Glucose Effects On Memory Essay, Research Paper
GLUCOSE EFFECTS ON MEMORY AND OTHER
NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL TESTS IN ELDERLY HUMANS
The purpose of this kind of test was to find out if the level of glucose had any kind of effect on the memory. Another goal of this experiment was to determine whether glucose affects memory on other tests as well, and whether the glucose effects are restricted to memory or whether they include effects on overall cognitive, attention and motor functions. The test was done on the subjects, 17 volunteers between the ages of 62-84. The subjects took the test in the morning after a 9 hours fasting. Their blood glucose was measured at the beginning of the test, then the subjects were given sweetened beverages with either glucose (50g) or saccharine (23.7 mg). Blood glucose levels were measured every 15 minutes thereafter for the next hour and a half.
The subjects were asked to read a list of words and remember them. The test was scored for long-term storage, retrieval and short-term retrieval. Also other tests were considered such as: logical memory, digit span, complex figures, cognition, attention and motor. Logical memory is a modified version of the Wechsler Memory Scale that is hearing an audiotape and asks the subjects five minutes later to recall the passage. Digit span that include forward and backward digits. Rey Oterreith compex figure: subjects were asked to copy a complex design following which they were asked to draw the design from memory. Cognition: this test assesses verbal intelligence by requiring the subject to choose the picture which best matches each of a series of words from a set of four pictures. Attention is a timed task in which subjects mark designated letters from a large list of letters. Motor: subjects were required to press down a lever attached to a counter as quickly as possible over a ten second period and were given five tries with each hand.
The results were obtained and analyses have been made according to the relationships between increases in glucose levels and performance, and relationships across neuropsychological tests. The performance on the logical memory test was significantly enhanced after glucose ingestion. The beverage sweetened with glucose increased blood glucose levels. It was so obvious that this experiment suggests that glucose ingestion enhances performance on memory tests in elderly subjects. The enhancement of memory was observed on two declarative memory tests, the selective reminding test and logical memory subtest. Digits span did not show a glucose effect. Also the glucose did not affect the short-term memory neither it affected the figure design. Moreover, the glucose did not affect any of the cognitive, attention, or motor functions.