Nearly 62 million Indians have diabetes, a disease that makes the body less able to convert sugar to energy. Most people with uncontrolled type 2 diabetes have too much sugar left in the blood. Over time, this can damage organs, including the brain.
Alzheimer’s disease, on the other hand, is a progressive and fatal brain disorder that gradually destroys a person’s memory and ability to learn, reason, make judgments, communicate and carry out daily activities. As Alzheimer’s progresses, individuals may have changes in personality and behavior, such as anxiety, suspiciousness or agitation, as well as delusions.
What is Type 3 Diabetes?
Type 3 diabetes is a term used when Alzheimer’s disease is triggered by insulin resistance in the brain. This condition is most often used to describe people who have type 2 diabetes and are also diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Type 3 diabetes occurs when neurons in the brain become unable to respond to insulin, which is essential for basic tasks, including memory and learning. Some researchers believe insulin deficiency is central to the cognitive decline of Alzheimer’s disease.
Statistics of Type 3 Diabetes and Alzheimer’s
People who have type 2 diabetes may be up to 60 percent more likely to develop Alzheimer’s or dementia. One study of over 100,000 subjects with dementia pointed out that women with type 2 diabetes had a higher probability of developing vascular dementia than men.
What is the Alzheimer’s–Diabetes link?
Doctors don’t know yet what causes Alzheimer’s disease or exactly how Alzheimer’s and diabetes are connected. But they do know that high blood sugar or insulin can harm the brain in several ways:
- Diabetes raises the risk of heart disease and stroke, which hurt the heart and blood vessels. Damaged blood vessels in the brain may contribute to Alzheimer’s disease.
- The brain depends on many different chemicals, which may be unbalanced by too much insulin. Some of these changes may help trigger Alzheimer’s disease.
- High blood sugar causes inflammation. This may damage brain cells and help Alzheimer’s to develop.
- a family history of diabetes
- high blood pressure
- being overweight or obese
- certain chronic health conditions, such as depression and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
Symptoms of Type-3 Diabetes
The symptoms of type 3 diabetes are the same as symptoms of dementia or early Alzheimer’s. These symptoms include:
- memory loss that affects daily living and social interactions
- difficulty completing familiar tasks
- misplacing things often
- decreased ability to make judgments based on information
- sudden changes in personality
Diagnosis of Type-3 Diabetes
There’s no specific test for Alzheimer’s or type 3 diabetes. Your doctor will ask several questions about your family history and your symptoms along with relevant tests for High Blood Sugar. Brain imaging, like MRIs and CT scans, can give your doctor a picture of how your brain is working. Cerebrospinal fluid tests can also look for indicators of Alzheimer’s.
Treatment for Type-3 Diabetes
There are specific treatment options for people who have type 2 diabetes as well as Alzheimer’s.
Lifestyle changes, such as diet and exercise, maybe a big part of your treatment. If you have both type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer’s, treatment for your type 2 diabetes is important to stop the progression of Alzheimer’s.
Metformin is an anti-diabetic drug that may also help treat symptoms of dementia. Other symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia, like mood swings and depression, may be treated with psychotropic drugs. Antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications are part of treatment in some cases.
The outlook for Type-3 Diabetes
If you can treat your diabetes with diet, exercise, and medication, you may be able to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s or dementia. Your outlook will also vary according to how soon your symptoms were discovered, and what your doctor thinks about your specific case. The sooner treatment begins, the better your outlook will be.
Preventing Type-3 Diabetes and Alzheimer’s
If you already have type 2 diabetes, there are ways that you can lower your risk for developing type 3. Here are some of the proven methods for controlling type 2 diabetes and minimizing organ damage:
- Exercise four times per week for 30 minutes per day.
- Eat healthy foods rich in protein and high in fiber. Read more about diet tips for diabetes management.
- Carefully monitor your blood sugar according to your health team’s recommendations.
- Take any prescribed medications on schedule and with regularity.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
Read More: Different Types of Diabetes
Disclaimer: The above information has been prepared by a qualified medical professional and may not represent the practices followed universally. The suggestions listed in this article constitute relatively common advice given to patients, and since every patient is different, you are advised to consult your physician, if in doubt, before acting upon this information. Lupin Limited has only facilitated the distribution of this information to you in the interest of patient education and welfare.