So if you have Parkinson’s and struggle with what you should eat, here are some general guidelines as provided by top nutritionist Caroline Farrell from Essential Nutrition http://www.essential-nutrition.ie/
Caroline’s General Tips
1. Eat a diverse range of foods. This ensures you consume a range of micronutrients needed and reduces over exposure to common foods associated with food sensitivity and intolerances.
2. Eating regularly helps to stabilise your energy levels. Aim to eat every 2-3 hours and always eat breakfast within an hour of waking to kick start the metabolism after an overnight rest.
3. Make sure you eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables each day. Fruit and vegetables contain antioxidants, which support healthy mitochondria (energy producing cells).
4. Always chose wholegrain starchy carbohydrates (brown rice, quinoa, rye, oats) instead of refined carbohydrates (white bread, white pasta or white rice) as they are higher in fibre, which can support your digestion.
5. Replace saturated fatty acids (red meat and full fat dairy products) with essential fatty acids (oily fish, nuts, seeds, avocados and olive oil). Essential fatty acids may also support healthy mitochondria.
6. Eat in a setting where you feel relaxed. If you are eating in the car, in front of a computer doing work, or on the phone, you are not able to give full attention to eating, and, as a result, you may tend to eat more or eat foods that are not as healthy.
7. Before you eat take time to appreciate the colours and smell of your food. This activates the secretion of digestive enzymes to help you full digest your food.
8. Chew thoroughly. The process of digestion begins in the mouth where enzymes are secreted in saliva to break down food. If we do not properly chew and make our food morsels smaller, we may be subject to indigestion and other digestive problems.
9. Avoid eating large meals too close to sleeping. A small pre-bed snack containing complex carbohydrates and a little protein can help to encourage sleep. Walnut butter on oatcakes is a good option as walnuts have been shown to raise levels of the sleep hormone melatonin.
10. Opt for organic when buying the foods with the highest levels of pesticides. See the top 12 list here: http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary/.
11. Planning in advance will help you to succeed. Write out a menu for the week and a corresponding shopping list. It will save you time in the long run and you can reuse it each week.
12. Shopping online can save time and take the stress out of supermarket shopping.