole arsenal of non-medicinal 'remedies' that I can use, so I wonder if people would be able to post some other ideas here. If someone has already done something like this, then could you please post the link, as I don't want to duplicate information. :)

I know there's no cure, but I need things I can try to stave off the symptoms as best as I can.

What else do people recommend?


16 Replies

  • Hi there, I do take meds, am also on a clinical trial but like you have built an arsenal of additional weapons in order to help maintain a positive approach.

    Staying as fit as possible outside of PD, relaxation and de-stressing are key (but with 2 teenagers not easy!!)

    I do a weekly class in each of following: Yoga, Pilates, Conductive Education (most beneficial) and a combination of the three most mornings for 15 mins, before taking meds., walking whenever I can persuade somebody to join me. Music for bopping, music for in bed relaxation, singing at volume for "feel good" and to annoy kids.

    Avoid too much red meat, eat as healthy as possible without being obsessive. Try anything that does not cost the earth, e.g. Coconut oil, milk & brandy at bedtime ( perhaps that should read brandy & milk!). Occasional treat such as a massage.

    Laughter, amazing how a good belly laugh can uplift! Focus on what you can do rather than what you cannot.

    Stay is not all bad. Keep searching for tips to help - on that front, anybody have any for sleeping? I struggle to get more than 4 hours.......zzzzz tired now.

  • I find one tablet of phenergan - or even half a tablet - every three days or so gives me a good night's sleep (it's available from pharmacies without prescriptions)

  • Hi earthdweller. I have told you my story in the previous post. May I suggest that you go to my website, and see lots of answers to your questions. You may also write to me at and ask me more personal questions. I will try to help you, at no expense to yourself. I have been able to overcome most of my movement problems and I want to help others do the same. This may not be too popular with the pharmaceutical industry and maybe not some of the medical profession either, but we have to fend for ourselves.


  • For a solid sleep, melatonin helps (I use 10mg), but it was the addition of L-Theanine (200mg) - both shortly before bed - that really helped to smooth things out. (I got the L-Theanine tip from an earlier comment by 'Silvestrov' to this forum)

  • Hi Earthdweller, I am 8 months since diagnosis and my doctor recommends no meds yet. Exercise, intense and yoga and he also recommends COQ-10, antioxidants and main thing, No stress. Easier for an older person no longer involved in work and competitive sorts of activities or childraising but nonetheless it's a mind frame to work towards.

    Good luck and stay happy.

  • Hi Earthdweller, I am 8 months since diagnosis and my doctor recommends no meds yet. Exercise, intense and yoga and he also recommends COQ-10, antioxidants and main thing, No stress. Easier for an older person no longer involved in work and competitive sorts of activities or childraising but nonetheless it's a mind frame to work towards.

    Good luck and stay happy.

  • Thanks for all your tips so far. I'll have a look at your website John Pepper, and take a look at the supplements you've all recommended. racerCP, no stress is impossible right now, but I need to find better ways to manage it. I think exercise is probably a major answer here as well..

  • Hi 59and10. I'm so glad you're doing so well. I read your post and remembered that i had some coenzyme q10 around somewhere. Then I checked and they are 30mg tablets! I think I would have to take the whole tub to get that daily amount. :( It's really useful to know about this study and what it recommended. I need to think about supplements, so thank you.

  • If you want to keep yourself free of drugs have a look to this website. Howard is doing such a great job with his website.

    Metacognito just mentioned to Silvestrov. Have a look to Silvertrov regarding Mucuna, L-Tyrosine... very interesting points.

    At the same time keep an eye on Marty Hinz, Alvin Stein and Thomas Uncini work.

    One of many case studies (

    And finally if at one point you must go on medication do serious research about mucuna before everything, much better natural than synthetic besides mucuna has a lot of different things and all natural.

    There is a new book that covers very well the Mucuna Pruriens with a lot of references.

    Mucuna versus Parkinson: Treatment with natural levodopa (M.D. Rafael Gonzalez Maldonado)



  • Hi earthdweller, your symptoms sound much like mine.

    I took no medicine for the first year after diagnosis, but I did take Mucuna and Valerian. Now

    I take mucuna along with sinemet (1/2 pill two or three times a day). Valerian root extract helps me a lot with the internal tremors. Since adding a little sinemet to my Mucuna, I have seen a great improvement of symptoms. And since it is such a low does (I guess) I have no side effects beside some heart burn...

    I do swimming as exercise and forced cycling (got a sweet little exer-bike on Amazon-it only goes 75 rpm, but it seems to be enough.

    I think I can point to symptoms for about 4 years before diagnosis which swimming eliminated (the shoulder stiffness and fatigue). I think exercise is key.

    Bess Wishes

  • If you are still reading this earth dweller I recommend you check out Hanya Chlala an acupuncturist in London with a big heart for working with people with PD.

    Last yr she did a summer school class.

    She also has a clinic in LSE.

  • see my post "Emergency Room"

    After three years from dx till now no meds. Early Sunday morning my tremors were so bad I went to emergency room to see if they could give me something. They could not but the doc went ahead and gave me a prescription for levodopa/carb. This to do me until I can see my doctor Monday, if I can get in that early. I'll have him give me a prescription for Neupro patches.

  • Hi

    I am newly diagnosed and trying to avoid meds, just wondering how many of us are out there and with what success??

  • Also newly diagnosed, I was given ropinirole, which after 2 months had resulted in no alleviation of Parkinson's symptoms, but had some of the side effects, so I am in the process of weaning myself off it, and looking for ways of keeping clear of such addictive drugs, which don't even claim to cure, stop or even slow down, the progress of Parkinson's. So far Q10, Valerian, Mucuna and coconut oil seem to be recommended along with Yoga and Pilates. Incidentally, my physiotherapist has helped my movement problems considerably more than the medication did.

  • Hi Ryanjames. I was diagnosed in November 2014 and my strategy is to keep meds to a minimum for as long as possible on the basis that at the age of 57, I'm going to be dealing with this for a long time, unless I get run over by a bus. This site is very helpful as it has people at different stages with this condition and different ways of managing it. Look for the threads on the importance of exercise. I also take a lot of supplements and you can find more about that on www.fight-Parkinson' where there is a very helpful section. I take Mucuna puriems which I have found very effective, and again, this site has a lot of useful threads on this subject - just use the search facility. I use Zandopa and if you want t know where I source it, feel free to message me.

    This is not to say I don't take medication. For the first year after dx, I took no prescribed meds. A few months ago, I started on aziclet and in the last few weeks, I've started on a low dose of ropinirole. I negotiated half the dose originally prescribed and it seems to be working well. I was very worried about side effects but none so far.

    What seems clear is that exercise is really important. Take time to read some historic threads on this site. It's the most useful one I've found so far.

  • Hi Stevie

    Thank you for taking the time to reply really appreciated :)

    What are your main symptoms?

    Kind regards


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