Introduction to L-Dopa supplement (Levodopa)
There have been two Nobel prizes offered in relation to L-dopa. Arvid Carlsson received a Nobel Prize in 2000 and in 2001, William S. Knowles earned one-fourth of a Nobel Prize for Chemistry. The substance was found to have a strong contribution to the alleviation and treatment of Parkinsonian symptoms. It was found that it tended to hinder the development of the symptoms themselves.
L-dopa (levodopa) was introduced to the market in the 1960s. It has mainly acted as the most appropriate therapy medicine for Parkinson’s disease. Levodopa, itself is a natural matter which is present both in animals and plants. L-dopa works in a specific way.
Once it enters our blood it goes through the blood barriers found in the brain and is then decarboxylated. L-dopa is an amino acid which is converted to dopamine, once, in the brain. Levodopa is a precursor to the substance dopamine.
The depletion of dopamine provokes Parkinson’s disease. L-dopa does perfectly focus on increasing the level of dopamine and thus as a consequence, it alleviates Parkinsonian symptoms.
Levodopa is sold as a prescribed drug and a dietary supplement (L-Dopa Supplement) in the United State of America. The drug has been administrated to treat Parkinson’s disease but there are also substances found in levodopa making it a marine adhesive (utilized by pelagic life).
Function and Mechanism of L-Dopa
L-Dopa is consumed orally. Once taken, levodopa, the substance will infiltrate into our biological system. It will effectively bypass the “blood-brain barriers”. Instantaneously as the drug crosses the blood-brain barriers it is converted to dopamine. The increasing rectification of the level of dopamine in the brain results in a positive effect on our mental health. A higher intensification of dopamine is expected to recover the nerves. This very increase in dopamine assists in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. However, dopamine is produced in other parts of our body as well. The dopamine produced in the various other parts is highly linked with adverse effects of levodopa.
Benefits of L-Dopa
- Improves sleep
- Improves mood and well-being
- Increases energy levels
- Reduces body fat (decreases cellulite)
- Decreases wrinkles
- Improves skin texture
- Increases bone density
- Increases lean muscle mass
- Enhances libido
Side-effects of L-Dopa
There are various possible adverse reactions that can be experienced by an L-Dopa supplement. A list of some of the possible consequences has been highlighted below:
- Hair loss
- Amidst some less common
Levodopa is considered to have relatively few side-effects to other drugs created for the same intention such as dopamine agonists and anticholinergics. These drugs carry more deleterious effect in the treatment for Parkinson. Moreover, the volume of the dosage consumed will also be a factor which will highly influence the risk of any negative reactions.
Research on L-Dopa
Research has proven l-dopa to be generally safe for humans. The various research has reported a rise in cytotoxicity markers in rats. Another report depicts that an enhancement of the development of ‘quinones’ through a rise in auto-oxidation and subsequent cell death in mesencephalic cell cultures. These are all positive figures drawn from the research upon l-dopa.
Interactions of L-Dopa Supplement
L-dopa is sensitive to vitamins and other drugs. The presence of vitamin B6 can alter the efficiency of L-dopa. A Large dosage of B6 should thus be avoided while consuming L-dopa. This minor problem can be evaded with the consumption of Sinemet. Furthermore, people who are using other drugs such as tyrosine or phenylalanine might be forced to take a higher intake. A Study has depicted that amino acids products compete among themselves and as a consequence, the effectiveness of an L-Dopa supplement is reduced. This can be accommodated by increasing the dosage of levodopa. A similar relation will sustain with the high or low level of dietary protein intake. It is preferable to balance the diet in accordance with specifications of the medicine. It is thus necessary to consult a professional doctor before evaluating the necessary dose of l-dopa to be consumed.
L-Dopa and Parkinson’s disease
Levodopa is one of several drugs used to treat Parkinson’s disease. A progressive disorder, Parkinson’s disease is associated with the reduced production of dopamine (an important neurotransmitter) by the brain. This, in turn, leads to problems with movement and coordination that worsen over time. Levodopa helps to mitigate movement problems because of its chemical similarity to dopamine. In fact, levodopa is converted into dopamine once inside the body. Levodopa is not a cure for Parkinson’s; it only offers relief of symptoms associated with it.
In general, levodopa is considered the most effective treatment available for Parkinson’s disease and its symptoms. Levodopa is often given in combination with another drug called Carbidopa. This combination is known as Sinemet. It may provide significant benefit for five or more years. Like all drugs used to treat Parkinson’s disease, however, levodopa is associated with certain side effects. Patients may experience stomach upset and vomiting when they first start taking levodopa. Later, long-term problems may develop. Tics, dyskinesia (an impairment of voluntary movements), and unresponsiveness are common after long-term use. Raising a patient’s dosage of levodopa (which is sometimes done when the disease progresses) increases the likelihood of undesirable side effects.
Levodopa is often used before, after, or alongside dopamine agonists, drugs that perform functions similar to dopamine. When a Parkinson’s patient’s symptoms progress, dopamine agonists can be used to augment levodopa treatment in lieu of raising the dosage of levodopa. For some patients the combination of levodopa and dopamine agonists may prevent the undesirable side effects that can occur when taking higher doses of levodopa alone.
What is Parkinson’s disease?
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive condition in which the part of the brain responsible for controlling movement stops functioning properly. As the nerve cells in this area of the brain deteriorate, production of an important neurotransmitter, dopamine, declines. With diminished levels of dopamine, patients experience problems with balance, muscle control, and movement. Tremors, difficulty walking, and stiffening of the muscles are some of the more common symptoms. In advanced cases, patients may experience depression, hallucinations, and dementia. Parkinson’s disease is most common among people over age 50, but it can affect younger people as well. The cause of Parkinson’s disease is unknown.
Although there is no known cure for Parkinson’s disease, treatment can help control symptoms and improve patients’ quality of life. Medications, such as Levodopa, are usually the first treatments administered. Other drugs, such as dopamine agonists or antihistamines, may be needed to help offset the side effects of the primary treatment drugs. Patients with Parkinson’s disease are encouraged to follow healthy eating and exercise habits. Physical therapy and counseling may boost independence and help patients cope with their disorder. Surgery is used much less frequently but may be performed in an attempt to alleviate tremors and other problems.
General Information about L-Dopa
Levodopa does increase the concentration of dopamine. The consumption of levodopa together with Carbidopa assures that l-dopa will properly enter into the brain. Carbidopa does thus allow users to consume lower volumes of the drug. This will restrain the risk of possible side-effects such as vomiting or nausea. The recommended combinations of drugs used together with levodopa are Sinemet or Atamet consumed concurrently with carbidopa. This is the standard prescription to Levodopa.