Diabetes and memory loss solution

September 25, 2008

Another story that interested me this week, also came from Canada and the Baycrest Center. This time they were reporting on the link between diabetes, high-fat foods and memory loss.

Apparently, adults with type 2 diabetes who eat unhealthy, high-fat, meals can suffer from some reduction in their ability to remember things immediately after eating such a meal. Possibly because they have fallen asleep while digesting such a heavy meal, but there is hope as the temporary memory loss can be offset by taking antioxidant vitamins C and E with the meal.

It is already known that diabetes is linked to the ability to retain information, but now it seems that adults with type 2 diabetes are especially vulnerable to acute memory loss after eating unhealthy foods. The new findings appeared in a recent issue of Nutrition Research, a professional peer-reviewed journal, and suggests that taking high doses of antioxidant vitamins C and E with the meal may help minimize those memory slumps.

Type 2 diabetes is associated with chronic oxidative stress, a major contributor to cognitive decline and Alzheimer disease. If you have an unhealthy diet, then that raises your level of free radicals and those unstable molecules can damage tissue, including brain tissue. These destructive molecule reactions typically occur over a one-to-three hour period after you have eaten but don’t think that popping a supplement pill will do the trick on its own. It’s a place to start, and the study used vitamin C of 100mg and vitamin E of 800 mg taken with the meal, but do check with your doctor as there are contraindications for taking high doses.

Specifically, tell your doctor if you are taking warfarin as you may not be able to take vitamin E without special monitoring during treatment, and also consult your doctor if you are pregnant or breast-feeding a baby.

Ideally you will change your diet to one that is high in antioxidants to chase down those free radicals – look back at the article on the Mediterranean Diet as it is generally accepted to be one of the most health-giving there is.


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