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The Link Between Alzheimer’s Prevention and Type II Diabetes

Posted by on Sunday, February 5th, 2017

 diabetes and lzheimer's prevention

Research studies indicate there may be  a close relationship between several disease entities and Alzheimer’s disease, in fact, Alzheimer’s prevention measures should encompass prevention strategies of other disorders including, cancer, heart disease, obesity, and particularly Type 2 diabetes (referred to as T2B in the research arena).  The incidence of T2B has risen so dramatically in recent years that it’s become known as a new global epidemic. Learning about the risks for diabetes is part of an effective Alzheimer’s prevention/education strategy. But what does diabetes have to do with Alzheimer’s prevention?

  The link between Alzheimer’s Disease and Type II Diabetes  

A recent online post from Mayo reports, “while not all research confirms the connection, many studies suggest people with diabetes, especially type 2 diabetes, are at higher risk of eventually developing Alzheimer’s dementia or other dementias.”

Changes that result in a disruption in normal blood flow to the brain occur in diabetes.  This increases the risk for vascular dementia.  Many folks with diabetes develop symptoms that are characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia.

Diabetes is also associated with a higher risk of development of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), which commonly precedes the onset of Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia.

Recent studies aim to discover exactly what the connection is between type II diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.  Mayo says, this connection may have to do with the way T2B adversely affects the brain’s use of glucose (sugar) and its response to insulin. 

Research Study on Diet and Type II Diabetes

PLOS Medicine Publication

Harvard Health published an article revealing a recent study of the daily diet patterns from 200,000 people in the United States, and how a healthy diet relates to the incidence of Type II diabetes.  The study was NOT based on a rigid daily diet regime, but rather, it considered the types of food eaten daily (across a continuum from mostly animal based to mostly plant based diets and every array of food choices in between) by ordinary people.

The study, published in PLOS Medicine, discovered some interesting facts to say the least.

Study participants who:

  • Chose mostly plant based diets developed type II diabetes less often than other participants-20% less often to be exact
  • Ingested diets comprised of plant based foods (including fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains) realized a 34% reduction in the development of type II diabetes.
  • Ate less healthy foods such as sugar sweetened drinks and refined grains (white flour) had a 16% higher incidence of type II diabetes, compared to those who ate healthier.  

Harvard Health concluded, “This new study is among the strongest to date supporting the notion that a healthy diet can lower your risk of a chronic disease such as diabetes.”

Healthy Foods for Type II Diabetes and Alzheimer’s Prevention

Dietary guidelines from MyPlate, (published by the USDA) encourages healthy eating to prevent heart disease (what’s good for the heart is good for the brain), diabetes and cancer, to include:

  • Whole fruits and vegetables comprising 50% of each meal
  • Protein representing 25% of the meal
  • Whole grains included as the final 25% of each meal
  • Low fat dairy should be chosen over higher fat content options
  • Moderate total calorie intake is suggested (depending on age, gender, size and physical activity)
  • Saturated fat, sodium and processed sugar (and white flour products) intake should be reduced 

In conclusion, these studies do not prove without the shadow of a doubt that healthy diet can directly impact the incidence of type II diabetes in each incidence, but they do show evidence that eating health has a strong relationship to long term health and lends itself to Alzheimer’s prevention. 

Click Here to learn more about Alzheimer’s prevention in the book, Alzheimer’s Prevention & Treatment Diet, written by Harvard trained neurologist, Dr. Richard Isaacson.




For more easy to follow nutrition advice check out The Alzheimer’s Diet: A Step-by-Step Nutritional Approach to Memory Loss Prevention and Treatment, or visit to learn more about Neurologist, Dr. Richard Isaacson's 9 week diet plan and his cutting edge approach in the fight against AD in Alzheimer's Treatment | Alzheimer's Prevention: A Patient and Family Guide 2012 Edition. Also, sign up for the newsletter to get the latest updates in AD treatment and prevention news.

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