As I mentioned a few months ago in this newsletter, researchers are now looking at Alzheimer’s disease as a new form of diabetes and the expressions “Type 3 Diabetes” and “Diabetes of the Brain” have been coined. More specifically, in Alzheimer’s disease the brain loses its ability to burn glucose or blood sugar for energy.
As we are all taught in school, the brain – unlike other tissues – cannot burn fat for energy, so as it loses the ability to burn sugar it rapidly becomes starved for energy and begins to die. One thing that is always omitted in physiology classes is that while there is no doubt that brain cells cannot burn fat, they do have an alternative energy source, aside from sugar: ketones.
Not only can the brain use ketones for energy, it will use them preferentially over glucose when they are available, and it appears to function optimally when using ketones as its main source of energy.
Read More »