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Diabetes and the progression to Alzheimer’s

peson checking blood sugar
January 4, 2018

We used to think there were two types of diabetes – the type young children contract (Type 1 – Autoimmune) and the type you get that is brought on by a combination of unhealthy lifestyle choices, called (Type 2), or adult-onset diabetes.
But there is that such a thing as Type 3 Diabetes, also called by another name, Alzheimer’s disease.

If you OR someone you know would interested in learning more about Diabetes or Pre-Diabetes OR Dr. Autoimmune’s Functional Medicine approach: I encourage you to come to our next Functional Medicine Seminar on January 11th at 6:00 PM. There is no cost nor obligation AND attendees will be invited to enjoy exclusive, new patient pricing!

What you learn will open your eyes and mind to a bright and healthy future. Limited seating, call to reserve your seat today 303.882.8447 OR register online through the form below!

Type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease, it’s not a coincidence that both are prevalent among the aging population.
The progression from type 2 diabetes to Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia marked by memory deficits and a dramatic decline in cognitive function is where type 3 diabetes comes into play.

People with diabetes have a 60 percent increased risk of developing any type of dementia or Alzheimer’s. Gary Small, M.D., a professor of psychiatry at the UCLA Semel Institute said, “these risk factors tend to add up: If you have diabetes, that doubles the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. If you have a first-degree relative—a parent or sibling, for example—with Alzheimer’s, that doubles your risk.” And if you have poorly controlled blood pressure, abdominal obesity, or sleep apnea, your risk of developing dementia is increased even more. Instead of just having insulin resistance in the muscle, liver, and fat cells, we can develop insulin resistance in the brain.

How does type 2 diabetes lead to type 3 diabetes and Alzheimer’s?

For starters, high blood sugar leads to inflammation throughout your body and brain. This is a problem because chronic inflammation has been linked with the formation of amyloid plaques and tau tangles, abnormalities in the brain that are hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease. Science now understands that it is the lack of insulin — or insulin resistance that not only impairs cognition but is implicated in the formation of those amyloid plaques.

Type 3 diabetes is a form of Neuro-Diabetes. Insulin resistance can impair blood flow to the brain causing damage to the blood vessels, which means brain cells aren’t getting sufficient oxygen and nutrients for them to function properly. This, in turn, causes the neurons to die off a faster rate. Type 2 diabetes can cause toxic proteins to accumulate in the brain and it may impair the brain’s ability to clear out waste products compromising important brain functions such as the formation and maintenance of new connections between brain cells.

Just as insulin resistance plays out in the rest of the body when there’s impaired insulin signaling in the brain, brain cells can’t use glucose properly, and brain function suffers as a result. In case that isn’t worrisome enough, when circulation to the brain is compromised, you’re also more prone to developing strokes.

What you can do

Nutrition – anti-inflammatory diet can help add years to your life and life to your years. An anti-inflammatory diet (we recommend Paleo-Mediterranean) designed specifically for you including healthy food combinations that fight inflammation and address all your food allergies and triggers is key is combating diabetes.

Manage your weight and exercise – Besides being a risk factor for the development of type 2 and type 3 diabetes, abdominal obesity increases your risk of heart disease and impairs brain health, increasing the risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Consider this added incentive to get your weight into a healthy range.

Keep your mind sharp – What you do to help your brain also helps your body. Neurofeedback can help rehabilitate your neurological functioning.

Neurofeedback can retrain and repair areas of the brain that have been damaged by diabetes. Specific areas of the brain can be targeted to have the most impact. Thanks to the brain’s neuroplasticity, which is its ability to repair itself, with proper support from neurofeedback, the brain can regain strength and function in areas like working memory and executive functioning (a set of mental processes that involve planning, organizing, controlling attention, and flexible thinking).

It is also important to get plenty of good quality sleep and to manage stress, anxiety, and depression. Neurofeedback can help you overcome the symptoms that are holding you back from taking charge of your diabetes and your health!

Unfortunately, we see the daily struggle in our client’s mood, energy and mental clarity when they have elevated blood sugar levels and type 2 diabetes. Fortunately, we can get to the root cause of these challenges with functional medicine and start to link systems together that are creating these complicated challenges! If you can address the underlying hormonal, gut, environmental and lifestyle factors driving the inflammation we may be able to reduce blood sugar levels, optimize blood pressure, reduce cardiovascular risk markers, improve weight management and even begin to lift the fog that robs the joy from your life!

Dr. Autoimmune is Boulder’s and Denver’s premier functional medicine clinic focusing on metabolic conditions like type 2 and 3 diabetes. With a customized plan you can have the organization necessary to take back your life! If you have been suffering from this problem don’t wait! There will always be an excuse like “I’ll start in January when everyone else will”, so if you know why you want to feel better then we will determine your unique how!

Contact the Dr. Autoimmune for a free 20-minute consultation or join us for a seminar on Pre-Diabetes and Diabetes January 11th, 2018! – 303-882-8447

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