Parkinsonís Disease usually results in an imbalance of the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems of the autonomic nervous system.  Parkinsonís Disease usually leads to an overstimulated sympathetic system and an inhibited parasympathetic system.  Calcium, magnesium, sodium, and potassium are involved in maintaining balance of the two systems.  It is the job of magnesium to inhibit the sympathetic nervous system.  Proper levels of magnesium can help regulate the imbalance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems in Parkinsonís. 

The autonomic nervous system is the aspect of the nervous system that regulates the functions you do not need to control.  For example, your heartbeat, your digestion, your thyroid hormones, and so on.  The autonomic nervous system is broken down into the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems.  The sympathetic system controls the functions that react to stress, such as blood pressure, heartbeat, increased blood flowing away from the skin and to the muscles and brain, and so on.  The parasympathetic system controls the functions and organs associated with the digestion, such as the stomach, small intestine, large intestine, pancreas, gall bladder, liver, and so on.  The two systems work together, but antagonistically to each other.  For instance, in an emergency the sympathetic system will be stimulated in response to the situation, while the parasympathetic system will be inhibited, with blood flow from the organs of digestion diverted to muscles and the brain.    

The adrenals are part of the sympathetic system.  The adrenals respond to stress.  In Parkinsonís Disease the motor symptoms are stressful to the body and highly stimulating to the sympathetic system.  The involuntary muscle control day and night of a Parkinsonís patient demonstrate the over stimulation of the sympathetic system and the adrenals.  As discussed, the sympathetic and parasympathetic system work together, although antagonistically.  Thus, the overstimulated sympathetic system will by its nature inhibit the parasympathetic system.         

Calcium is often a second messenger hormone.  The hormones are the chemical messengers of the body.  They send messages to cells and the messages must get inside the cells to activate the appropriate responses.  Calcium is often used as a second messenger of hormones to activate the appropriate responses inside cells. Magnesium balances calcium.  This means magnesium helps to shut down the messages calcium delivers, after calcium has completed its work.    

Calcium is often a second messenger of the hormones that run the sympathetic nervous system.  This means if the sympathetic nervous system is overstimulated, calcium is involved as a second messenger hormone.  If you slow down or stop the messages calcium is delivering, you will inhibit the sympathetic nervous system.    

Calcium is balanced outside cells by the magnesium inside cells. If the appropriate ratio exists between calcium and magnesium, then calcium may be inhibited from overly stimulating the sympathetic system.  

Helping to balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems can decrease stress from Parkinsonís.  Inhibiting the sympathetic system will inhibit epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine, which can help in conserving dopamine.  The primary cause of Parkinsonís is considered low levels of dopamine.  Dopamine produces norepinephrine and epinephrine, so conserving these two by inhibiting their production due to an overly stimulated sympathetic system can conserve dopamine.  This can decrease stress from Parkinsonís.    

Proper magnesium-calcium balance can help balance the sympathetic system and parasympathetic system.  Sodium works with calcium, so it can also stimulate the sympathetic system.  Potassium works with magnesium, so it can help inhibit the sympathetic system.  Therefore, you should consider laboratory testing for magnesium, potassium, calcium, and sodium in Parkinsonís.  If the testing shows improper mineral levels, you should consider appropriate supplementation to help balance these minerals.  Consider supplementation using only pharmaceutical quality.    

In conclusion, the effects of an overly stimulated sympathetic system are stressful in Parkinsonís.  Proper balance of magnesium and calcium can help balance the sympathetic and parasympathetic system, which can decrease the stress from Parkinsonís.  

Note Ė In order for these nutritional ideas to be successful, you must use supplements of the highest quality. Dr. Bob often said, ďalmost all supplement companies produce poor quality.Ē  You can consider the product page of this web site. Almost all the products met Dr. Bobís 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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The Food and Drug Administration has not evaluate any of the statements contained on this web site.  The information contained in this article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.  Remember each personís body is different and will react differently to various herbal, vitamin and mineral supplements.  Therefore, any supplementation must be administered on an individual basis.  Use the information found on this web site as precisely that: Information.  You and your doctor must make any final decisions.  This information is not meant to replace any doctor and patient consultation.  This information should in no way replace your personal physicianís advice. 

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