As a person who’s living with Parkinson’s disease (PD), I know how important it is to eat a healthy diet. Staying well-hydrated and consuming nutritious foods can help to build a strong immune system. Eating foods that are high in calcium contributes to strong bones, and reduces the risk of fractures in case of a fall. Fruits and vegetables contain vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients our bodies need; they are imperative to our health whether we eat them raw or use them when we’re cooking with recipes.
Recent research has shown a possible link between peppers and a reduced risk of contracting Parkinson’s. Green, red, and yellow peppers contain very small amounts of nicotine and researchers theorize that nicotine affects some brain cells, giving them protection from this disease. I’m sure you’ll agree that eating food containing nicotine, rather than smoking, is a much healthier way to go.
Berries are another good food for PD. A study published in the Annals of Neurology in 2012 states that eating blueberries and strawberries can help to slow the loss of brain function. Researchers think that the flavonoids contained in berries might also help to prevent PD.
Whether fruits and vegetables can help individuals that already have PD will have to be studied further, but either way you know your body will benefit from eating a variety of these foods. Raw fruits and veggies contain fiber, which helps with constipation that so often occurs with PD. They also contain Vitamins C and E which are good sources of antioxidants. Antioxidants battle free radicals and toxic substances that can damage your brain cells and your heart.
To get the most from eating a diet that includes lots of fruits and vegetables, use a juicer. Whether you make a healthy drink or use the juice in recipes when you’re cooking, you can include every part of the foods, including skin and seeds. That’s something you probably wouldn’t do if you were eating them whole.
For example, let’s look at tomatoes (another food that has been linked to PD prevention); ordinarily, when you’re cooking tomato sauce, you blanch the tomatoes and remove the skin. Then you cook them, and strain out the seeds — you use the remaining pulp according to your sauce recipe.
With a juicer, you put the whole tomatoes in, and you get the whole tomatoes out, in the form of juice. You don’t lose any of the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients contained in the skin and seeds. You can create your own sauce recipes, adding other vegetables such as carrots and celery. Your pasta never had it so good!
Also, with a juicer, you can make your own vegetable juice and save a bundle rather than purchasing it. Your juice will be fresher and more nutritious than the canned or bottled variety. Create new blends of fruit juices or use recipes written expressly for juicers. However you do it, you’ll be feeding your body and your brain.