A healthy body produces a healthy mind. When the body starts to break down, from metabolic disorders, diseases or aging, the brain also begins to deteriorate. Keeping your mind strong requires proper nutrition, a healthy lifestyle and exercise – including memory games and learning memory techniques that can stimulate the brain.

Metabolic Disorders, like diabetes, occur when your body is not able to break down and absorb the food you eat. Since food is your body’s fuel, and what you eat affects how your entire body functions, a disruption in the fuel absorption also hinders how your brain functions, and why you will lose your memory.

Scientists are placing a lot of emphasis on identifying how brain cells selectively degenerate in those who are experiencing the most common type of mental and memory decline – those diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. They are especially interested in how metabolic syndrome (MetS), the precursor to metabolic disorder, relates to the specific functions in the brain, and could contribute to its decline. Their findings can then definitively link memory loss as one of the results of a metabolic disorder.

Metabolic Syndrome is comprised of a group of risk factors that, when put together, increase your risk of diabetes, stroke and coronary artery disease. These two most important factors being a higher fat content around your middle, and resistance to the insulin produced naturally in your body to regulate your blood sugar. Too much sugar in your body, or too little, has an effect on all the functions in your body, including your kidneys and your brain.

A French study, conducted through three cities and consisting of 7087 men and women aged 65 and older who exhibited at least 3-5 markers for cardio-metabolic abnormalities, which included:

  • Hypertension
  • Low, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL)
  • Hyperglycemia
  • Significant amount of fat around the waistline
  • High levels of triglycerides – fatty molecules

The subjects in the study were given a series of visual, memory and language tests and then divided into groups according to age, gender, education levels, IQ scores, and if they tested for a high or low level of a protein-like substance, beta-amyloid 42. The beta-amyloid 42 substance has recently been found to be a potential indicator for doctors to foretell if a person is at risk for developing Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. If so, they will be able to administer a simple blood test that will unveil a predisposition to this condition.

The conclusion of this French study was that generally MetS, and several of its markers, have a negative impact on memory as well as other cognitive functions in older people.

Through this, as well as other similar group studies, scientists are getting closer to identifying factors that could lead up to mental decline. These studies also were encouraging in the fact that a healthy lifestyle – balanced diet, exercise, no smoking or excessive alcohol consumption, combined with things to keep the brain stimulated, will stave off dementia.

With this in mind, learning proper nutrition and exercise, in conjunction with memory training classes, and learning good memory techniques, will go far in helping people to live a better quality of life.

For further information on memory training, check out Ron White, the memory expert, and his schedule of classes and seminars.


Neurology website – Article: Metabolic syndrome and cognitive decline in French elders: The Three-City Study: http://www.neurology.org/content/76/6/518.full?sid=191d6cc0-06be-40b6-9074-11c81e6aefa4

Science AAA’s website- Alzheimer’s disease: a disorder of cortical cholinergic innervation: http://www.sciencemag.org/content/219/4589/1184.short

Neurological Review – The Role of Metabolic Disorders in Alzheimer Disease and Vascular Dementia: http://archneur.ama-assn.org/cgi/reprint/66/3/300.pdf

Medline Plus – Genetic Brain Disorders: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/geneticbraindisorders.html