Could getting thin slow the progression of Parkinson's? A new study, by Mark P. Mattson of the National Institute on Aging indicates that a long-term low calorie diet might offer protection from Parkinson's disease in monkeys.
Researchers fed one group of monkeys the low calorie diet for six months, during which they lost about 12% of body weight compared to monkeys fed a normal diet.Then both groups of primates were given a toxin which causes damage similar to Parkinson's disease, causing the degeneration of dopamine neurons in the brain.Movement was affected in all monkeys, but the ability to move and speed of movement were greater in the low-calorie monkeys than in those that had been fed normally.
The researchers found that the monkeys on a restricted diet had significantly higher concentrations than normal weight animals of two chemicals that protect nerve cells, BNDF and GNDF. Intermittent fasting has been shown to increase levels of BNDF in rodents, the researchers noted. GNDF, they said, currently is being given to Parkinson's patients in clinical trials.
Fasting has been researched for Parkinson's prevention not Parkinson's mitigation. Still, it is worth a try. If the strategy delays the progression of the disease and saves even one brain cell then I will try it.Even if it doesn't work I'll still get the benefit of being the shapeliest lady in the Support Group.