Sweet Tooth Linked to Alzheimer’s, Dementia

A growing body of scientific evidence is illuminating ways in which we might all be able to prevent Alzheimer’s — even if we’re predisposed toward dementia.

Until now, most of those efforts have focused on physical activity and mental strengthening. Now there’s a whole new frontier in the battle against Alzheimer’s, but this particular vice might be a bit harder to give up: sweets.

As Newsmax reports, a new study finds that people with a serious sweet tooth could be at heightened risk for developing dementia.

Maybe that’s not a surprise. After all, no one’s ever said that sugar is good for you. And we’ve always known that there’s a clear connection between diabetes and dementia. We’ve just never understood why they’re connected, or how. Until now.

The new study finds that excessive consumption of sugar can damage the hippocampus nerve, which is directly linked to human memory and the sense of smell. Over a lifetime, that damage may take an irreversible toll

The findings could explain why inability to taste or smell is among the earliest indicators of dementia. Patients often see a doctor after their families detect increasing quantities of perfume or cologne, or perhaps after noticing that food begins to taste bland. Some dementia-care doctors even perform a “peanut butter test” in their clinics, asking patients to smell a jar of the paste and report the strength of its aroma.

Newsmax cites experts who go so far as to call Alzheimer’s “Type 3 diabetes,” a condition for which weight gain and sugar-related inflammation may be a leading cause. If that were to be true, it could herald a revolutionary change in the way we understand dementia and approach its prevention.

Of course, there’s no clear consensus yet. The newest study demands additional research, and scientists will need to learn a lot more about the relationship between Alzheimer’s and dementia before officially endorsing any changes in treatment protocols. But there’s no question that limiting your sugar intake to a reasonable amount will benefit your body.

Dementia remains a growing threat to America’s ever-aging senior population, so it’s imperative that we all do what we can to head it off. That includes prevention and planning. Here at Medina Law Group, we encourage the former while focusing on the latter, helping our clients prepare for the potentiality of dementia and ensuring that they’re legally and financially covered should they ever face that diagnosis in the future. Give us a call to learn more about out how we can help.