For people with Parkinson’s, certain types of foods are better than others. We’ve put together a collection of our favorite Parkinson’s friendly recipes to serve at your next holiday gathering.

Appetizers

Smokey Baba Ghanoush

Why it’s Parkinson’s friendly: Eggplant has antioxidant properties, which help protect your cells from damage. Baba ghanoush is a middle eastern dish that consists mainly of mashed, cooked eggplant, which makes it easier to swallow. Serve it with raw veggies to get your fiber in or soft bread such as pita. Fun fact: baba ghanoush means “spoiled daddy” in Arabic.

Soup/Salad Course

Asparagus and Tomato Farro Salad

Why it’s Parkinson’s friendly: This salad is chock full of whole grains and veggies, which help with constipation, a symptom of Parkinson’s disease. Plus, spinach is a superfood – a powerhouse loaded with nutrients and antioxidants. Fun fact: spinach is a relative of beets and quinoa.

Lentil and Root Vegetable Soup

Why it’s Parkinson’s friendly: Lentils are legumes and legumes are low in calories and high in fiber – essentials for a balanced diet. Also, the consistency of this soup makes it easier to chew and swallow. Fun fact: Canada grows more than half the world’s lentil crops.

Main Course

Maple and Tamari Glazed Salmon

Why it’s Parkinson’s friendly: Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which our bodies need to function properly. If you’re taking levodopa for your Parkinson’s, be sure to eat your salmon more than 30 minutes before or one hour after taking this medication. Fun fact: Salmon have a very strong sense of smell.

Winter Vegetable Casserole

Why it’s Parkinson’s friendly: This recipe has all the things that are good and good for people with Parkinson’s (and those who love them): olive oil for antioxidants and antiinflammation, and veggies, legumes and a splash of fruit. Fun fact: olive trees have grown in the Mediterranean since 8,000 BC. That’s a long time!

Dessert

Smoothies

Why it’s Parkinson’s friendly: Smoothies cram a lot of nutrition in a single glass. Their consistency makes for easier swallowing and digesting. Plus, you can customize them to your taste and nutritional needs. Fun fact: Smoothies came to the U.S. in the 1930s when health food stores acquired new-fangled technology called an electric blender.

Want more tips on what to eat when you have Parkinson’s? Download our guide, “Healthy Eating for Parkinson’s: Recommendations for Managing Symptoms.” We created this guide in partnership with top nutritionists and health care providers working in the field of Parkinson’s disease.