Diabetes may significantly increase your risk of dementia

September 19, 2011

People with diabetes appear to be at a significantly increased risk of developing dementia, according to a study published in the September 20, 2011, print issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

"Our findings emphasize the need to consider diabetes as a potential risk factor for dementia," said study author Yutaka Kiyohara, MD, PhD, of Kyushu University in Fukuoka, Japan. "Diabetes is a common disorder, and the number of people with it has been growing in recent years all over the world. Controlling diabetes is now more important than ever."

People with diabetes were more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia, such as , which occurs when there is damage to blood vessels that eventually deprive the brain of oxygen.

For the study, a total of 1,017 people who were age 60 and older were given a glucose (sugar) tolerance test after an overnight fast to determine if they had diabetes. Study participants were monitored for an average of 11 years and then tested for dementia. During the study, 232 people developed dementia.

The study found that people with diabetes were twice as likely to develop dementia as people with normal . Of the 150 people with diabetes, 41 developed dementia, compared to 115 of the 559 people without diabetes who developed dementia.

The results remained the same after the researchers accounted for factors such as , and smoking. The risk of dementia was also higher in people who did not have diabetes, but had impaired , or were "pre-diabetes."

In addition, the study found the risk of developing dementia significantly increased when blood sugar was still high two hours after a meal.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Researchers build a digital piece of brain

October 8, 2015

If you want to learn how something works, one strategy is to take it apart and put it back together again. For 10 years, a global initiative called the Blue Brain Project—hosted at the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne ...

Runner's high linked to cannabinoid receptors in mice

October 6, 2015

(Medical Xpress)—A team of researchers from several institutions in Germany has found a link between cannabinoid receptors in mice and what is commonly known as "runner's high." In their paper published in Proceedings of ...

What role does the hippocampus play in memory?

October 6, 2015

(Medical Xpress)—Meet the hippocampus: A seahorse-shaped structure in the cerebral cortex's medial temporal lobe, it's part of the limbic system, generally believed to be involved in spatial navigation and establishing ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.