By William Smith
Individuals with diabetes have an increased risk of developing dementia than those without diabetes, according to a new Japanese study.
As the incidence of diabetes is growing across the world this discovery is worrying.
Yutaka Kiyohara, M.M., Ph.D., of Kyushu University in Fukuoka, Japan, said ‘Our findings emphasise the need to consider diabetes as a potential risk factor for dementia. 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.’
The study is published in the medical journal Neurology.
People with diabetes were more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia researchers discovered.
Researchers monitored 1,017 Japanese individuals aged 60 years and over for an average of eleven years. They then tested for dementia. 232 people developed dementia during the study period.
The researchers found that people with diabetes had double the risk to develop dementia than people with normal blood sugar levels.
From a group of 150 people with diabetes, 41 developed dementia. This compared to 115 who developed dementia from a group of 559 people without diabetes. The results remained constant after taking into account factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking.
For people who did not have diabetes but had impaired glucose tolerance or were ‘pre-diabetes’ the risk of dementia was also higher.
Researchers also round that the risk of developing dementia was significantly increased when blood sugar was still high two hours after eating a meal.
Source: American Academy of Neurology