It’s another headline about caffeine, and how it may positively impact another disease. A new study, one with few predecessors, has found that caffeine may improve the motor abilities of people with Parkinson’s symptoms.
Why is this interesting? It’s not exactly the expected result (coffee jitters, anyone?). One of Parkinson’s symptoms is sleepiness, and the study was meant to test to see if caffeine could help improve that symptom. Of course they also watched for how it might affect other Parkinson’s symptoms, and found that those who received the caffeine pills fared much better with motor ability than those without.
Since caffeine barely impacted daytime alertness or nighttime sleep quality (like it would in anyone receiving the doses given in the trial), the mechanism of the effect will likely be very important to the development of future medications for Parkinson’s symptoms. It’s affecting something differently than we expected—and that’s a path to better treatments!
Minimally, caffeine may be useful as an additional treatment so that current medications and their side-effects can be reduced. It will just require some bigger trials.
Don’t have Parkinson’s Disease? Drink caffeine daily? Statistically, you’re less likely to get it!
Sick of hearing about the wonders of caffeine? Excited to hear that your daily cup of joe may have health benefits? Weigh in below!