Thursday, April 11, 2024

Can Diabetes Affect Your Memory

Must read

What Is The Outlook

Diabetes-Induced Memory Loss: Signs And Prevention | FYI

Once your doctor has determined the cause of your memory loss, theyll work with you to create your treatment plan. This may include lifestyle changes if youre at risk for or have already been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

If AD causes your memory loss, your doctor may recommend cholinesterase inhibitors to start. These inhibitors tend to delay the worsening of symptoms and can improve functionality in people with dementia. Depending on how the disease is progressing, they may prescribe additional medication.

Does Sugar Make Dementia Worse

Generally not. Sugar doesnt make dementia worse. You can eat a piece of cake and its not going to increase your risk of dementia.

Chronic sugar, too much sugar does a lot of things. So, if you translate too much sugar into obesity, then yes, obesity makes dementia worse.

You could give a dementia patient a piece of cake. Thats not a problem. But you dont want dementia patients to be obese or if you notice sundowners syndrome changes in behavior in late afternoon or early evening you may want to cut back on caffeine and sugars.

What Develops First: Alzheimers Or Diabetes

Well, its a chicken and egg question. But typically diabetes comes first. Early onset diabetes or type 2 diabetes patients know that you live with that for years.

Its a chronic disease and if not treated properly, it will increase your risk of Alzheimers. So, its not surprising to see such a high percentage of Alzheimers patients also having diabetes.

On the other hand, if you have Alzheimers you may not take care of yourself and develop diabetes.

One of the challenges of managing dementia patients is medication management. If a patient doesnt have a caregiver, they may not remember to take their meds.

So, whether you have diabetes or high blood pressure , you may be unable to manage your meds and your disease could progress to fatal levels.

You May Like: Low Glycemic Meal Plan For Diabetics

Understanding Diabetes Memory Loss And How They Are Linked

To understand the relationship between memory loss and diabetes, you have to understand how diabetes affects the body.

Diabetes is a condition in which the body is unable to produce enough insulin to effectively control blood glucose levels. Your body may also produce insulin but is unable to use it to balance blood glucose levels. This type is known as type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes usually occurs from birth or at an early age. Glucose levels in the blood affect many bodily functions, such as energy levels and vascularity.

Memory loss is pretty self-explanatory, but there are different types. Moderate memory loss is normal as we age. Things like forgetting small details, where you placed certain items, or even names are all examples of natural, normal, age-related memory loss. You can use various methods to boost your memory to combat this natural form of memory loss.

On the other hand, there is very little currently known that can boost your memory, if you have Alzheimers Disease or dementia. These are cognitive conditions in which an accelerated loss of memory and cognitive function occurs faster and starker than natural, age-related memory loss.

Diabetes Problems And Brain Fog Starts With Blood Sugar

Poor Memory

Diabetes begins with insulin and blood sugar. When we eat, glucose is created during digestion. It enters the bloodstream where its joined by a hormone called insulin. Insulin helps glucose leave the bloodstream and enter the cells for energy. Glucose is the main source of energy for the brain

In diabetes, there is a problem with both glucose and insulin that leads to a host of problems. Glucose needs insulin to enter the cells, but in diabetes either the body cant make insulin, doesnt make enough, or cant use its insulin correctly. As a result, glucose remains in the bloodstream and accumulates. High blood sugar does extensive, system-wide damage. Low blood sugar , a result of diet and/or medication, also causes damage. These blood sugar problems impair functioning in the brain and can cause brain fog and memory loss.

Blood sugar fluctuations affect neurotransmitter levels. High blood sugar increases serotonin and GABA, causing fatigue. Low blood sugar causes the brain to make more cortisol, glucagon, and adrenalin in an attempt to counteract hypoglycemia. Stress increases, and concentrating and focusing become more difficult.

The fluctuations between blood sugar extremes can leave you feeling tired yet wired, and your brain can have a hard time adjusting to fluctuations. In addition to the impact on neurotransmitters, fluctuating blood sugar leads to:

  • Brain cell damage and degeneration
  • Inflammation of the brain
  • Injury to neurons due to insufficient glucose supply

Don’t Miss: Is Bluechew Safe For Diabetics

How To Prevent Brain Fog With Diabetes

Preventing symptoms of brain fog with diabetes starts with keeping a stable blood sugar level.

This helps balance brain chemicals in your brain, as well as prevent blood vessel damage that can lead to cognitive problems.

If you believe your brain fog is medication-induced, speak with your healthcare provider. They may switch you to another drug or adjust your dosage to prevent low blood sugar.

The good news, though, is that brain fog isnt usually permanent, so you can reverse mental fatigue with the right treatment.

Remember, too, brain fog isnt a medical condition. Its a symptom of unstable blood sugar.

A healthier diet and adjustments to your medication can help you manage the underlying cause of brain fog and improve cognitive function.

These measures can also lower your risk of developing future health problems like Alzheimers disease and dementia.

According to research conducted in 2015 on the effect of diabetes on cognitive function, people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes have a 50 percent increased risk of developing dementia.

How Can Diabetes Affect Memory Loss

Memory loss in diabetes can be a short term problem brought on by too low or high blood glucose levels.

During hypoglycemia , for example, you may struggle to remember words. This is not necessarily a sign of a long term problem. In most cases, raising sugar levels over 4 mmol/l should get your memory back to normal.

If memory problems happen at other times and this significantly affects your life, speak to your GP.

Diabetes can increase the risk of developing long-term memory problems if blood glucose levels are less well controlled. High blood glucose levels , over a number of years, can damage the nerves, including those of the brain, which can increase the risk of dementia

Research shows that good diabetes management can help prevent memory problems from developing or advancing.

Read Also: Best Snack For Low Blood Sugar

The Effects Of Diabetes On The Brain

Managing your blood sugar can help keep your body and brain healthy.

Heres something that may blow your mind. Did you know that diabetes can affect your brain? Your brain is sensitive to the amount of glucose it receives. Both high and low blood sugar can damage blood vessels in the brain. Learn how managing your blood sugar can help keep your body and brain healthy.

You probably know that keeping your blood sugar in your target range is key for managing diabetes and preventing complications like heart disease and vision loss. But did you know that episodes of high and low blood sugar can affect brain function? This is because your brain is sensitive to the amount of sugar it receives.

You can help prevent or delay problems by keeping your blood sugar as close to your target levels as possible. Learn about the connection between diabetes and the brain and how managing your blood sugar can help keep your brain and the rest of your body healthy.

Diabetes Of The Brain: How Diabetes Affects The Brain

Can diabetes cause you memory loss?

Diabetes of the brain, sometimes called type 3 diabetes, is a nickname occasionally used to describe Alzheimers disease, a type of dementia that involves significant cognitive decline and progressively worsens over time. While diabetes of the brain isnt an official diagnosis or medical term, it does highlight the connection between the disease and the brain . While much has yet to be discovered, researchers have demonstrated that diabetes affects the brain, usually in harmful, damaging ways.

Ongoing research studies seek to determine how diabetes affects the brain . While many questions remain unanswered, thus far studies implicate diabetes in damage to the brain. Quoting researcher Zhanjun Zhang, MD, Schieszer explains that, All these studies draw us a definite and defined conclusion that type 2 diabetes destroys the central nervous system, especially in the brain.

Lets look at how diabetes affects the brain, both structure and function.

Don’t Miss: How Is An Insulin Pump Installed

Ways To Lower Your Risk Fordiabetes And Protect Your Memory

The great news is that diabetes and prediabetes are preventableand even reversible in many cases and can help protect your memory. Here are 10ways to do it.

  • Ditch all sugar and artificial sweeteners. The refined stuff causes blood sugar levels to spike, and the fake stuff is linked to a higher risk of dementia.
  • Limit high-glycemic, low-fiber foods .
  • Eat smart carbohydrates that are high in fiber and low-glycemic .
  • Skip sodas and sugar-laden energy drinks and opt for still or sparkling water instead.
  • Drink decaffeinated tea and coffee to boost metabolism and lower the risk of diabetes.
  • Eat small quantities of high-quality protein and some healthy fat with every meal to stabilize blood sugar levels.
  • If youre overweight or obese, forget crash diets. Instead, lose weight gradually as you develop healthy habits that will last a lifetime.
  • Make physical exerciseand especially strength traininga part of your daily routine to help balance blood sugar levels. In one study, women who did strength training reduced their incidence of diabetes by 30% compared to women who did no strength training.
  • Spice up your cooking with cinnamon, which has been shown to lower fasting glucose levels, improve insulin sensitivity, and reduce HbA1c
  • Supplement your diet with a high-quality multivitamin/mineral, as well as:
  • omega-3 fatty acids EPA/DHA
  • chromium picolinate
  • alpha-lipoic acid
  • Reach out today to speak with a specialist at 888-288-9834 or schedule a visit online.

    Diabetes And The Brain: Changes And Damage

    Understanding the nature of diabetes can shed light on what goes wrong in the brain.

    • When the body digests food, one of the byproducts is glucose, or sugar.
    • Glucose enters the bloodstream and travels around the body to enter cells and provide energy.
    • The hormone insulin is supposed to escort glucose into the cells of the body, but in diabetes, either the body doesnt make insulin or it doesnt make enough or use it efficiently .
    • Glucose remains in the bloodstream, building too high. This high blood sugar is called hyperglycemia. It damages blood vessels, nerves, and causes extensive damage.
    • Sometimes blood sugar drops too low, a condition called hypoglycemia. This is dangerous, too.

    Problems with insulin and glucose help explain how diabetes affects the brain. Glucose is the brains main energy source, and both hyper- and hypoglycemia can cause harm. When this sugar is stuck in the bloodstream, it cant nourish the brain. It becomes starved of oxygen and nutrients, which compromise physical structures, hormones, and cognitive functioning. Chronic hyperglycemia stresses the brain, damages nerve cells, and harms both large and small blood vessels.

    In diabetes, brain damage can be extensive, affecting areas such as the:

    Other casualties of diabetes include:

    • Reduced total brain volume
    • Changes in white matter

    You May Like: Glucose Numbers For Type 2 Diabetes

    How Can Diabetes Affect Memory

    Memory loss in people with diabetes can be either short-term or long-term.

    During an episode of hypoglycemia , you might have short-term memory loss. This generally resolves when you treat the hypoglycemia and your blood sugar levels return to normal.

    Continual periods of hyperglycemia can cause damage to the nerves in the brain, which results in long-term memory loss. Recent research has shown that, compared with the general population, people with type 2 diabetes have twice the risk of developing dementia.

    Treatment For Brain Fog With Diabetes

    Diabetes And Sudden Memory Loss

    To treat brain fog due to diabetes, its important that your blood sugar levels are in target range as much as possible.

    The goal is to avoid blood sugar fluctuations. This means keeping your blood sugar within a healthy range not too high and not too low.

    If youre prescribed medication to treat diabetes, take your medication as instructed and dont skip doses.

    Also, follow any dietary instructions your healthcare provider recommends. If you feel that your brain fog isnt improving, talk to them.

    Your healthcare provider may need to adjust your medication. Also, it might help to speak with a registered dietitian for guidance on what foods to eat and what foods to avoid with diabetes.

    Managing your diabetes is important because not managing your condition can lead to potentially life threatening complications.

    It can cause:

    Brain fog should improve as your blood sugar returns to a healthy level.

    In the meantime, the following tips can help you cope with cognitive dysfunction.

    Don’t Miss: What Is Diabetic Retinopathy With Macular Edema

    Sweet Memories Or Not A Comparative Study On Cognitive Impairment In Diabetes Mellitus

    • 1Department of Community Medicine, Believers Church Medical College, Thiruvalla, India
    • 2Medical Student, Believers Church Medical College, Thiruvalla, India
    • 3Department of Medicine, Believers Church Medical College, Thiruvalla, India
    • 4Department of Radiation Oncology, Believers Church Medical College, Thiruvalla, India
    • 5Department of Gastroenterology, Believers Church Medical College, Thiruvalla, India

    Introduction: Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus is a modern-day epidemic and dementia has been declared as a global challenge. It is, therefore, worthwhile to investigate the effect that Diabetes has on cognition. Although effective screening is routinely carried out for various complications of Diabetes, its effect on Higher Mental Functions is often overlooked.

    Methodology: A cross-sectional analytical study to assess Cognitive Impairment was carried out on 800 participants, 400 diabetics and 400 non-diabetics attending a tertiary care center. The Addenbrooke’s Cognitive Examination- III was used, which is a validated, highly sensitive tool having a maximum score of 100. Patients with a score < /= 82 were considered to have impaired Cognition. Statistical analysis was done using SPSSv.21. Suitable statistical tests like MannWhitney U, t-test, ROC curve and Logistic regression analysis were done.

    What Is Cognitive Impairment

    A: Cognitive impairment is a decline from usual cognitive abilities. There are different types. The one most people are concerned about is forgetfulness, which is the inability to remember events or learn material. Other types of cognitive impairment are not related to memory or can co-occur with memory problems. These include problems with attention and executive functionthe ability to start, conduct, and finish a complex task.

    You May Like: Why Do You Pee So Much When You Have Diabetes

    Why Is Sugar Important For The Brain

    This hormone regulates blood sugar, which is important because sugar is a main source of energy for many cells. Its also essential for normal functioning of organs, including the brain. In fact, sugar is the brains main source of fuel. So if your blood sugar is out of whack due to diabetes, you may develop brain fog.

    Does Type 2 Diabetes Directly Affect My Memory Loss

    How Diabetes Can Affect Your Brain

    In diabetes, it can happen during episodes of low or high blood glucose levels

    High blood sugars and memory

    High blood sugars over time can lead to atherosclerosis in the brain. When vessels harden in the brain and get blocked or blood flow gets slowed down, the person with Type 2 Diabetes is more susceptible to loss of memory and cognitive deficits.

    Low blood sugars and memory

    Conversely, low blood sugar can also cause short term memory problems as confusion from a low blood sugar sets in. This is remedied by a successful treatment of low blood sugars, and their prevention to avoid confusion and subsequent memory loss.

    Good diabetes management and memory loss from Type 2 Diabetes

    Good diabetes management, and avoidance of low and high blood sugars, while sticking to your targets, can help to prevent acute memory loss from low blood sugars and long-term memory loss from high blood sugars. 3

    Alzheimers disease is strongly connected to high blood sugar levels

    Now, to further understand this connection between Type 2 Diabetes and memory loss, we will look at the results of research into the subject.

    One study in this area showed that both men and women with Type 2 Diabetes had more cognitive decline and memory loss than those without Type 2 Diabetes of the same age bracket. Mental focus, attention levels, and memory were correlational to the blood sugar levels. The higher blood sugars, the more memory loss and confusion that was reported in the subjects.

    You May Like: How Many Carbs Should A Pre Diabetic Eat Per Day

    How Diabetes Affects Your Brain And Memory

    Most people are aware that diabetes is a serious condition that requires care and monitoring. If left untreated or uncontrolled, serious consequences like blindness, kidney failure, and heart disease can result.

    But did you know that diabetes can also affect your memory? In fact, if you have diabetes, you have an increased risk for developing not only memory problems, but dementia and Alzheimers, as well.

    There is scientific evidence linking abnormal insulin levels to cognitive decline, memory issues, and Alzheimers disease.

    To Understand The Relationship Between Memory Loss And Diabetes You Have To Understand How Diabetes Affects The Body

    • The basics of diabetes and what it does
    • The basics of memory loss
    • The difference between normal memory loss and dementia or Alzheimers Disease
    • How diabetes may play a part in memory loss
    • 6 ways diabetes may affect cognition and memory
    • Things you may be able to do to stave off diabetes-induced memory loss
    • Supplements that may be able to help with cognitive function and what to look for in such supplements

    Also Check: How Can I Know If I Am Diabetic

    Can Diabetes Affect Your Memory

    Can diabetes type 2 impact memory? Memory loss and general cognitive impairment, both of which are hallmarks of Alzheimers disease, may be associated with type 2 diabetes. People with diabetes often have blood vessel damage. This injury may result in cognitive difficulties and vascular dementia. These are often associated with AD symptoms.

    Does diabetes create mental confusion? Diabetes may result in delirium when it is inadequately managed. This acute condition of extreme bewilderment and altered behavior is difficult to cure and is connected with an increased risk of long-term cognitive damage and even death.

    Does diabetes interfere with short-term memory? Memory loss may be a temporary complication of diabetes caused by low or high blood glucose levels. During hypoglycemia, for instance, it may be difficult to recall words. This is not always indicative of a persistent issue. In most instances, boosting sugar levels over 4 mmol/l should restore normal memory function.

    I am board-certified in both gastroenterology and internal medicine. In the past, I was chief resident at one of the countrys premier residency programs, Northwestern. Consequently, diabetes is a medical problem that I have managed and struggled with throughout the years. Ive seen patients and close friends struggle with the disease, lose control, and face increasingly severe effects.

    More articles

    Popular Articles