Uric Acid: Protective Effect for Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s is a disease that dates back to ancient times. The disease was named after London doctor James Parkinson in 1817 after he published “An Essay on the Shaking Palsy”, thus establishing Parkinson’s disease as a recognised medical condition. Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects one’s movement.

Parkinson’s develops gradually and at first is barely noticeable, starting with a tremor in just one hand. Afterwards the disease causes muscle stiffness and slowing of movement. In addition, speech may become soft and slurred. The disease causes the symptoms to worsen over time as the condition progresses. Presently, it affects up to 1 million people in the US with doctors diagnosing over 60,000 new cases every year! Just like gout the disease affects mostly men over the age of 60.

What’s interesting about Parkinson’s and how it relates to gout is a recent study published January 13, 2016 in the online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology, stated that men with high levels of uric acid may be less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease!

Men who had the highest levels of uric acid in the blood were nearly 40% less likely to develop Parkinson’s compared to those with the lowest levels of uric acid. Kinda a similar conclusion as to when I wrote about Alzheimer’s disease and how gout sufferers are less likely to develop Alzheimer’s due to us producing more uric acid in our bodies. The sample size of the study was about 400 people in ongoing studies who had developed Parkinson’s disease and more than 1200 people who were never diagnosed with the disease.

Tart Cherry Extract for Gout

One of the authors of the study, Dr. Xiang Gao of Pennsylvania State University said: “These results suggest that urate could protect against Parkinson’s or slow the progression of the disease in its very early stages before symptoms are seen.” He added: “The findings support more research on whether raising the level of urate in people with early Parkinson’s may slow the disease down.”

Dr.Gao goes on to say that it does suggest the chemical could be “protective against Parkinson’s disease risk or could slow disease progression during the preclinical stage of disease.” But there is a certain caveat although this seems as an exciting idea given that uric acid levels can be raised very easily and cheaply. And that is that excessively high levels of uric acid may lead to other health problems like kidney stones and gout according to Dr.Gao.

There have been other studies in the past few years proving this same conclusion. Also, further research needs to be done to learn how high levels of uric acid are not associated with lower risk of Parkinson’s disease in women Dr.Gao added. In conclusion, it seems that us gout sufferers are at lower risk of developing Parkinson’s if you see it that as a positive while living with gout.

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    4 replies to "Gout and Parkinson’s Disease"

    • Jaynemarie Styles

      Around age 60 I noticed that my handwriting was getting smaller and I was writing faster. I also noticed a small tremor in my right hand. The doctor went over my different symptoms and he suspected I’d either had a small stroke or the beginnings of Parkinson ‘s disease. After finding a neurologist and some testing I was diagnosed with the beginning stages of Parkinson’s disease. That was 4 years ago. I took Sinimet four times a day to control my symptoms, which include falling, imbalance, gait problems, swallowing difficulties, and slurring of speech, A year ago, I began to do a lot of research and came across a Parkinson’s HERBAL TREATMENT. After seeing positive reviews from other patients, I quickly started on the treatment, I experienced significant reduction/decline in major symptoms, including tremors, muscle weakness, speech problems, difficulty swallowing, balance problems, chronic fatigue and others, The truth is you can get off the drugs and help yourself by trying natural methods, i live symptoms free.

    • Emu Kisekka

      When my big toe gave me a warning sign and kept on swelling and aching and healing on its own, I had no idea what was in store for me as I did not seek any medical advice. Then one morning in April last year, when I woke up and was in excrutiating pain in all the joints in my legs and could not walk, did I go see a doctor, when after various tests, I was told I had gout.

      The doctor put me on medication – febuxostat, colchicine and some other pain killer, as well as muscle relaxers. I of course thought I would be up and going in a week or so. Well it is only now, nine months since I had my attack that I realise that gout is a terrible disease. I’m still on drugs which don’t seem to be doing much, I’ve become a vegetarian not daring to even take a piece of meat ( before I could not take a meal without meat) and my mobility has been completely been affected. I can just manage to hobble about for a few steps before I quickly look for somewhere to sit down. My left knee has been most affected and it is in permanent pain. I was an outdoors person, now I’ve become domesticated and don’t go outdoors at all unless necessary or going to work.

      I need your advice. Will I become normal again?

      • Spiro Koulouris

        Hi Emu!

        I would seek a couple of different opinions from rheumatologists on what they would recommend. It sounds that you really have a bad and advanced stage of gout but you may also have rheumatoid arthritis as well in other parts of your body. Uric acid can be managed with the correct dose of medication and the right medication. Please go seek some opinions from different specialists. Other then that stick with your vegetarian diet, do not eat fried although it is vegetarian. Abstain from alcohol, sugary beverages and processed food.

        I wish you luck my friend!

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