Diabetes Can Age Your Brain 5 Years Faster: How To Preserve Your Memory

African American woman thoughtful seriousDiabetes, prediabetes and poor glucose control in people with diabetes are risk factors for cognitive decline. Poor glucose control can cause damage to organs in the body including the brain. Compared with older adults without diabetes, older people with type 2 diabetes are almost twice as likely to develop cognitive decline.

Moreover, research suggests that people diagnosed with diabetes in midlife are more likely to experience significant memory and cognitive problems during the next 20 years than those with healthy blood glucose levels.

A 2014 study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that diabetes appears to age the mind roughly five years faster beyond the normal effects of aging. For example, on average, a 60-year-old with diabetes experiences cognitive decline equal to that of a healthy 65-year-old aging normally.

What Is Cognitive Decline?
Cognitive impairment or decline is when a person has trouble remembering, learning new things, concentrating, or making decisions that affect their everyday life. Cognitive impairment ranges from mild (MCI) to the more serious decline of dementia.