As we begin to settle into spring, most of us are focused on getting outdoors and soaking up that longed for sunshine.

For the Parkinson’s Foundation, organizers are gearing up for their annual awareness campaign that aims to engage the community and bring understanding and resources to those living with the disease. The second most prevalent neurodegenerative disorder, Parkinson’s Disease (PD) has no cure and current treatment options are symptomatic.

Every year in the United States, nearly 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. It is estimated that by 2020, nearly one million individuals will be living with PD in America. As the prevalence of the disease increases, the efforts of doctors, researchers, and advocates alike to find answers is accelerating.

The Parkinson’s Foundation chose this year’s theme to their awareness campaign as “Key To PD” in an effort to drive awareness and understanding around the disease. With that in mind, we wanted to showcase the key to a healthy plant-based medicine routine.

With plant-based medicines gaining wider acceptance, what are the prospects of using them to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease?

According to a 2016 study published in the Journal of Advances in Neurobiology,  plant-derived natural compounds can provide treatment and relief for both chronic and progressive types of Parkinson’s. The authors noted, “Plant-derived natural products have made their own niche in the treatment of neurological diseases since time immemorial.”

It is true. Western medicine has strayed from phytomedicine, and many long-standing remedies have been out of reach for those suffering from PD in the United States.

One of the hallmark characteristics of PD is a progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons which results in the loss of motor functions and an increase in cognitive decline.

Mucuna plants, often utilized with Ayurveda herbal treatments, are known to contain levodopa – a key Parkinson’s medication that increases dopamine levels in the brain, leading to an improvement in the motor symptoms of the condition.

Several research studies into mucuna plants and Parkinson’s have had positive results and some have even suggested that the plant might have advantages over conventional levodopa preparations in the long term management of Parkinson’s.

With all great things though, there are challenges to overcome. Some of the biggest hurdles facing plant-based medicine is accurate dosing and consistency. An article in Annals of Phytomedicine noted that standardization of products and delivery methods was one of the most prevalent challenges facing those utilizing plant-based medicine.

So how can those suffering from PD find relief in the 21st century with plant-based medicine?

Gofire has developed a technology health suite for plant-based medicine with these specific challenges in mind; creating a way for patients to accurately dose and trust they are receiving a consistent medication.

The Gofire App is a complete medication management platform. With the app you can intuitively monitor dose delivery, track session efficacy, and discover products and dose regimens that work best for you. The Gofire App puts control of your health directly in the palm of your hand.

The app also connects you with a community that has chosen a plant-based medicine routine — and with experts in medicine who are driving this movement forward. Never has it been easier to find relief and information to better your lifestyle.

As you enjoy the spring weather, keep in mind the “Key To PD” may just lie in a plant-based routine and Gofire is helping make that a reality.