Linking Alzheimer’s Disease with Diabetes Conference

Linking Alzheimer’s Disease with Diabetes: consequences for population health and the food and beverage industries  

Evening Conference
15th March 2018 - 5.00-8.00pm
University of Reading, Whiteknights Campus, Henley Business School, RG6 6UD.

A joint event between the AgriFood Training Partnership (AFTP), Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics (CINN), Institute for Food Nutrition and Health (IFNH) and Alzheimer’s Reseach UK (ARUK).

The link between Type II Diabetes (Diabetes mellitus) and vascular dementia is well established, with both conditions affected by patient maturity, obesity and a poor diet. Microvascular disease caused by this combination of risk factors damages blood vessels and causes poor blood circulation, leading to retinopathy (blindness), lower limb disease and dementia. More recent research has provided a causative link between Type II Diabetes and the form of dementia known as Alzheimer’s Disease, to the extent that Alzheimer’s is sometimes referred to Type III Diabetes. Amyloid deposits, caused by the body's own proteins accumulating as abnormal fibres that damage organs and tissues, are associated with Alzheimer's Disease when they localise in the brain and Type II Diabetes when they localise in the pancreas. Patients with Type II Diabetes have twice the risk of healthy individuals of developing Alzheimer’s Disease.

The establishment of causal links between Type II Diabetes, which is largely associated with an unhealthy lifestyle and diet, and Alzheimer’s Disease has consequences for policy makers, the health service and the food industry. The cost of healthcare is set to escalate on an unprecedented scale and food manufacturers are coming under increasing pressure to remove or replace sugar in their products. This evening conference will have contributions from those involved in setting nutritional policy on sugar intake (Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition - SACN), researchers who will explain the evidence behind the diseases, and representatives of the food industry who will discuss how they are responding to the demands of government and consumers for a reduced sugar diet through reformulation or using sugar alternatives.

Confirmed Speakers to Date (Full Programme will appear soon):

  • Professor Anne-Marie Minihane (University of East Anglia), who receives ARUK funding for some of her research, will discuss diet, physical activity and dementia risk in UK adults.

  • Professor Jeremy Spencer (University of Reading, CINN, IFNH) will discuss the evidence linking diet with cognitive function.

  • Professor Julian Cooper (formerly of British Sugar plc) will discuss the challenges of reformulation for sugars reduction – including unintended consequences for calorie intake.

Who should attend?

The conference is relevant for food and beverage industry professionals who are involved in manufacturing, product design or commercial sales and marketing. Nutritionists, dieticians and academics working in food science, healthcare, or biomedical or cognitive research should also attend. It takes place in the middle of the campus workshop associated with the AFTP’s “Diet Quality and Health” course and course participants will be able to attend the evening conference for free.

The organisers will seek to have the event accredited by the Association for Nutrition as CPD and registration details, attendance costs and a final conference schedule will appear in the New Year.


50% of all registration fees for this event will be donated directly to Alzheimer’s Research UK – the charity supported by the Director of the AFTP, Carol Wagstaff, in her bid to run the 2018 London Marathon. You can follow Carol's training and progress via #movingformemory.

Early bird industry rate (on or before 9th Feb): £90 of which £45 goes to ARUK
Early bird academic rate (on or before 9th Feb): £50 of which £25 goes to ARUK

Full price industry (from 10th Feb onwards): £150 of which £75 goes to ARUK
Full price academic  (from 10th Feb onwards): £90 of which £45 goes to ARUK

Online registration and payment method will be published shortly but to register your interest and to be kept updated on this event please email; with the subject line 'Diabetes Conference'.

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