A Narrative Review of Lifestyle Factors Associated with Parkinson's Disease Risk and Progression

Neurodegener Dis. 2019;19(2):51-59. doi: 10.1159/000502292. Epub 2019 Sep 5.


Parkinson's disease is a complex slowly progressive neurodegenerative disorder with motor and non-motor symptoms affecting daily living. Despite effective symptomatic treatments, with various degrees of side effects, no disease-modifying therapeutic options presently exist. Symptoms progress, with an accumulating burden, reducing the quality of life and forming the impression that medications are no longer effective. Adopting positive lifestyle behaviours can empower patients, improve the quality of life, alleviate symptoms, and potentially slow disease progression. Lifestyle behaviours including nutrition, cognitive enrichment, physical activity, and stress management have beneficial effects on brain health and quality of life. While some evidence of an association of lifestyle with Parkinson's disease risk and progression exists, the sparse and often conflicting data make it difficult to provide clinical recommendations. Herein, we highlight studies showing promising associations between lifestyle and Parkinson's disease. Given the increasing aging of populations worldwide and the prevalence of neurological disorders, further research into self-management through adoption of positive lifestyle behaviours is clearly warranted to better enable individualized care.

Keywords: Disease management; Lifestyle behaviours; Multimodal treatment; Parkinson’s disease; Quality of life.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cognition / physiology*
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Life Style*
  • Parkinson Disease / psychology*
  • Quality of Life / psychology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Self-Management