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Type 2 Diabetes – Lower Blood Sugar and Blood Pressure Readings Lead To Healthy Thinking

According to several scientists at the Maastricht University Medical Center at the Maastricht University in the Netherlands, controlling Type 2 diabetes and blood pressure can help ward off thinking problems that contribute to complicating the disease. Their study reported on in the journal of the American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Care, in August of 2017, included two thousand five hundred and thirty-one participants, six hundred and sixty-six of which had Type 2 diabetes. The participants with Type 2 diabetes scored a lower level in their mental tests including…

  • executive function,
  • attention, and
  • processing speed,

than did the nondiabetic participants.

Executive function is…

  • the ability to plan,
  • carry out projects,
  • observe, and
  • try some other plan if necessary.

Among the participants with Type 2 diabetes…

  • high blood sugar levels were linked strongly with poorer mental abilities, and
  • high blood pressure readings (hypertension) had a slightly lower link with poor test results.

The investigators concluded blood sugar and hypertension were related to poor mental function in this test, but they pointed out the study is cross-sectional. Cross-sectional studies look at all things at the same time. In the future, a study looking at blood sugar, blood pressure, and mental abilities changing over time could make the results more compelling.

In May of 2015, the North American Journal of Medical Science published the results of a similar study performed at Cooper University in New Jersey, United States. Researchers found…

  • 19.5 percent of Type 2 diabetic participants 60 years of age or younger, had impaired mental functions.
  • the HbA1c reading was also weakly linked with thinking functions.
  • there was also a slight connection with the number of years participants had diabetes and lowered mental scores.

On the bright side, there was a small link between education and better mental scores.

Blood sugar levels affect the whole body by affecting the blood vessels and keeping them from delivering sufficient oxygen and nutrients. High blood pressure makes the heart struggle to provide enough blood to the entire body, including the brain. Keeping blood sugar levels and blood pressure under control is good for the whole body.

Type 2 diabetes and blood pressure are monitored by many of the same things. Eating a healthy diet…

  • obtaining and maintaining a healthy weight, and
  • getting enough physical activity,

contribute to healthy blood pressure readings and blood sugar levels. When necessary take medications religiously for healthy mental function and overall good health.

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