Low levels of the
neurotransmitter (chemical messengers in the brain) dopamine characterize
Parkinson’s Disease. The enzyme
monoamine oxidase (MAO), it initiates the metabolic breakdown of various
chemicals in the body, into forms that can be assimilated or eliminated by the
body. MAO in the brain, binds to
several different neurotransmitters, including serotonin, norepinephrine, and
dopamine. MAO breaks them down into
smaller chemicals for eventual elimination from the body.
Thus MAO can decrease levels of
dopamine. Often MAO inhibitors,
such as the drug deprenyl are used to block the actions of MAO, which could
generate higher levels of dopamine.
The problem with using any
compound in large amounts and everyday is that eventually the body can become
depleted of various enzymes and other important compounds from the frequent use.
This can lead to allergies, insufficiency, and other events using
deprenyl. This can result in
decreasing levels of dopamine, as deprenyl loses some effectiveness.
Thus, you do not want to
stimulate MAO. Eventually this can
lead to decreasing the effects of deprenyl. This can result in less conservation of dopamine.
MAO also breaks down
tyramine. Tyramine is a chemical
that occurs in some foods, especially in high concentration in aged cheese,
nutmeg, possibly some smoked fish, and possibly some aged wine.
It is also a metabolite (end product) of PEA.
PEA is a molecule that bears close structural relationships with the
following compounds; “amphetamine, the neurotransmitters norepinephrine and
dopamine; phenylalanine, tyrosine, and L-dopa, amino acids used by the body to
make these neurotransmitters, and tyramine, a chemical that occurs in some foods
and is also one of PEA’s metabolic end-products
(John Morgenthaler and Dan Joy, Better
Sex Through Chemistry).”
Eating aged cheese, which can
produce tyramine, and other chemicals such as those that resemble PEA, can
stimulate the production of MAO enzymes. Stimulating
MAO enzymes stresses the body to conserve dopamine.
Deprenyl can protect against MAO. There
are actually two types of MAO enzymes called MAO-A and MAO-B.
MAO-B is responsible for the breakdown of dopamine.
Except at very high doses, deprenyl can selectively inhibit MAO-B.
MAO-B works primarily in the brain.
MAO-A works primarily in the digestive system, and deprenyl does not
inhibit it. Tyramine can stimulate
MAO-A, which can breakdown epinephrine and norepinephrine.
Epinephrine and morepinerphine are synthesized from doprain. This may
lead to less conservation of dopamine.
Tyramine and other chemicals
that closely resemble PEA can displace stimulatory neurotransmitters called
catecholamines (dopamine, epinephrine and norepinephrine) from storage
granules, “where these chemicals are stored in an essentially dormant state.
The catecholamines are then released from the neurons into the synapses-
the spaces between brain cells-where they perform their stimulatory function.
The catecholamine-releasing action of tyramine, PEA, amphetamines, and
other siblings of PEA might be viewed as a process similar to passengers
entering and exiting a crowded elevator. As
a load of passengers (tyramine molecules) enters the elevator (a catecholamine
storage site inside a brain cell), old passengers (catecholamines) must flood
out into the hallway (the synapse), in order to make room for the new
passengers. In the cheese effect,
too much tyramine triggers excessive catecholamine release. (Better
Sex Through Chemistry).”
Eating aged cheese, in amounts
that are excessive in an individual, may stimulate excessive catecholamine
release. The neurotransmitter
norepinephrine controls the hormone adrenaline (epinephrine). The hormone
epinephrine and the neurotransmitter norepinephrine are produced from dopamine.
Thus, if epinephrine and norepinephrine are excessively stimulated by
tyramine, then this may deplete dopamine levels.
In Parkinson’s Disease,
methods and ideas to conserve dopamine can help a Parkinson’s sufferer.
Needing to increase doses of deprenyl to combat poor lifestyle habits
such as eating tyramine producing foods and stimulating the production of MAO-A
by tyramine can increase the stress of Parkinson’s.
Parkinson’s is a disease of
accelerated aging. Degeneration,
aging, and breakdown are a cascade of events in Parkinson’s.
Declining efficiency and function characterize Parkinson’s.
Antiaging is simply any idea that decreases stress.
There is no cure for Parkinson’s, but you can neutralize as many
negative effects as possible, as a method to slow down the progression of the
disease. Not eating tyramine-producing
foods is one idea to help decrease the stress of Parkinson’s Disease.
Remember – “Aged”
cheese may be culprit, not all cheese!
- compiled from Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics and the Mayo Clinic Diet Manual
Alcoholic beverage (some, not all alcohol)
Homemade yeast breads
Crackers containing cheese
Commercial meat extracts
Stored beef liver
Aged cheese (including Blue, Boursault, Brick, Brie, Camemberter,
Cheddar, Colby, Emmentaler, Gouda, Mozzarella, Parmesan, Provolone, Romano,
Roquefort, and Stilton)
Salted dried fish (herring, cod), pickled herring
Italian broad beans
Yeast concentrates or products made with them
Commercial gravies – anything with soy sauce, and any protein that has
not been stored properly or has some degree of spoilage (i.e., all but those
that have been freshly prepared).
The tyramine list was found in
the book, Breathe Well, Be Well, by
Note – In order for these anti-aging ideas to be successful, you must use supplements of the highest quality. Dr. Bob often said, "almost all supplement companies produce poor quality." You can consider the product page of this web site. Almost all the products met Dr. Bob’s approval. Since he passed away we have attempted to keep the same high standards.
WARNING: DO NOT STOP ANY TREATMENT OR MEDICATION YOU CURRENTLY USE. CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE STARTING THE USE OF SUPPLEMENTS.
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