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Dementia: A craving for sweets could signal the brain condition

Life & StyleDementia: A craving for sweets could signal the brain condition

The world’s approach to dementia has changed in recent years. For decades it was seen as an inevitable part of ageing, something that happened as someone got older. However, that logic has changed and now scientists know dementia is a disease, and one that could be treated, if not cured. As a result millions of pounds has flooded into the search for new treatments for dementia.

As well as investigating new treatments, resources have also been put towards identifying early signals of dementia.

Now a new study has identified how a craving for sweets could signal the early onset of dementia.

A new study, published in JAMA Neurology, suggests people with a type of dementia known as frontotemporal dementia can exhibit sudden cravings for sweets.

The study found patients with frontotemporal dementia ate more sugar and carbohydrates than those who didn’t have the condition.

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Boston University Alzheimer’s disease director, Doctor Andrew Budson: : “Most people with frontotemporal dementia start to show symptoms between the ages of 45 and 65.”

Doctor Budson added, in his experience, a change in cravings has been a warning sign for those with this form of dementia.

“Some individuals compulsively perform repetitive movements, such as turning the light switch off and on whenever they walk by it,” Doctor Budson added. “Others show a marked change in food preferences, engage in binge eating, or excessive smoking or drinking alcohol.”

Frontotemporal dementia is just one form of dementia.


Her parents, Phoebe and Joe, are hoping to raise awareness of her rare genetic condition, known as CLN2 Batten’s disease.

Just like dementia, this disease currently has no cure.

Those with the condition currently have a life expectancy of between six and 12 years.

The parents have set up a GoFundMe page in order to fund private treatment for their daughter.

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