Are you prone to dementia if you become diabetic at a young age?
People with diabetes (type 2 diabetes) are known to be prone to dementia. It is said that the
risk of dementia is about twice as high as that of people without diabetes.
Furthermore, it has recently been reported that the younger the age at which diabetes
develops, the higher the risk of subsequent dementia.
Relationship between diabetes and dementia
Why is it easy to develop dementia when you have diabetes?
One reason is that if diabetes continues to be hyperglycemic, blood vessels will be damaged
and arteriosclerosis will progress. This increases the risk of vascular dementia.
It is also known that not only vascular dementia but also Alzheimer’s dementia is likely to
When a protein called “amyloid β” begins to accumulate in the brain, “amyloid plaques” are
gradually formed in the brain, and nerve cells eventually die, which is known to be the main
cause of Alzheimer’s disease. When blood vessels are damaged due to diabetes, the ability
to excrete this “amyloid β” is reduced, and it is believed that Alzheimer’s disease is also
likely to occur.
The younger the age at onset of diabetes, the more likelihood of developing dementia.
In addition, studies published by researchers at the University of Paris in France found that
the younger the age at the onset of diabetes, the higher the risk of subsequent dementia.
In this study, we investigated the relationship between the age of onset of diabetes and
dementia using data from medical records and studies of civil servants in London, England.
Of the 10,095 participants (ages 35-55 years as of 1985 to 1988), 1,710 developed diabetes
during the follow-up period to 2019 (median 31.7 years); of those, there were 639 diagnosed
The incidence of dementia (1,000 people / year) was 8.9 for those without diabetes at the
age of 70, but the incidence of dementia increased as the age of developing diabetes
・ People who developed diabetes between the ages of 65 and 70 …… 10.0 (1,000 people /
・ People who developed diabetes between the ages of 60 and 65 …… 13.0 (same as
・ People who developed diabetes before the age of 60 …………………… 18.3 people (same
If you become diabetic below the age of 60, your risk of dementia is more than doubled
In this study, when the incidence of developing dementia in people without diabetes at the
age of 70 was set to “1”, the rate for people who developed diabetes before the age of 60
was “2.12” times. The rate for those who developed the disease between the ages of 60
and 65 was reported at “1.49” times, and those who developed the disease between the
ages of 65 and 70 were reported at “1.11” times.
Since diabetes has almost no subjective symptoms at the initial stage, it is easy for it to be
overlooked even if the blood sugar level and HbA1c (hemoglobin A1c) level are slightly high
upon medical examination. However, the scary part of diabetes is that the risk of future
illnesses, including dementia, increases.
If you have high blood sugar or HbA1c, start by reviewing your lifestyle.
◎ “Association Between Age at Diabetes Onset and Subsequent Risk of Dementia”