Glucose Review Article

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Rationale: Energy is the capacity for work, or the expenditure of effort. Glucose is a primary energy for the brain, and the brain uses glucose to perform the psychological work of thought and behavior.

Hypothesis: Glucose levels are therefore hypothesized to represent the capacity for thought and behavior, with effortful thought and behavior being impaired when glucose levels are lower than optimal.

Summary of Results

  1. (number) relevant findings:
  2. (number) supporting hypothesis: (have percent too, calculate percent?)
  3. (number) rejecting hypothesis
  4. (number) supporting null hypothesis

Conclusion: Experimental work confirms that lower glucose levels undermine effortful psychological processes, including self-control, memory, and perhaps performance on difficult tasks.


Relevant Evidence

Citation Finding(s)

Conclusion:
Support Hypothesis
Reject Hypothesis
Supports Null Hypothesis

1

Benton, Owens, & Parker (1994)

Glucose drink, compared to placebo, improved memory

Support

2

Lee & Bernicky (1999)

Glucose levels not related to daily living skills (showering, toileting, and dressing) in patient with brain injury

Null

3

Meikle, Riby, & Stollery (2004)

Glucose drink, compared to placebo, improved memory

Supports

4

Metzger (2000)

Glucose drink, compared to placebo, improved recognition memory for faces

Supports

5

Messier, Desrochers, & Gagnon (1999)

Glucose drink, compared to placebo, improved memory

Supports

6

Fucetola, Newcomer, Craft, & Meslon (1999)

Glucose drink, compared to placebo, improved memory recall and performance on a delayed match to sample task among older participants. Glucose drink, relative to placebo, impaired attention among younger participants.

Supports (for older participants). Rejects (for younger participants).

7

Messier, Pierre, Desrochers, & Gravel (1998)

Supplementary glucose increased the primacy effect.

Supports

8

Mohanty & Flint (2001)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, reduced memory for emotional stimuli but improved memory for neutral stimuli.

Rejects (for emotional stimuli). Supports (for neutral stimuli).

9

Martin & Benton (1999)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved memory performance on the Brown-Peterson task among participants who had fasted but not among participants who had not fasted.

Supports (among fasted participants). Null (among non-fasted participants).

10

Donohoe & Benton (1999)

Glucose drink improved performance on the Porteus Maze and Verbal Fluency tasks.

Supports

11

Manning, Honn, Stone, Jane, & Gold (1998)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved long-term memory and auditory processing.

Supports

13

Foster, Lidder, & Sunram (1998)

Glucose drink, relative to placebos, improved long-term verbal free recall task and cued recall task but not on other memory tasks.

Supports (for long-term verbal free recall task and cued recall task). Null (for other memory tasks).

14

Winder & Borrill (1998)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, did not influence memory.

Null

15

Manning, Stone, Korol, & Gold (1998)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved memory storage and retrieval for narrative-prose material.

Supports

16

Green, Elliman, & Rogers (1997)

Glucose levels unrelated to cognitive processing fluency.

Null

17

Driesen, Cox, Gonder-Frederick, & Clarke (1995)

Low glucose levels, relative to higher levels, correlated with slower reaction times.

Supports

18

Gold, Deary, MacLeod, Thomson, & Frier (1995)

Low glucose levels, relative to higher levels, correlated with poorer cognitive performance.

Supports

19

Allen, Gross, Aloia, & Billingsley (1996)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved memory recall (of the Rey/Taylor Figure), verbal fluency, and figural fluency.

Supports

20

Blake, Varnhagen, & Parent (2001)

Emotional material increased glucose levels and improved memory for the material.

Supports

21

Scholey, Harper, & Kennedy (2001)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved performance on math problems and a word retrieval task (non-significant trend) but not on a word memory task.

Supports (for math and word retrieval). Null (for word memory).

22

Warburton, Bersellini, & Sweeney (2001)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, did not influence performance on a visual information test, verbal reasoning test, verbal memory test, and non-verbal memory test.

Null

23

Sunram-Lea, Foster, Durlach, & Perez (2002)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved memory for words while performing a secondary task, and improved spatial and working memory, but did not influence memory for words without performing a secondary task and did not influence other memory performance.

Supports (for some tasks). Null (for other tasks).

24

Awad, Gagnon, Desrochers, Tsiakas, & Messier (2002)

Higher glucose levels, relative to lower levels, associated with poorer memory performance.

Rejects

25

Craft, Dagogo-Jack, Wiethop, Murphy, et al. (1993)

Low glucose levels, relative to higher levels, associated with poorer memory performance among patients with Alzheimer’s.

Supports

26

Hall, Gonder-Frederick, Chewning, Silveira, et al. (1989)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved performance on Wechsler Memory Scale

Supports

27

Lingenfelser, Overkamp, Renn, Hamster, et al. (1992)

Low glucose levels, relative to higher glucose levels, associated with impaired cognitive and psychomotor function.

Supports

28

Cromer, Tarnowski, Stein, Harton, Paul, et al. (1990)

Low glucose levels, relative to higher glucose levels, unrelated to short-term auditory memory, vigilance, and impulsivity.

Null

29

Benton, Brett, & Brain (1987)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved attention and reduced frustration.

Supports

30

Benton (1990)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved performance sooner on a reaction time task.

Supports

31

Cueto, Jacoby, & Pollitt (1998)

Glucose levels were unrelated to performance on cognitive tests, namely on number discrimination, Peabody Picture Vocabulary, Raven Progressive Matrices, stimulus discrimination, reaction times, and Sternberg Memory Search.

Null

32

Utter, Kang, Robertson, Nieman, Chaloupka, Suminski, & Piccinni (2002)

A glucose drink, compared to placebo, increased running intensity among marathon runners.

Supports

33

Ford, Scholey, Ayre, & Wesnes (2002)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, did not influence memory for neutral or emotional words.

Null

34

Green, Elliman, & Rogers (1997)

Glucose levels unrelated to cognitive processing efficiency.

Null

35

Morris & Sarll (2001)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved performance on listening span task among students who missed breakfast.

Supports

36

Pettersen & Skelton (2000)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved declarative memory among previously concussed participants and to impair declarative memory among non-concussed participants.

Supports (among concussed) Rejects (among non-concussed)

37

Messier & Gagnon (1996)

Glucose drink, relative to baseline, improved memory.

Supports

38

Manning, Hall, & Gold (1990)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved declarative memory but not short-term memory.

Supports (for declarative memory). Null (for short-term memory)

39

Allen, Gross, Aloia, & Billingsley (1996)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved recall of the Rey/Taylor Figure, verbal fluency, and figural fluency.

Supports

40

Lingenfelser, Overkamp, Renn, Hamster, Boughey, Eggstein, & Jakober (1992)

Low glucose associated with impaired performance on most cognitive tasks.

Supports

41

Frederick, Vogt, Cox, Green, & Gold (1987)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved performance on narrative memory tests and the Wechsler memory scale.

Supports

42

Hall, Gonder-Frederick, Chewning, Silveira, & Gold (1989)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved performance on the Wechsler memory scale.

Supports

43

Benton & Sargent (1992)

Low blood glucose correlated with poorer performance on spatial memory test.

Supports

44

Manning, Parsons, & Gold (1992)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, improved memory.

Supports

45

Messier & White (1987)

An injection of 2 but not 1 or 3 g/kg improved memory of conditioned response among rats.

Supports (for 2 g/kg) Null (for 1 or 3 g/kg)

46

Cromer, Tarnowski, Stein, Harton, & Thornton (1990)

Glucose levels unrelated to short-term auditory memory, vigilance, and impulsivity.

Rejects

47

Benton & Owens (1993)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, reduced frustration while playing a frustrating computer task following a negative statement from the experimenter.

Supports

48

Benton, Brett, & Brain (1987)

Glucose drink, relative to placebo, reduced frustration and improved attention.

Supports


Suggestions or Criticism for Improvement


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