Breakthrough In Parkinson’s Research? Cinnamon May Stop Its Progression

Parkinson’s Disease sufferers may find some relief if new research focusing on cinnamon pans out. Researchers out of Rush University Medical Center have found what they say “could potentially be one of the safest approaches to halt disease progression in Parkinson’s patients.” Cinnamon can be found on spice racks across the nation, but Rush University scientists tested the common food spice on mice, and the results were astounding, according to Science Daily.

Published in the recent issue of the Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology, the research was supported financially with grants from the National Institute of Health. Dr. Kalipada Pahan said, “Cinnamon is metabolized in the liver to sodium benzoate, which is an FDA-approved drug used in the treatment for hepatic metabolic defects associated with hyperammonemia.”

There are two kinds of cinnamon that are widely used, but Ceylon cinnamon (Cinnamonum verom) is more pure. The Rush University team used this type of cinnamon. The method of treatment application is also really exciting, and non-invasive for patients. The researchers merely fed ground cinnamon to mouse models of Parkinson’s Disease. The cinnamon was metabolized into sodium benzoate. The sodium benzoate entered into the brain. Inside the brain, it stopped the loss of Parkin and DJ-1.

According to CNET:

“Both Parkin and DJ-1 are proteins that have been found to be deficient in the brains of Parkinson’s patients, so it is believed that stopping their loss could slow the progression of the disease.”

The effects from the cinnamon ingestion also included the protection of neurons and the normalization of neurotransmitter levels. Then, amazingly, motor functions of the mice improved.

“Now we need to translate this finding to the clinic and test ground cinnamon in patients with PD,” Dr. Pahan explained. “If these results are replicated in PD patients, it would be a remarkable advance in the treatment of this devastating neurodegenerative disease.”

According to a press release from Rush University, Parkinson’s Disease affects about 1.2 million patients in North America. Interestingly, complimentary and alternative medicine practitioners have claimed that eating cinnamon could fight Parkinson’s Disease for ages. The natural healing community is celebrating this research team’s willingness to look to nature for healing options. The natural healing crowd was elated earlier this year, when a researcher revealed that eating peaches (minus the peach pit of course) slowed breast cancer growth with astounding results.

The next exciting step is to test the effects of eating cinnamon on humans with Parkinson’s Disease.

[Photo by Weinstock via Pixabay]