Oxidative stress is a significant factor in the progression of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Recent studies have revealed the antioxidant properties of molecular hydrogen (H2) in cultured cells and animal models. Drinking H2-dissolved water (H2-water) has been shown to reduce oxidative stress and improve PD symptoms in model animals.
In a placebo-controlled, randomized, double-masked, parallel-group clinical pilot study, the authors evaluated the efficacy of H2-water in Japanese patients with levodopa-medicated PD. Participants drank 1,000 mL/day of H2-water or pseudo water for 48 weeks.
The study found an improvement in the Total Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) scores in the H2-water group (n=9), whereas the scores worsened in the placebo group (n=8). Despite the small sample size and the short duration of the trial, the difference was significant (P<0.05).
This research suggests that drinking H2-water is safe and can significantly improve total UPDRS scores for PD patients.
Dexter DT, Wells FR, Agid F, Agid Y, Lees AJ, Jenner P, Marsden CD. Increased nigral iron content in postmortem Parkinsonian brain. Lancet 1987; 8569: 1219– 1220.
Yoritaka A, Hattori N, Uchida K, Tanaka M, Stadtman ER, Mizuno Y. Immunohistochemical detection of 4-hydroxynonenal protein adducts in Parkinson’s disease. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 1996; 93: 2696– 2701.
Ohsawa I, Ishikawa M, Takahashi K, et al. Hydrogen acts as a therapeutic antioxidant by selectively reducing cytotoxic oxygen radicals. Nat Med 2007; 13: 688– 694.
Ohta S. Molecular hydrogen is a novel antioxidant to efficiently reduce oxidative stress with the potential for improving mitochondrial diseases. Biochim Biophys Acta 2012; 1820: 586– 594.
Fujita K, Seike T, Yutsudo N, et al. Hydrogen in drinking water reduces dopaminergic neuronal loss in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine mouse model of Parkinson’s disease [serial online]. PLoS One 2009; 30: e7247.
Fu Y, Ito M, Fujita Y, et al. Molecular hydrogen is protective against 6-hydroxydopamine-induced nigrostriatal degeneration in a rat model of Parkinson’s disease. Neurosci Lett 2009; 453: 81– 85.
Hughes AJ, Daniel SE, Kilford L, Lees AJ. Accuracy of clinical diagnosis of idiopathic Parkinson’s disease: a clinicopathological study of 100 cases. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 1992; 55: 181– 184.
Nagata K, Nakashima-Kamimura N, Mikami T, Ohsawa I, Ohta S. Consumption of molecular hydrogen prevents the stress-induced impairments in hippocampus-dependent learning tasks during chronic physical restraint in mice. Neuropsychopharmacology 2009; 34: 501– 508.
Shimouchi A, Nose K, Shirai M, Kondo T. Estimation of molecular hydrogen consumption in the human whole body after ingesting hydrogen-rich water. Adv Exp Med Biol 2012; 737: 245– 250.
Ohno K, Ito M, Ichihara M, Ito M. Molecular hydrogen as an emerging therapeutic medical gas for neurodegenerative and other disease [serial online]. Oxid Med Cell Longev 2012; 2012: 353152.