Sunday July 21, 2019

Treating Diabetes May Also Prevent People From Developing Alzheimer’s Disease: Study

In addition, nearly 530 participants had normal blood sugar levels while 250 had prediabetes

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In Alzheimer's disease, patients start losing memory. Pixabay

Treating Type-2 diabetes may prevent people from developing Alzheimer’s disease, says a new study.

Patients with untreated diabetes develop signs of Alzheimer’s disease 1.6 times faster than people who did not have diabetes, according to the study published in the journal Diabetes Care.

Scientists consider Alzheimer’s as the result of a cascade of multiple problems including factors ranging from pollution exposure and genetics to heart and metabolic diseases.

“It is possible that the medicines for treating diabetes might make a difference in the progression of brain degeneration,” said Daniel A. Nation, Associate Professor at University of Southern California.

“But it’s unclear how exactly those medications might slow or prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, so that is something we need to investigate,” he added.

Cognitive Impairment
Alzheimer’s disease patient Isidora Tomaz, 82, sits in an armchair in her house in Lisbon, Portugal. It’s predicted that by 2050, 135 million Americans are going to suffer from mild cognitive impairment, a precursor of Alzheimer’s. VOA

For the study, the researchers analysed data on nearly 1,300 people aged 55 and older.

Data included biomarkers for diabetes and vascular disease, brain scans and a range of health indicators, including performance on memory tests.

Among 900 of those patients, more than 50 had Type-2 diabetes who did not receive any treatment, whereas nearly 70 were undergoing treatment.

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In addition, nearly 530 participants had normal blood sugar levels while 250 had prediabetes.

“Our findings emphasise the importance of catching diabetes or other metabolic diseases in adults as early as possible,” Nation said.

“Among people with diabetes, the difference in their rate of developing the signs of dementia and Alzheimer’s is clearly tied somehow to whether or not they are on medication for it,” he noted. (IANS)

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People Who Take Cholesterol-Lowering Statins are at Higher Risk of Developing Type 2 Diabetes

More than a quarter of middle-aged adults use a cholesterol-lowering drug, according to estimates

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Research, Cholesterol, Diabetes
Statins are a class of drugs that can lower cholesterol and blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. Pixabay

People who take cholesterol-lowering statins may be at twice the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, says a new study.

Statins are a class of drugs that can lower cholesterol and blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. More than a quarter of middle-aged adults use a cholesterol-lowering drug, according to estimates.

The study, published in the Diabetes Metabolism Research and Reviews journal, found that statin users had more than double the risk of diagnosis compared to those who didn’t take the drugs. Those who took the cholesterol-lowering drugs for more than two years had more than three times the risk of diabetes.

“The fact that increased duration of statin use was associated with an increased risk of diabetes – something we call a dose-dependent relationship – makes us think that this is likely a causal relationship,” said the study’s lead author Victoria Zigmont, a graduate student at the Ohio State University.

Research, Cholesterol, Diabetes
People who take cholesterol-lowering statins may be at twice the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Pixabay

“Statins are very effective in preventing heart attacks and strokes. I would never recommend that people stop taking the statin they’ve been prescribed based on this study, but it should open up further discussions about diabetes prevention,” Zigmont added.

For the study, the researchers included over 4,000 men and women who did not have diabetes, were candidates for statins based on heart disease risk and had not yet taken the drugs at the start of the study. About 16 per cent of the group – 755 patients – were eventually prescribed statins during the study period.

Researchers also found that statin users were 6.5 percent more likely to have a troublingly high HbA1c value – a routine blood test for diabetes that estimates average blood sugar over several months.

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“Although statins have clear benefits in appropriate patients, scientists and clinicians should further explore the impact of statins on human metabolism, in particular the interaction between lipid and carbohydrate metabolism,” said co-author Steven Clinton, a Professor at the varsity. (IANS)