© Whole Foods Magazine
Controlling Parkinson's Disease with Supplements:
Part:3 The Patients Speak Out
by Richard A. Passwater, Ph.D.
This article will tell how a nutritional supplement protocol has stopped the tremors and other symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD) and turned back the clock to healthier days for PD patients and their families. Nothing else can do this. I repeat, all of the neurologists that I have interviewed and who have witnessed the success of--_ the Cochran Regimen verify that nothing else at their disposal can do what the Cochran Regimen does.
Yes, there are drugs to treat PD, but no one of these, nor any combination of them, can achieve what the Cochran Regimen routinely does. In this interview, Tim Cochran and I will discuss the case histories of patients who have gone from incapacitated to better than normal. Still, the PD is not cured in these patients, but the majority now lead normal lives once again-as if time had been turned back to when they had a better quality of life.
As an example, I will chat with a 67-year-old PD patient, Dr. Shirley Lacy, who won a football field goal kicking contest two weeks prior to this writing. You will have to admit that she now has a higher quality of life than if she were confined to a wheelchair.
In Part 1, we discussed the disease and its conventional treatments. In Part 2, we heard from Tim Cochran about the biochemistry of his regimen. Now I want to discuss some of the success stories of those whose lives were returned to near normal by the Cochran Regimen for Parkinson's disease.
Passwater: Tim, I have read the medical histories of many of those who were helped by your regimen and I have even seen videotapes showing PD patients before starting your regimen and then again at several stages of treatment. As I said in Part 1 of this series (December, 2000), I consider PD a horrible, horrible disease. I am most impressed with the improvement in the quality of life produced by the nutritional supplements in the Cochran Regimen. May I interview the PD patients and their family members?
Cochran: Please be my guest.
Passwater: In Part 2 (January, 2001), you mentioned the general response patterns experienced by patients using the Cochran Regimen to combat PD. In this segment, I will report on examples of each. Most respond immediately and rapidly. A good example is Dr. Shirley Lacy who was mentioned briefly in the January installment. Dr. Lacy is a 67-year-old who has had PI) since 1992. She has two Masters Degrees and a Ph.D. in clinical counseling from North Texas State University. She is a licensed clinical nutritionist, a licensed professional counselor and a licensed chemical dependency counselor. She has been a principal investigator in research projects studying the biochemistry of hyperactive children, as well as alcoholics, doing testing and then nutritional intervention. She has used nutrition intervention for 20 years with various types of patients.
You sent me a videotape showing Dr. Lacy before starting your protocol and at several stages during the Cochran Regimen. She is shown before treatment, as well as at three weeks and two and one-half months after starting the program. Where she is shown before going on the Cochran Regimen, she describes her symptoms, and the viewer can witness the stiffness and notice major discoloration on both legs in the ankles due to blood pooling. She has serious trouble trying to get out of a chair and walking. Then the tape shows her at six days on the Cochran Regimen. She states that there have been major improvements in her ability to do things. She then shows herself getting out of the chair without any problem and walking with notable improvement.
After she has been on the Cochran Regimen for about 14 weeks, the viewer can see the improvement in facial coloring and appearance. She states that she now is able to do things that were not possible before the Cochran Regimen. We then see her riding a bike up and down the street, turning around, slowing down to nearly a complete stop, demonstrating her balancing ability, and then starting up again without falling. There is no tremor observable in her right hand while she is riding the bike.
The next scene on the tape shows Dr. Lacy sitting on a bench-like chair in a shopping mall. She gets up normally and walks away from the camera normally, with full and rapid steps. There no longer are signs of PD in her walk. Her legs, knees, ankles and feet appear normal. Then she returns toward the camera from about 25 yards away. There are no apparent signs of PD except for a slight tremor in her right hand. The hand tremor looks to be only a third of what it was at the beginning of the tape. Her arms swing naturally. She quickly goes down a flight of stairs with confidence and leaves the mall. Formerly, she had to go one step at a time, taking a step with one foot and dragging the other, while holding on to the handrail. She returns to thank the Cochran Regimen for giving her life back.
Dr. Lacy, how did you learn that you had PD?
Lacy: I began noticing symptoms of Parkinson's disease about six years ago when I started falling on the ski slopes. Gradually, the symptoms became more pronounced. I had extreme fatigue, loss of balance, a shuffling walk and fell a lot, injuring myself. I had a hard time getting out of a car and getting up from a chair. I had a hard time going up or down stairs. I could not bend over to pick something up from the floor or tie my shoes. I developed severe pains in toes on my left foot, left leg, right side of my head, right arm, and right shoulder. My right hand started shaking. I was given PD medications but did not find enough benefit to outweigh the side effects. As conditions worsened, I went for treatment and started attending PD patient meetings.
Passwater: I see from your case history that your physician, Dr. S. C. of Texas, noted in part, "Dr. Lacy was evaluated this date and I find that she has unilateral Parkinson's disease with pill rolling motion quite actively in her right hand, characteristic rigidity and petit de pas."
If I may ask, how did you learn about the Cochran Regimen?
Lacy: While attending one of the PD patient support meetings, which are meetings where patients encourage each other and learn how other people deal with their PD-related problems, I saw one man who really was improving. His name was Bill Hipp, and he told me about the Cochran Regimen. Since I have worked with nutrients for 20 years with hyperactive children, as well as with alcoholics and drug addicts, and had seen miraculous changes in these clients, I thought that I would be a good candidate to try a nutritional treatment. By the way, as you know, a combination of vitamin C and L-glutamine three times a day really helps alcoholics to say "no" to alcohol. This lesson was taught to us by my fellow Texan and one of your colleagues, Dr. Roger Williams, in his book Alcoholism: The Nutritional Approach (University of Texas Press 1959).
Passwater: You began the Cochran Regimen on June 9, 1998. Did you notice any immediate results?
Lacy: Oh, yes. I had more energy right from the start. Then after about a week, 1 could walk a great deal better. I could walk much faster and I did not drag my feet. My balance was better. Not only did 1 have a great deal more energy, but my brain seemed to work better.
Passwater: Can you give us any specifics?
Lacy: On the first Sunday, my husband Larry and I went to a movie in the afternoon, then to dinner with a friend. At 9 o'clock that evening, I was using electric hedge clippers to cut the hedges in front of the house. I was not tired when finished.
Passwater: Did you continue to improve?
Lacy: After I had been on the Cochran Regimen for about seven weeks, my hand stopped shaking once for about four minutes and another time for about 10 minutes. All the pain, except in my right arm and right shoulder, had disappeared. I could walk faster and without shuffling. I could now swing my right arm when I walked. I used to fall a lot, but wasn't falling any more.
I could go up and down stairs faster and better. I used to go up the steps slowly, placing my right foot on the step above and then bringing the left foot up to the same level. I could once again bend over and tie my shoes and pick things off the floor. I was able to get up from a chair or out of the car with less difficulty.
I used to have to take naps in the afternoon because I would be exhausted by then. After several weeks on the Cochran Regimen, I had about 80% more energy and could once again work full time. On a trip to Colorado, I walked two and one half miles. These kinds of things would have been impossible for me to do before the Cochran Regimen.
By early August, I was able to ride a bike again. On August 1, I rode my bicycle two miles. On August 8,1 rode my bike four miles. On August 9, I rode six miles. This is a bicycle that has foot brakes and no gears. I consider that pretty good for somebody who, not long before, could barely walk. I regained strength in my legs and have more energy.
Passwater: Did your progress continue without setbacks?
Lacy: No. Unfortunately, my husband became ill and then died of cancer. As you can understand, that was a very trying time, and I discontinued the Cochran Regimen for a while. When the symptoms started gradually to return, however, I went back on the regimen and restored my energy, rapidly improving to the level I had reached earlier. I do not take other medication because I fear the side effects.
Passwater: Bill Hipp, of Irving, TX, is our next interviewee. Bill, identified by Dr. Lacy as the I'D patient who alerted leer to the Cochran Regimen, also appears on the videotape. What is so striking is the exuberance and excitement Bill proudly displays as he demonstrates what he can do now compared to what he could do before the Cochran Regimen. The video begins by showing his improvement in walking ability. He can be seen walking more normally. After three months on the Cochran Regimen, his left arm shows noticeable improvement in swing and movement. There is significant improvement in his ability to speak and turn his head, and he now has normal facial expressions. Also, as a surprise on the tape, Bill does several deep knee bends and jumping jacks to demonstrate that he once again can participate in calisthenics. And this is with his medication reduced by 50% to 80%.
That's enough of me talking about him; now let's talk with him. Bill, how did you learn of the Cochran Regimen for PD?
Bill Hipp: From your columns in WHOIE Foods. When I read your comments in the April 1998 issue, I contacted the Cochran Foundation of Medical Research.
Passwater: But Bill, your case report says you're an accountant. How did you get hold of my columns?
Hipp: I am a CPA with an accounting firm, but I also own a health food store. I have a capable staff, but I have a great interest in nutrition. So I visit my store frequently and read all I can.
Passwater: I'm glad my work was influential. So, when did you begin the Cochran Regimen, and did it bring you any noticeable improvement?
Hipp: I started the program on June 9, 1998.1 could tell it was a winner right away. Two hours after taking the Cochran Regimen, I noticed a definite boost in energy and stamina, as evidenced by my finding it easier to start walking. Also, both my wife Rita and I observed that my back was straighter while I walked.
When I visited my doctor six weeks later, he was very impressed with my
improvement. As I was walking out of his office, he said, "If I had to use one word to describe your improvement, it would be WOW!." He repeated it in front of two nurses out front and told them, with a big grin on his face, that "Bill's PD has gone into regression!"
By then, the distance that I could walk without stopping was 200 yards. Six weeks before, the maximum distance that I could walk was less than 40 yards. My posture is better; I'm no longer stooped over. I am once again able to go outside and get the morning paper.
Passwater: Have the improvements continued?
Hipp: Yes. I had an old football injury that used to give me headaches and cause periodic pain in my neck at the C3 and C4 vertebrae levels. This pain had been with me every five or six weeks since the 1960s and lasted for three days each time it struck. The pain was debilitating while it lasted. Once I was on the Cochran Regimen, however, the pain has diminished in intensity. For a while, it was no more than a "tightness." I was able to continue my regular activity schedule. And now the pain has disappeared. This unexpected result is greatly appreciated.
Passwater: How would you characterize your current status?
Hipp: I am stabilized at a level that has turned back time for me. I get around well, and I'm free from pain. I still have some lower back rigidity that limits my walking somewhat. I still lake some medication, but its been greatly reduced to a level where I no longer experience side effects.
Passwater: May I ask your wife what she has noticed about your improvement?
Passwater: Rita, there are some notations in Bill's case history that he didn't mention. Are there any one or two things you can add to his comments about the early improvements?
Rita Hipp: Well, he didn't mention that riding in a car-even as a passenger-was a problem before he began the treatment. And now he drives. Before the Cochran Regimen, while riding in a car, he frequently would remain expressionless, staring straight ahead. When something was mentioned that he could only see by turning his head, he did not move. Right after beginning the Cochran Regimen, Bill lost that horrid "Parkinson's mask" that froze his face without a smile. He was able to turn his head and initiate conversation in a manner that indicated enjoyment in the interaction.
Within a few weeks, Bill's talking was more easily understood because his breathing was more relaxed. Eventually, his breathing became normal, which was quite an improvement over the gasping, burping difficulties of the past.
Within months of beginning the Cochran Regimen, Bill was driving approximately 60 miles (30 miles each way) to work. I started working so that we could drive together. I was comfortable riding with him. His alertness and responses were normal. What an improvement! Also, before treatment, his condition and the side effects of the medication had become so bad that they were limiting our visits to see Bill's room. In November 1998, however, he made 400mile round trips each week to visit leis mother who had suffered a stroke. He could not have made these trips by himself six months earlier.
In short, the Cochran Regimen has rolled back the calendar and is giving us
more good time to enjoy together. I hope others can experience the phenomenal improvement Bill has experienced. You cannot imagine what a difference this has made in our lives! Words are inadequate to capture the thankfulness, excitement, encouragement and sheer joy that well up when I think of the help that the Cochran Regimen has been to Bill.
Passwater: Now let's chat with another PD patient, Steve Goldstone of Upper Grand View, NY, who had suffered from violent tremors for about six years before starting the Cochran Regimen. Steve, how did you learn about the Cochran Regimen?
Goldstone: Although I had been examined and treated for Parkinson's by two neurologists, it was my family physician who told me about the Cochran Regimen. At the time I began the program about a year ago, I had mild-to-moderate PD with violent, intense tremors on my right side.
Passwater: What happened when you began the nutritional treatment?
Goldstone: During the first week, the first visible change was the restoration of strength in my voice. Virtually everyone I spoke with noticed that my speech was more powerful and, essentially, back to normal. This was followed relatively quickly by improvements in energy, stamina, memory and lessened fatigue. The changes were amazing. I would call them just short of miraculous.
Passwater: Was there further improvement with time?
Goldstone: Yes. I had had a tremor on my right side (hand, arm, and leg) since the beginning seven years ago. When I started taking the Cochran formulation, there was no notable change in the tremor. It was still necessary for me to lake Sinemet every two and one-half to three hours, like clockwork.
Approximately 9 to 10 weeks after starting the Cochran Regimen, I noticed a disruption in this schedule. There were days when I could wait for four to five hours between doses, and the need for external l-dopa was erratic. Then, just after Christmas 1999, an exceptional event occurred. The tremor (did not start for some 20 hours. On the day after Christmas, my tremors stopped at 3 o'clock in the afternoon and then resumed, at a reduced level I should add, after 10:30 the following morning.
On January 20, 2000, an even more exceptional event occurred. I could wait 36 hours between doses of my medication instead of three hours. After that, I returned to a three-hour schedule with this exception-approximately every other day, I could delay the scheduled Sinemet dosage and I began hoping that this would continue to improve. Like an ice glacier melting in warm water, the tremors were subsiding in an erratic, but steady way.
Passwater: You now have been on the regimen one year. How are you doing?
Goldstone: Last week, I was examined by one of my neurologists whom I hadn't seen in a year and a half. After extensive testing, he affirmed that my coordination hasn't deteriorated in that time. Just as important to me is the fact that the Cochran Regimen has greatly reduced my tremors. When I awake now at about 7 a.m., I am tremor-free. I take the Cochran mixture about an hour after rising and remain tremor-free until mid-afternoon. I can take my morning jog and go about my normal activities until about 2:30 p.m.. at which time I need to take my first Sinemet of the day. From then on I stay on Sinemet until going to bed. Essentially, it's the Cochran Regimen in the morning and traditional medication in the afternoon and evening.
However, I usually wake up in the middle of the night because of tremors. They used to be violent and frequent even while sleeping. They used to wake me up every couple of hours, that is those times when I could fall back to sleep. Now, whenever I am awakened by a tremor, all that I have to do is put a one gram tablet of glutathione under my tongue to control the tremor. I also take a sleeping pill, and I am back asleep within 30 minutes and sleep for the rest of the night.
Passwater: Now let's look at a long-term PD patient from the viewpoint of the patient's husband, Robert Goldfarb. His wife Jean has had PD for about 14 to 15 years, and as so often happens, the disease responded to conventional medications for about seven or eight years. Then these drugs became ineffective, and she developed serious adverse effects. Robert, please tell us what happened at that point?
Goldfarb: She declined seriously during the next five years. It is devastating to watch your wife deteriorate before you. She no longer could tolerate any medication. She had become paranoid, and the medicines worsened her mental condition and caused dementia. We had nothing in terms of a quality of life.
Finally, Jean's physician suggested the Cochran Regimen. She had always been interested in nutrition and decided to give it a try. Immediately, her alertness and color improved. Her healthy, pink (even rosy) complexion returned, and her facial expression lost some of its "mask-like" look. For the first time in a long time, she occasionally was able to rise from the bed and chairs unaided, and climb a flight of stairs on her own (though most of the time she still needed help to perform these activities). Her incontinence lessened, her vocabulary increased, and she used words and expressions I hadn't heard her use in a long time. She became more aware of her surroundings; for example, once when I sneezed, she responded with "God bless you." She asked my daughter how she was feeling, something she had not done for years. She was generally more cheerful. Her cognitive awareness improved by about 25% to 30% right at the start.
Passwater: Did she continue to improve with time?
Goldfarb: Well, she did for the next four months, but she developed a dislike for the flavor of the nutrient mixture and discontinued the Cochran Regimen. She again deteriorated substantially.
Fortunately, about eight or nine months later, the taste of the mixture was improved and Tim Cochran called to let us know. She has been back on the regimen for about three months now, and the PD deterioration has once again been halted. She is holding her own since she restarted and is now beginning to show improvement.
She can stand again and is more communicative. She is not drooling anymore. Clearly, she is not getting any worse and, more significantly, is showing hopeful signs once again. There is nothing else for her. At least, the Cochran Regimen gives us hope for some recovery It is quite miraculous to see that the tide has been stemmed. I certainly can attest to the efficacy of the Cochran Regimen. We are very thankful to Tim Cochran and his PD regimen.
Passwater: Thanks for sharing this information with us. At this point, I am going to shift my questions to a medical researcher. I have read the physicians' case histories and their comments about the PD patients discussed here and several other patients as well. I know two of these physicians and have great respect for their skills and their accuracy. They regularly use nutritional supplements as adjuncts in their practice. Now I want to turn to another physician who is not treating PD patients, but who knows about the success of the Cochran Medical Foundation and can offer another point of view on the program.
The most exciting book that I ever read was co-authored by my friend Dr. Bill Regelson of the Medical College of Virginia. I never will forget my excitement as I read The Superhormone Promise on a flight between Tokyo and San Francisco in 1996. I hardly could wait for the plane to land so that I could follow up on his program. I don't have the space here to present a full biography of Dr. Regelson, but most readers are familiar with his work. What impresses me is that he still is actively engaged in research today and, beyond this, that he continues to look more than 20 years younger than his 76 years.
Dr. Regelson, Tim Cochran has stated that his research is built on the shoulders of my research with supernutrients and your research with superhormones. I know that you, like I, have followed his research closely. Have you visited any of his PD patients?
Regelson: Yes. For me, his regimen takes on special meaning in relation to my own experience in interviewing three PD patients who have been helped by the program. That is enough, I know the disease and trust his integrity in relation to his reports of responses in other patients. Although I haven't seen his stage IV cardiac patients, his reports of once-dying heart patients riding bicycles have to be taken seriously.
Passwater: Fortunately, the physicians running the clinical trials also made videotapes of several of the patients before and after treatment with the Cochran Cardiac Regimen.
The Cochran Medical Foundation is supported solely by the contribution of Tim Cochran. In essence, he has reached into his own pocket to pay for several expensive clinical trials. He wants to publish his research in medical journals, but does not want to do so until one more set of clinical trials is run. In the meantime, the medical establishment remains very skeptical. However, right now, there are people who might be helped if they just could convince their physicians to work with the Cochran Regimen. Nevertheless, there is a reluctance for most to do so. Why do you think this is?
Regelson: As an academic, a professor of medicine, who has spent the bulk of my life in drug development for the treatment of cancer and the goal of successful aging, I can tell you that Cochran's "polypharmacy" (75 ingredients at one time) constitutes "heresy!" Physicians usually don't like biochemists working with their patients. But Louis Pasteur was a chemist. He may not have known much about formalized medicine, but look at what he accomplished. Cochran must be taken seriously by those of us in academia who influence the medical decision-making of our patients. The bottom line is that Cochran's Regimens certainly appear to help patients who often have no other recourse.
Meanwhile, the polypharmacy approach continues to be a problem for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the drug industry and my colleagues in medicine who prefer to study only one variable or ingredient at a time to isolate its actions. It nay be that in PD or heart disease only a portion of the mixture is doing the job, but can we delay the needs of the debilitated and I lie dying to find out which of the 75 ingredients are the keys? Who will pay for the research to find the most effective
ingredients in the Cochran Regimen?
Passwater: Most of my research has been focused on the synergism of antioxidant nutrients (see US Patent # 5,090,414). I believe and teach that nutrients work best together, not singly. In your book, you certainly make the case for optimizing all of the superhormones, rather than focusing on one. Chinese herbology is based on the synergism of multiple herbs working together. All holistic physicians use combinations of nutrients, not single nutrients. The human cell is not a test tube in which you can independently study one nutrient at a time with significant meaning; it is a complex system involving many interactions dependent on many other cofactors in the cell. The scientific principle of varying only one factor at a time is appropriate for simple systems. It fails in the human system. All of the raw materials that the cells need, plus their chemical instructions on how and when to assemble these nutrients, must be there together at the same time.
Regelson: That's right. Testing one drug or nutrient at a time, while a good way to meet bureaucratic assumptions, is not necessarily the way to meet human needs. Cochran's approach will open up a refreshing view to clinical exploration.
Cochran is correct in his approach. In PD he is focusing on improving the cell's content of the antioxidant glutathione. The secret is getting more glutathione inside of the neural cells, not just into the bloodstream. I hope that more neurologists will take note of Cochran's PD findings.
Passwater: When we neared the end of our conversations about PD, Cochran showed me two faxes that he recently received from patients who had apparently beaten cancer while on the Cochran regimen. I will follow up on these cases and others in a future article.
In closing, I want to thank Tim Cochran and his PD patients for sharing their experiences. I also wish to thank Dr. Regelson for his observations. In looking over the case histories and speaking with many of the PD patients, it is apparent to me that all have been helped, especially in terms of improved quality of life. Most have greatly reduced symptoms and many have improved to the point where they now show no signs at all of having PI). I am pleased that some of our readers with PD have benefited from the Cochran Regimen. Tim, please keep us informed of your progress. Readers may contact the Cochran Medical Foundation by email at Cochran-Foundation@worldnet.att.net or by fax at (909) 338-40111. WF
© 2001 Whole Foods Magazine and Richard A. Passwater, Ph.D.
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