Parkinson's Disease mostly affects people over sixty. Damage to the nerves that produce dopamine causes muscle tremours and rigidity, slurred speech, balance problems, loss of facial expression, depression, memory loss and dementia. The natural supplement coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is emerging as a very promising treatment for Parkinson's. . . .

In the most recent study, 85 people with Parkinson's were divided into two groups. The 26 people in the first group were at a stage in their treatment when the effectiveness of the levedopa they were being medically treated with was begining to decline: a common problem with levedopa. So they added either a placebo or CoQ10 to the levedopa. The CoQ10 was in a form known as ubiquinol, and they took 300mg of it every day for 48 weeks.

The results were impressive. The people who took the CoQ10 had significantly better scores on the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS): their scores went down by 4.2% while the placebo groups scores continued to rise by 2.9%. This difference is statistically significant and clinically important.

The second group was still in the early stages of Parkinson's and had not started treating it with medication. This group either took 300mg of ubiquinol or a placebo for 96 weeks. The Parkinson's symptoms got worse in both groups. But they increased by a statistically significant 1.2 points less in the CoQ10 group than in the placebo group, meaning that the CoQ10 was able to slow the progression of the disease.

The evidence continues to mount that CoQ10 benefits people with Parkinson's. People given 360mg of CoQ10 for just four weeks had some of their symptoms improve significantly more than a group given a placebo (Neuroscience Letters 2003;341:201-4). And a sixteen month double-blind study found that 1,200mg of CoQ10 was more effective than lower doses. While scores on the UPDRS worsened by 49.8% in the placebo group, they worsened by a significantly less 29.6% in the CoQ10 group (Archives of Neurology 2002;59:1541-50).

Finding a conventional treatment for Parkinson's has proven difficult. Levedopa not only loses efficacy over time, but it only treats the symptoms. It is unable to alter the progression of the disease. It also has a host of side effects. So, that ubiquinol is emerging as a treatment that can safely improve symptoms and slow the progression of the disease is very exciting.

For more information on treating Parkinson's naturally, see our book The Family Naturopathic Encyclopedia.

Parkinsonian Relat Disord 2015;doi:10.1016/j.parkreldis.2015.05.022

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