Presentation Title

The Bittersweet Truth: Processed Sugar and its Impact on Cognitive Function

Presenter Information

Kylie NecocheaFollow

Faculty Mentor

Lynne E Miller, Ph.D., Department of Anthropology, MiraCosta College

Start Date

17-11-2018 8:00 AM

End Date

17-11-2018 8:15 AM

Location

C155

Session

Oral 1

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Subject Area

behavioral_social_sciences

Abstract

Accumulating evidence demonstrates a correlation between cognitive impairment and the consumption of processed sugar. High rates of sugar consumption have been linked in numerous studies to short-term cognitive impairment and long-term cognitive decline. Sugar consumption naturally leads to secretion of the hormone insulin which facilitates regulation of glucose in the blood. Frequent consumption of processed sugar can lead to insulin resistance, causing inflammation and damage to the brain. The hippocampus, responsible for spatial and verbal memory, is the primary region of the brain affected by this inflammatory process.Furthermore, some studies have demonstrated that sugar has an immediate impact on cognition. This research tested the hypothesis that processed sugar consumption inhibits short-term verbal and spatial memory function in Alzheimer's patients. Subjects were four female volunteers, living in an Alzheimer’s care facility. Each subject was tested before and after consuming a processed sugar dessert. Two tests were administered in each trial. The verbal memory test required the recall of up to three words, and the spatial memory test required the correct and accurate drawing of a clock. Fifty trials were accumulated across all subjects. Results were consistent with the original hypothesis. Performance on the test of verbal memory was superior prior to sugar consumption (X2=11.27, p=0.01). Performance on the test of spatial memory was also superior before than after dessert (X2=32.00, p<0.001). This research demonstrates that sugar can significantly impact short-term cognitive functioning. Furthermore, the consumption of processed sugar is a well-established risk factor for the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. As Americans continue to increase their sugar intake and as America is confronted with an aging society, it is critical to elucidate the short- and long-term effects of processed sugar on cognitive function.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Nov 17th, 8:00 AM Nov 17th, 8:15 AM

The Bittersweet Truth: Processed Sugar and its Impact on Cognitive Function

C155

Accumulating evidence demonstrates a correlation between cognitive impairment and the consumption of processed sugar. High rates of sugar consumption have been linked in numerous studies to short-term cognitive impairment and long-term cognitive decline. Sugar consumption naturally leads to secretion of the hormone insulin which facilitates regulation of glucose in the blood. Frequent consumption of processed sugar can lead to insulin resistance, causing inflammation and damage to the brain. The hippocampus, responsible for spatial and verbal memory, is the primary region of the brain affected by this inflammatory process.Furthermore, some studies have demonstrated that sugar has an immediate impact on cognition. This research tested the hypothesis that processed sugar consumption inhibits short-term verbal and spatial memory function in Alzheimer's patients. Subjects were four female volunteers, living in an Alzheimer’s care facility. Each subject was tested before and after consuming a processed sugar dessert. Two tests were administered in each trial. The verbal memory test required the recall of up to three words, and the spatial memory test required the correct and accurate drawing of a clock. Fifty trials were accumulated across all subjects. Results were consistent with the original hypothesis. Performance on the test of verbal memory was superior prior to sugar consumption (X2=11.27, p=0.01). Performance on the test of spatial memory was also superior before than after dessert (X2=32.00, p<0.001). This research demonstrates that sugar can significantly impact short-term cognitive functioning. Furthermore, the consumption of processed sugar is a well-established risk factor for the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. As Americans continue to increase their sugar intake and as America is confronted with an aging society, it is critical to elucidate the short- and long-term effects of processed sugar on cognitive function.