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Can Low Blood Sugar Cause Memory Loss

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Blood Sugar And Memory

Losing Weight: The Surprising Effect of Low Blood Sugar

Focusing on the hippocampus — the area of the brain associated with memory and learning — Small and colleagues previously identified a section that was most associated with age-related memory decline.

In their newly published study, the researchers looked at how this area, known as the dentate gyrus, is affected by changes typically seen with aging, such as rising cholesterol, body weight, and blood sugar.

Human and animal imaging studies confirmed that rising blood sugar was the only change directly associated with decreased activity in the dentate gyrus.

Because blood sugar levels tend to rise with age, the finding suggests that monitoring and taking steps to lower blood sugar as we grow older may be an important strategy for preventing age-related cognitive decline for everyone, not just people with diabetes, Small tells WebMD.

The study was funded by the National Institute on Aging, the American Diabetes Association, and the McKnight Brain Research Foundation. It appears in the December issue of the journal Annals of Neurology.

“Beyond the obvious conclusion that preventing late-life disease would benefit the aging hippocampus, our findings suggest that maintaining blood sugar levels, even in the absence of diabetes, could help maintain aspects of cognitive health,” Small says in a news release.

Low Blood Sugar Mimics Anxiety

The mutual symptoms of low blood sugar and anxiety are not coincidental. There is a shared physiological base of the two conditions.

When low blood sugar occurs, the body attempts to normalize levels by bringing blood glucose up. It does this through epinephrine excretion, which triggers glucose production in the liver.

Increased adrenaline levels, however, trigger a “fight or flight” response in the body. This same biochemical process is also linked to anxiety.

A longer-term or chronic low blood sugar state can also cause the body to produce cortisol, which is the “stress hormone.” Cortisol helps tissues in the body be less reactive to insulin, which helps increase glucose circulation in the bloodstream.

While this may help raise and normalize blood sugar levels, higher cortisol levels are also linked to anxiety. For this reason, many of the warning signs and symptoms of low blood sugar are shared with that of anxiety.

Otc Remedies That Affect Acetylcholine Levels

Its not just prescription medications that cause acetylcholine deficiency.

Some of the most popular over-the-counter remedies for allergies, insomnia, pain, and acid reflux that affect acetylcholine levels include:

  • Advil PM
  • Benadryl

Seniors who use these drugs long-term increase their risk of mild cognitive impairment and dementia fourfold.

Taking acetylcholine supplements and adjusting your diet while taking anticholinergic medications is like driving a car with one foot on the brake.

If you take any prescription medications that you suspect are causing memory loss, brain fog, or mental confusion, talk to your doctor about reducing or switching medications.

If you are taking over-the-counter anticholinergics, make the necessary lifestyle changes to reduce your usage and look for natural remedies instead.

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Dementia Diagnosis And Interventions

Your memory difficulties may be nothing serious – they may be part of a condition that can easily be treated, like anaemia, an infection or depression.

If you or your loved one show signs of memory loss, contact your GP, who can check things properly and provide you with a diagnosis and interventions to help.

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Lowering Blood Sugar: how can i lower my blood sugar ...

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Why Are Oral Antidiabetic Drugs Not Given To Patients With Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus Quizlet

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Whats Behind The Memory Decline In Diabetes

Previous studies have shown that people with type 2 diabetes have an increased risk for Alzheimers disease. Alzheimers is a kind of dementia that causes issues with memory, thinking and behavior. Its progressive and irreversible, and it eventually destroys a persons ability to carry out even the simplest of tasks.

While memory loss is a key feature of Alzheimers, there are differences between the memory loss that occurs with aging and memory loss due to Alzheimers. However, both are more likely to occur in people with type 2 diabetes. Researchers think that damage to blood vessels, which can occur in diabetes, is what can lead to cognitive problems and vascular dementia. Its also possible that high blood sugar levels cause damage in the hippocampus, a part of the brain thats involved in memory. Actually, high blood sugars appear to be detrimental to brain health, in general. But even people whose diabetes is in good control are more likely to experience memory problems and impairments in cognitive function.

Its also worth noting that having too many very low blood sugars may potentially also affect your memory and cognition. The goal is to stay on an even keel.

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General Cognitive Function Tests

General intellectual ability was estimated at baseline using the National Adult Reading Test , a test of pronunciation of vocabulary . The mean number of errors recorded was significantly less in the group without diabetes compared with the group with diabetes . As a total group, participants had above average intelligence according to the NART conversion tables in the manual. IQ scores are given in and were calculated using the following formula: predicted full-scale IQ = 128 .

Tests of language processing and working memory were administered along with Trail Making B and Digit Symbol Test , which are known to be consistently affected by hypoglycemia. The order of tests was identical during each study condition. Every participant practiced all tests before each experiment. For the DST, all participants converted the same short sequence of numbers to symbols, with every digit from 1 to 9 being represented in the test sequence. On the TMB, participants all completed the same practice trail, with each test trail differing from the previous one in order to ensure that the practice attempt would not invalidate subsequent tests.

Ways To Lower Your Risk Fordiabetes And Protect Your Memory

Can diabetes cause you memory loss?

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:
  • vitamin D
  • 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.

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    High Blood Sugar Linked To Memory Loss

    Taking Steps to Lower Blood Sugar May Protect Against Age-Related Memory Loss

    Dec. 30, 2008 — Maintaining normal blood sugar levels as we age may protect against more than diabetes. It may also help prevent age-related memory loss, a new study shows.

    Using high-resolution brain imaging, researchers showed that rising blood sugar levels selectively target a key area of the brain linked to memory decline.

    The finding suggests that interventions to improve blood sugar, such as getting regular exercise and eating a healthy diet, may help both the body and the brain as it ages.

    “We have known that exercise improves blood sugar and that it helps prevent age-related memory loss,” says lead researcher Scott Small, MD, of Columbia University Medical Center. “In this study, we were able to show the specific area of the brain that is impacted by rising blood sugar.”

    Why Is Alzheimers Called Type 3 Diabetes

    Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes results in high blood sugar levels. Studies have shown that, compared to the general population, aging people with diabetes have:

    • Poorer memory
    • Higher levels of cognitive decline
    • Double levels of Alzheimer’s

    Alzheimers disease has been referred to as type 3 diabetes. There is a faster rate of cognitive decline in people with chronic high blood sugar levels. Up to 80% of people with Alzheimers disease have insulin resistance.

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    The Usc Healthier Vessels Healthier Brain Study: Research To Understand How Early Diabetes Affects Capillaries Brain Cells And Memory Function

    Dr. Helena Chui and the research team at the USC ADRCare conducting a study to determine how early diabetes affects capillaries, brain cells and cognitive abilities. USC is the home to the Stevens Institute of Neuroimaging and Informatics. We perform state of the art, high resolution MRI images of the brain and blood vessels. We have developed a new method of assessing capillary integrity using contrast MRI. We can measure hundreds of proteins, including insulin, insulin growth factor, beta-amyloid, tau proteins, omega-3-fatty acids from samples of cerebrospinal fluid. If you are interested in more information, please click here: or call the Research Center for more information and to set up a confidential screening phone interview: Lina DOrazio, Ph.D. 442-7680 or Maria Hernandez 442-6845.

    Why We Should Consider Integrative Treatments In The Fight Against Diabetes And Alzheimers Disease

    Mediterranean Diet May Reduce Alzheimer

    Functional medicine therapies can help to both prevent diabetes and reduce complications associated with type 2 diabetes and Alzheimers disease. These therapies include exercise, dietary changes like increasing healthy fats and decreasing sugar, consuming more vegetables in the diet, weight loss, taking specific supplements for cognitive decline, hormonal balancing treatments to address insulin resistance issuesand more.

    Many of these treatment approaches work in a similar way to maintain cognitive function and reduce risk factors associated with Alzheimers disease.

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    Causes Of Spacing Out

    Generally, “spacing out” means that you are not in the moment, or that your mind is somewhere else. Daydreaming is the most common kind of spacing out. It is generally nothing to worry about. But there are more serious kinds of spacing out that can be caused by a medical condition.

    Here’s a list of the potential medical causes behind spacing out.

    Anxiety Stress And Depression

    Anxiety, stress and depression are frequently linked with difficulties with memory in the short-term, with memory improving again once a period of stress, anxiety or depression is over.

    If you have depression or are going through long periods of anxiety or stress, speak to your doctor. There are number of effective treatments available aside from medication, which include talking therapies and mindfulness

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    Anxiety Over Low Blood Sugar

    A low blood sugar episode, which can include anything from confusion and shakiness to nausea, loss of consciousness, and seizures, can be very scary. It therefore makes sense that some people with diabetes also experience anxiety related to possibly having a low blood sugar episodeand not just as a physiological reaction to low blood sugar levels.

    This anxiety is so common that the term “fear of hypoglycemia” is commonly used among healthcare providers and researchers. Research has found that a history of experiencing mild hypoglycemia increases FoH in people who have diabetes.

    Diabetes And The Brain

    FDA Warns Statins Increase Blood Sugar and Cause Memory Problems

    Brain imaging studies using a technology called SPECT shows that diabetes has been linked to decreased blood flow to the brain and a smaller hippocampus, a brain region that is involved in the formation of memories.

    Even mildly elevated blood sugar levels and prediabetes are significant problems and are associated with brain atrophy, memory problems, and dementia. In people who didnt have diabetes, the risk of dementia was 18% higher for those with an average blood glucose level of 115 milligrams per deciliter compared to those with average glucose levels of 100 mg/dL. And every incrementally higher glucose level was associated with a higher risk of dementia.

    High normal blood sugar levels have also been linked with shrinkage in the hippocampus, leading to memory problems. The dementia risk was even worse for people who had diabetes because their blood sugar levels were generally higher. It was 40% higher for people with an average glucose level of 190 mg/dL compared to those with an average glucose level of 160 mg/dL.

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    Blood Vessel Damage In Diabetes Leads To Brain Fog Memory Loss

    Blood sugar highs and lows create problems with blood circulation. Restricted circulation to the brain starves it of nutrients and oxygen. The brain cant function at its peak when it lacks nourishment therefore, symptoms of brain fog begin.

    Circulation problems arent the only effect diabetes has on blood vessels. Hyperglycemia damages vessel walls over time, reducing their flexibility and responsiveness to the blood flow within them. In the brain, blood vessels need to flex to accommodate changing circulation. The brain adjusts the amount of blood it uses to support the functioning of various areas and structures. When blood vessels are rigid, they dont move fluidly to supply nutrients and oxygen where theyre most needed. As a result, memory loss, reasoning, processing speed, and more are compromised .

    Diabetes and brain fog make life difficult. Is there a fix?

    Can Diabetes Cause Memory Problems

    Many people are aware of some of the devastating consequences of uncontrolled or untreated diabetes, including an increased risk for heart disease, blindness, and kidney failure. But did you know that it also puts you at a higher risk for memory problems, Alzheimers disease, and other types of dementia? Scientific evidence links abnormal insulin levels to cognitive decline and Alzheimers disease. Thats bad news for the 50% of the U.S. population who have diabetes or prediabetes.

    Diabetes is a disorder that occurs when the bodys blood sugar levels are chronically too high. The condition develops when the body either does not produce enough insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar levels or does not use insulin efficiently. There are two types of diabetes:

    • Type1: This is characterized by the insufficient production of insulin.
    • Type2: This occurs when the body doesnt use insulin efficiently.

    Both types of diabetes damage blood vessels, which then cause harmto the bodys organs and brain.

    Prediabetes, a precursor to type 2 diabetes, is defined ashaving blood sugar levels that are higher than normal but not high enough to bediagnosed as diabetes.

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    Protect Your Brain Protect Your Future

    A high functioning brain is one of the keys to a high quality of life. Protecting your brain from damage is important. There any many factors that contribute to dementia. Some of the factors are in your control.

    Insulin resistance is thought to cause a cascade of problems in your brain. Over half of the U.S. population is likely to be insulin resistant. The good news is that insulin resistance is both preventable and treatable. You can learn more about how you can protect your brain from the harmful effects of sugar. One way to protect your brain from too much sugar is to try this next recipe as a low-sugar way to satisfy your sweet tooth!

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