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How Diabetes Increases the Risk of Dementia

Studies that have been conducted in the recent years indicate that diabetes increases the risk of various forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease. For instance, in a Japanese study that was recently published in the journal Neurology, researchers found a strong connection between glucose tolerance and the development of dementia. They noted that previous researchers had employed inconsistent definitions of diabetes and dementia. While diabetes has been linked to the development of other chronic illness later in life, scientists are still working on the best diabetes treatment cure to address this condition that is affecting millions across the United States and the rest of the world.

Glucose Tolerance

In the Japanese case, researchers used an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) as the gold standard for diagnosing diabetic patients. Patients were administered a sugar-loaded drink following a fasting period of 12 hours. After two hours, measurements of how much glucose was remaining in their blood were taken. On the other hand, brain scans of living patients and brain autopsies of deceased patients were recorded.

Study Findings

The study recruited more than 1,000 men and women above the age of 60, and the research followed for 15 years. Researchers made adjustments for other potential risk factors like age and gender.

At the end of the study, researchers found that participants who had been confirmed to be diabetic were almost twice likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease as well as other forms of dementia in comparison to their counterparts who were not diabetic.

Diabetes and Dementia Prevalence

Type-2 diabetes happens to be one the most common metabolic diseases globally with its prevalence continuing to rise every year. About 8% of the U.S. population is living with the condition. While there is still no diabetes treatment cure at the moment, about 80% of type-2 diabetes cases can be prevented through lifestyle changes.

Meanwhile, Alzheimer’s disease prevalence continues to rise, and it’s another feared malady that is expected to rise among the elderly population. Statistics from the Alzheimer’s Association indicate that 5.4 million Americans are already living with the condition. It is projected that the figure will rise to 14 million by 2040, which call for urgent measures to be taken.

Connection between Diabetes and Dementia

About the Japanese study, participants who exhibited stronger resistance to insulin were found to be more prone to developing amyloid plaques. Also, high blood pressure, which is triggered by insulin resistance, led to the production of oxygen-containing molecules that cause cell damage. Plus high blood sugar accompanied by high cholesterol levels in the blood, can trigger vascular dementia, which often results from blocked arteries that can also cause damages to brain cells.

According to Gregory A Jicha, MD, Ph.D., a professor of neurology at Kentucky Neuroscience Institute, who also led the study, their findings emphasize the need to consider diabetes as one of the major potential risk factors for dementia, vascular dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Preventing Dementia with Lifestyle Changes

Recent studies indicate that administration of insulin directly into the brain through a specially designed inhaler can be effective in improving memory and thinking. Being diabetic doesn’t mean that you will get dementia and perhaps the only association between the two conditions calls for lifestyle changes toward healthier habits. By finding an appropriate diabetes treatment cure, the risks of dementia, heart disease and blindness can be significantly reduced. Best lifestyle changes for preventing dementia include:

• Exercise: Engaging in regular exercises can reduce your chances of developing dementia and diabetes. You should aim to exercise for at least 20 minutes a day through workouts that increase your heart rate.
• Healthy diet: Studies have shown that consumption of a healthy diet that is rich in vegetables, low in red meat, and one that incorporates more fish and olive oil can delay dementia by many years.

Supplement to Prevent Dementia

Intellux happens to be one of the most effective remedies for preventing dementia and other mental conditions such as cognitive decline, loss of concentration, memory loss and poor decision making. The manufacturer claims it is clinically approved to boost concentration by 32%, encourage creative thinking, boost cognitive energy and improve memory recall. Also, Intellux increases IQ scores by 47% through the use of natural ingredients. Although there is little information about how Intellux works, there are plenty of positive reviews from users of this supplement that promises to work in days.


Diabetes increases the risk of dementia in some ways that lead to damage of brain cells. Not all diabetic patients develop dementia in advanced age though they are at an increased risk. Exercise, healthy diet and supplementation are some of the most effective ways to prevent dementia, diabetes and other chronic illnesses.


Meighan Sembrano

Meighan Sembrano is an author at Consumer Health Digest. She is a social worker who spends her time searching about health, beauty and lifestyles fitness related articles.