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Study Says Diabetes Can Slow The Brain


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1/22/2009
Brent Adams
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According to a report released by researchers in Canada on December 31, the disabling condition of diabetes can slow the brain, resulting in trouble with two types of mental processing in adults of all ages.

Researchers found that healthy adults performed significantly better than those suffering from diabetes on two tests of mental functioning: executive functioning and speed of response.

According to one of the researchers, Roger Dixon, speed and executive functioning are believed to be among the major components of cognitive health.

Executive functioning includes the ability to focus, work with new information to solve problems, and give thoughtful responses to questions.

According to the researchers, the study examined 41 adults between the ages of 53 and 90 who suffered from type-2 diabetes and 424 adults in good health.

According to Dixon, there were few differences between adults under and over the age of 70, suggesting that the changes take place early. He said that there may be ways to compensate for those declines, though it would have to be early and requires proper management.

Diabetes is known to elevate the risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s. The levels of blood sugar caused by diabetes can result in damage to both blood vessels and nerves and cause damage in many organs.

According to a study published in July, diabetics who take insulin in addition to a diabetes pill show a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease than those taking only insulin.

At least 194 million people across the globe suffer from the disabling condition of diabetes and by 2025, the World Health Organization expects that the number will reach more than 300 million.

The majority of diabetes sufferers have type 2 diabetes, also known as adult-onset diabetes. In type 2 diabetes, the body either produces less insulin or has more difficulty using it.



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