Link Between Parkinson’s and Pesticides

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Over the years, several studies have pointed to a link between
Parkinson’s disease and exposure to pesticides.

Parkinson’s is a chronic, irreversible disease that affects 1% of
people over the age of 65 worldwide. Actor Michael J Fox and
boxing legend Mohammed Ali are sufferers. The illness occurs when
brain cells that produce a chemical called dopamine malfunction
and die. Symptoms include tremors, stiffness, slow movement, and
poor coordination and balance.

New research at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland had
revealed that the more pesticides gardeners are exposed to, the
more likely they are to develop the degenerative brain disease.

Anthony Seaton and his team in Aberdeen interviewed 767
Parkinson’s sufferers and 1,989 healthy people about risk factors
for Parkinson’s, including their use of pesticides.

They found that people with Parkinson’s were more likely to have
used pesticides. Amateur gardeners were 9% more likely to suffer
from the disease than non-pesticide users. Farmers were 43% more

Your healthiest option is to not use any pesticides at all in
your garden or around the house. Check with your local nursery,
garden supply store or pest exterminator for non-toxic substances
that can control insects on your property.

If you find that you must use chemical pesticides, be sure to
wear protective clothing. If you are spraying, also wear a mask
that will screen out chemicals in the air you breathe.

Source: Coghlan, A, Exposure to Pesticides Can Cause Parkinson’s,
New Scientist, May 26, 2005