Scientists are Asking: Is Alzheimer's Actually Type 3 Diabetes?
We have known for a while that there is a traceable link between diabetes and Alzheimer's disease. Last September, the LA Times published an article stating that diabetics are twice as likely to develop the disease.
But we've never truly understood the connection between diabetes and Alzheimer's because, until recently, we haven't known what exactly causes Alzheimer's. When someone develops the disease, an odd form of protein takes the place of normal brain cells, but we've never known how those proteins got there.
Insulin and Alzheimer's
Suzanne de la Monte, a neuropathologist at Brown University, designed a study to try to isolate this phenomenon and find out why these proteins develop. She conducted an experiment on rats and found when she blocked insulin's path to the rat's brain, its neurons would deteriorate. Soon their brains began to show the signs of Alzheimer's.
We already knew that diabetics are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer's, but, as New York Times writer Mark Bittman said, "What’s new is the thought that while diabetes doesn’t 'cause' Alzheimer’s, they have the same root: an over consumption of those 'foods' that mess with insulin’s many roles."
If further research proves this to be accurate, the days of living in fear of Alzheimer's will be over. People will no longer have to wonder how or why the disease might develop in their bodies. Instead, it will mean that each person has control over whether they develop the disease simply by controlling what foods they put in their mouths.