Why Mucuna Is Important
The magic of every therapeutic plant resides in its beneficial, active compounds. The interaction between these compounds is typically responsible for the plant’s favorable effects. In Mucuna pruriens, levodopa, or L-dopa, is a precursor to several neurotransmitters, including adrenaline, noradrenaline, and dopamine.
Mucuna has significant antioxidant action that works in tandem with L-dopa to promote brain health. When L-dopa crosses the blood-brain barrier, it helps to increase brain levels of dopamine, an essential neurotransmitter associated with regulating mood and cognition.
Ayurvedic tradition uses Mucuna pruriens to positively promote mental health and stress response. A study involving 120 men who suffered from psychological stress reported that supplementation with Mucuna significantly eased stress. Researchers also concluded that Mucuna reactivates the antioxidant defense system, an essential biological mechanism necessary for maintaining homeostasis within the body.
Parkinson’s disease is partially characterized by decreased brain production of dopamine, an important neurotransmitter. Because Mucuna positively influences dopamine levels, it’s been an Ayurvedic therapy for centuries. Preliminary research indicates that the natural form of L-dopa in Mucuna provides equivalent (or better) results compared to synthetic levodopa; and without the common side effects of nausea, vomiting, and involuntary muscle movement.