December 26


The Link Between High Blood Glucose and Memory Decline

By Gabriela

December 26, 2020

At least a few times you have caught yourself being in a situation where you cannot remember something seemingly significant. It is entirely OK to forget things from time to time. This happens to everyone.

It is okay if you cannot remember the name of someone you have just met or if you forgot where you left the keys. A standard part of aging is a certain degree of memory issues and a modest decline in thinking skills.

Yes, there is a difference, between the memory loss linked with Alzheimer’s disease and related conditions and normal changes in memories. As a matter of fact, specific memory issues occur due to conditions that are treatable.

In case you believe that you have memory issues, you should consult your doctor to get appropriate care and diagnosis.

Aging and Memory Loss

You should know that memory loss related to age doesn’t actually prevent you from living a productive and full life. For instance, occasionally you might forget a person’s name, but you will surely recall it later on.

Also, you might forget where you put your glasses, and you will need to make lists in order to remember tasks and appointments. These changes are manageable, and they don’t disrupt the ability to keep a social life, live independently, and work.

But, are the blood glucose levels related to memory decline?

Study About the Link between High Blood Glucose Levels and Cognitive Decline

According to one study, raising blood glucose levels are linked to cognitive decline. The researchers evaluated cognitive function in 5,189 individuals with an average age of 66.

What the researchers did is that they tested their blood glucose with the help of the test HbA1c. This is a test that measures blood sugar levels over a period of months and weeks.

In contrast, the finger-prick blood test provides a reading but only at that specific moment.

More About the Study

The researchers followed this group of participants for one decade, periodically testing their cognitive ability and tracking their blood sugar levels. The journal Diabetologia published this study.

At the beginning of the study, there was no sign of a connection between cognition and blood glucose levels.

But over time, as the HbA1c levels raised, even in individuals without diabetes they score on the test of executive function and memory declined.

Furthermore, this study controlled for other variables such as gender, age, BMI, cardiovascular disease, education, cholesterol, hypertension, marital status, alcohol consumption, smoking, and depression.

This is a study that doesn’t prove effect and cause. According to a lead author, a researcher at the Health Science Center of Peking University, Wuxiang Xie the underlying mechanism is unknown.

But according to him, the microvascular complications related to diabetes might be the cause of the subsequent cognitive decline.

How to Treat and Prevent Memory Decline

  • Thinking and memory training might help you improve the function;
  • Physical exercise on a regular basis might slow and prevent cognitive decline, and it is excellent for your overall health;
  • A diet rich in vegetables and fruits and low in fat can help protect your cognitive health;
  • Social engagement might help you slow mental decline and preserve mental function;
  • Consume omega-3 fatty acids since they can benefit your cognitive health;
  • Prevent cognitive decline with intellectual stimulation. Intellectual activities such as reading books, computer use, reading books, and playing games might be beneficial.



  • 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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