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Tags: ginseng | parkinsons | substantia nigra | iron

Ginseng Helps Fight Parkinson's Disease

By Tuesday, 13 October 2020 04:41 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Ginseng holds promise for combating Parkinson’s disease. Studies have shown that various forms of ginseng also have special properties that protect against Parkinson’s.

For example, in an animal model of human Parkinson’s disease, Panax ginseng — which contains high levels of a compound called Rg1 — significantly reduced the death of neurons in the part of the brain most damaged in Parkinson’s disease, the substantia nigra.

This occurred possibly by increasing the levels of critical antioxidant molecules in these brain cells — glutathione and superoxide dismutase.

Ginseng was also shown to protect these same neurons in other models of Parkinson’s disease in which a metabolic product of dopamine (6-hydroxydopamine) was used, as well as in a rotenone model.

Rotenone is a commonly used pesticide that is a major environmental cause of Parkinson’s disease. In one study, it was found that taking ginseng orally could completely protect the substantia nigra neurons from a very powerful brain toxin called MPTP, which is used to create animal models of human Parkinson’s, and can produce Parkinson’s in humans as well.

Importantly, ginseng protection worked even if it was taken two days after exposure to the toxin. Panax ginseng was found to increase the amount of dopamine in the brain area affected in Parkinson’s, the striatum, and also reduced the iron level in this critical brain area.

Accumulation of excess iron is known to be one of the earliest damaging events in Parkinson’s. Components of American ginseng were also provided considerable protection of these important neurons.

American ginseng protects against Parkinson’s-related brain damage by inhibiting nitric oxide accumulation in the brain and by reducing inflammatory brain mechanisms.

Another way ginseng protects against Parkinson’s disease is by increasing cells’ production of a powerful anti-inflammatory compound called NrF2. This compound protects all areas of the brain. Korean red ginseng increases NrF2 significantly, and also increases the efficiency of mitochondrial energy production in brain cells.

As with Alzheimer’s disease, combining a healthy diet, exercise, and the use of other protective supplemental compounds will greatly increase success in combating this terrible disorder.

Curcumin, quercetin, ellagic acid, berberine, vinpocetine, DHA, and a number of other compounds are beneficial.

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Ginseng holds promise for combating Parkinson’s disease. Studies have shown that various forms of ginseng also have special properties that protect against Parkinson’s.
ginseng, parkinsons, substantia nigra, iron
Tuesday, 13 October 2020 04:41 PM
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