Yoga, Meditation and Parkinson's | iHanuman


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Yoga, Meditation and Parkinson's

Until the age of 45, Bill McKeever had always been in the best of health. A student of Buddhism since the age of 21, a Yale graduate, the former director of Karmê Chöling, the former vice president of Naropa University, a Shambhala meditation teacher, and the father of four sons, Bill was not the type of person you would expect to be diagnosed with the degenerative neurological disorder known as Parkinson Disease (PD).Yet when his right hand began to inexplicably tremble nine years ago, Bill knew that something was amiss.
So began Bill's journey of living with PD. Joined by the 1.5 million Americans living with PD and the estimated 60,000 new cases that are diagnosed each year, Bill is not alone in his plight. Currently, PD stands as the second-most widespread neurological disease, after Alzheimer's. While the condition usually develops after the age of 65, it increasingly strikes younger victims such as Bill, who are in the prime of their lives.
PD occurs when the nerve cells responsible for producing dopamine (a neurotransmitter that allows smooth, coordinated body movement) die or become impaired. When approximately 80% of these dopamine-producing cells become damaged, the symptoms of Parkinson disease - shaking, slowness of movement, stiffness, muffled speech, and difficulty balancing-appear. The exact cause of this disease is still unclear. In some cases, it can be genetic or induced by environmental toxins and stress.
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