Type 2 diabetes impairs brain function: Study

cognitive decline and diabetesHarvard researchers have linked inflammation and reduction in blood flow to the brain in those with Type 2 diabetes with reduced cognitive function.

Type 2 diabetes remains prevalent in the American population. It can lead to other health concerns such as diabetic retinopathy and cardiovascular disease. This study research suggests Type 2 diabetes, in particular, can also reduce brain function.


The study observed 40 people with Type 2 diabetes. Of those, 19 had diabetes while 21 did not. Those with diabetes had been receiving treatment for at least five years.

Tests to measure cognitive ability were conducted on the patients, and repeated after two years.

The ability to regulate blood flow in the brain was found to be reduced among those with Type 2 diabetes. Participants who experienced inflammation also saw a reduction in cognitive ability. This did not improve if the person had their blood pressure and diabetes under control.

The findings were published in Neurology.


Author Bio

Emily Lunardo studied medical sociology at York University with a strong focus on the social determinants of health and mental illness. She is a registered Zumba instructor, as well as a Canfit Pro trainer, who teaches fitness classes on a weekly basis. Emily practices healthy habits in her own life as well as helps others with their own personal health goals. Emily joined Bel Marra Health as a health writer in 2013.