January 8


Can Blood Glucose Levels Affect the Function of The Brain?

By Gabriela

January 8, 2021

The brain is an organ that is sensitive to the amount of glucose it gets as fuel.

It doesn’t matter whether people have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, both low blood sugar and high blood sugar might impact the brain. Understanding the role of sugar in the brain is vital for people with this chronic condition.

The Web MD consumes a big amount of sugar, therefore maintaining a constant amount in the blood is vital in order to ensure the brain functions correctly.

The Energy of the Brain

The brain is the most energy-demanding and complex organ in the body. It needs twice as much energy in comparison to other organs.

It’s like that since the brain is abundant in nerve cells and neurons. These cells actually expend energy in order to make specialized proteins and enzymes function.

The initial function of neurons is to produce electrical signals to communicate with the other neurons found in the brain. Transmitting and generating these signals actually uses around 10 % of the total energy supply of the body.

Brain Functions

The main role of sugar in the body is to act as fuel for energy. In fact, the brain entirely depends on sugar in order to function normally. The brain functions like memory, thinking, and learning is tied to the sugar levels and how efficiently the brain uses sugar.

Glucose is so important that memory functions might be improved in older adults who have poor memories. The memory functions might improve only 60 minutes after having a meal rich in carbs.

Study on This Topic

Web MD, blood sugar levels even at a normal range might have a big influence on brain atrophy when it comes to aging.

Dr. Walsh from CRAHW at ANU, says that even perfectly healthy people might sometimes have high blood sugar levels which can have a negative impact on their health.

Moreover, those with diabetes might have lower blood sugar levels than expected because of the successful management of exercise, diet, and drugs.

According to Dr. Walsh, all people should adopt healthy lifestyle habits, like a healthy and balanced diet and regular exercise. Furthermore, it’s important to avoid sugar and highly processed foods.

The Link Between the Brain and Blood Sugar

The term blood glucose actually refers to the amount of sugar that is found in the blood. The normal level of blood glucose is below 120 mg per deciliter, from 1 or maybe 2 hours after having a meal.

When the blood glucose levels are too high or too low, this is known by the name hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia. Hyperglycemia occurs when the blood glucose is too high, but the glucose doesn’t get to the brain.

Therefore, the brain might function less efficiently. On the other hand, hypoglycemia might cause a loss of energy when it comes to the proper functioning of the brain.

In fact, low glucose levels are connected to poor cognitive function and attention. Now we are aware of the importance of our blood glucose levels and how they influence our brain.


  • Gabriela

    Co-Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Diabetes Health Page, Fitness trainer and instructor has dedicated her career to educating and informing people for over 10 years. As one of the most passionate diabetes advocates, Gabi has worked tirelessly to ensure that those people receive the education and support they need to properly manage their diabetes and achieve their health, fitness and weight loss goals.

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