In October, 2008, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s. I had been experiencing trembling in my left arm, hand and fingers for two and a half years at that point, and as I was to discover later, other PD related symptoms for over two years before that.
The following is a chronology of the symptoms I am experiencing as best as I can recall, because in several cases, I started experiencing the symptom months before I knew it was connected to PD. I should also mention that I have been experiencing certain PD-related symptoms, sleepiness (I feel sleepy all day), anxiety (in certain situations) and irritability (what working parent doesn’t), for as long as I can remember.
In early spring, I realized that could no longer smell or taste.
I started experiencing a loss of control in my left leg and foot while running. This condition came and went during my runs and got progressively worse, forcing me to switch to cycling in 2005 and give up running completely in 2007.
I took up cycling in 2005 and by 2007 I started experiencing the same symptoms in my left leg.
The index finger of my left hand suddenly started to tremble. It happened one night in February while I was teaching karate. Over the next few months the trembling progressed to my hand and arm, but still only occurred at karate. By the fall, my arm and hand were trembling outside of karate as well.
A slight progression in trembling, but no new symptoms.
Continued slight progression in trembling.
Noticed that I was veering to the right while walking.
Noticed that I was beginning to lose my balance while standing.
I started losing strength, control and dexterity in my left arm, hand and fingers.
Started experiencing constriction in my throat.
Started experiencing slow urination
Accelerated progression in trembling, but still only happening in left arm and hand.
By early early in the year, the trembling had steadily progressed to the point where my left arm and hand were trembling constantly and my right wrist had started trembling as well.
In April of 2010, I was referred to a Body Stress Relief (BSR) therapist in Newmarket, Ontario. BSR, developed by two South African chiropractors, essentially uses a process of pressure points along the spine to relieve muscle tension in the back thereby allowing nerve impulses to flow more freely.
Over the next few months, through bi-weekly BSR treatments, the trembling in my arms diminished by about two-thirds and that’s where it has stayed. Conversely though, I started experiencing tension and pain in my back and neck due to the BSR healing process and this has continued to the present.
Experienced continued loss of strength, control and dexterity in my left arm, hand and fingers, as well as clenching in my left hand.
My reaction time started slowing, particularly on my left side, for example, when putting on left turn signal while driving.
Otherwise, no noticeable progress in other symptoms and no other new symptoms.
Noticed that the trembling and clenching in my left hand were more intense when walking, driving and sitting at the computer, and when I was cold, stressed and fatigued. Contrarily, these symptoms were minimal or non-existent when I lay on my back and when I was in or on water (much like Michael J Fox’s claim that he had no symptoms while he was visiting the country, Bhutan).
Experienced continued loss of strength, control and dexterity in my left arm, hand and fingers. Otherwise, no noticeable progress in other symptoms and no new symptoms.
In January I implemented a more strict diet (no dairy, sweets, wheat, etc) and within three weeks of implementing this new diet, I started to smell things…garlic, coffee, etc, and I began tasting things as well. Then in the spring, I altered my diet by reducing the amount of carbs I was eating and increasing the amount of fat. Of course, the type of fats I’m referring to are the healthy unsaturated fats and omega-3s, not saturated trans fats and omega-6s. This meant more eggs, organic meat, wild fish, organic avocado, coconut & olive oil and nuts & seeds. It also meant less rice, which is where I was getting a lot of my carbs.
Loss of balance became more noticeable, so I didn’t ride my motorcycle in 2012 and I sold it in 2013.
Developed psoriasis on my chest & throat (went away after I went on the fruit diet in Sept ’13 and didn’t come back after switching to the Ketogenic Diet)
Started experiencing more noticeable constriction in throat and a worsening of my balance.
Started experiencing mild trembling in the toes of my left foot while driving and typing at the computer.
Noticed that I was experiencing more intense anxiety in certain situations, such as speaking in front of people.
Experienced continued loss of strength, control and dexterity in my left arm, hand and fingers to the point where I was having a difficult time playing the guitar.
Started experiencing chronic pain in my left shoulder.
No noticeable change in trembling.
I lost approximately 15 pounds over the course of the year, but this could have been due to my change of diet.
In the early part of 2013, I started experiencing light-headedness and dizziness, particularly when standing up.
I also noticed in January that I wasn’t able to walk as fast as normal.
Also around this time, I noticed a loss of overall strength and that I was fatiguing much easier.
Despite my healthier diet, BSR treatments, emotional healing, grounding and exercise routine, my symptoms (particularly the loss of balance and loss of dexterity in my left hand) continued to progress throughout 2012/13 to the point where by the summer, I could no longer type on the keyboard or fret the strings in order to play my guitar.
BSR did help with the constriction in my throat, which was getting worse until the BSR therapist put more focus on it.
Psoriasis on chest & throat went away after I went on the fruit diet in Sept and didn’t come back after switching to the high fat, low carb (Ketogenic) diet.
In the summer, I started experiencing shuffle walking
In the fall, I started experiencing softening of the voice and impaired handwriting.
In Sept, I went on an all fruit diet and lost approximately 10 pounds in six weeks, so I switched to the Keto Diet. I also experienced an intensification of all symptoms (which is common during detoxification) and this carried over to the KD and continues at present.