By Mary Kekatos Health Reporter For Dailymail.com
Published: 22:00 BST, 9 July 2019 | Updated: 22:00 BST, 9 July 2019
Insulin nasal spray may improve cognitive function in obese and prediabetic teenagers, new research finds.
Typically, the hormone is used to regulate blood sugar and metabolism in those who have diabetes.
But scientists found that inhaled insulin reaches the brain directly, boosting memory and improving connectivity between regions of the brain associated with cognitive performance.
The team, from the Yale School of Medicine in Connecticut, says the findings are preliminary, but suggest that not only does obesity lead to poor memory but also that insulin can reverse it.
Preliminary findings from Yale School of Medicine found that teenagers with high BMIs performed better on memory tasks after inhaling insulin than their peers who inhaled a placebo (file image)
Previous studies have shown that insulin travels directly to brain, where it can influence regions that play a role in memory and appetite.
In people who have type 2 diabetes, the body becomes resistant to the insulin it produces naturally.
But when the brain becomes resistant to insulin, memory declines, which could lead to an increased risk of dementia.
Scientists are not yet sure how dementia and diabetes are connected, but what is known is that diabetes increases the risk of heart disease and stroke, which damages blood vessels and causes inflammation.
According to the Alzheimer's Association, damaged blood vessels and inflammation can