Low blood sugar levels are known to cause cognitive and behavioral changes in diabetics, but results of a recent study show that high blood sugar has a similar effect.
The study showed that type 2 diabetics have impaired cognitive functioning and experience deterioration in mood when their blood sugar is high. Diabetics' bodies have difficulty controlling blood sugar levels due to insulin deficiencies. Patients often have to check their blood sugar levels multiple times during the day and rely on insulin injections to help control these levels. Because the brain depends on a constant source of sugar to function, blood sugar levels can decline rapidly, and that low level impacts cognitive function and mood.
For this study, researchers observed 20 people with type 2 diabetes. The individuals had their blood taken and were put through a series of tests that involved information processing, memory, attention and mood.The study showed the speed at which they were able to process information, their working memories, and some aspects of attention were all impaired when blood sugar was high. Additionally, patients experienced times of dysphoria, reduced energy, and increased sadness and anxiety.
Thus researchers conclude saying that these findings are important because intermittent or chronic episodes of high blood sugar are common in type 2 diabetics and may interfere with daily functioning.