Advanced Glycation Endproducts

AGEs

AGEs play a pivotal role in the development of chronic age-related diseases such as diabetes, renal failure and cardiovascular disease.

AGEs and diabetes

The gradual increase or accumulation of AGEs in diabetes is an important cause of complications of the blood vessels in this disease. In persons with diabetes, there is a higher risk of heart attack and stroke due to damaged large blood vessels, but also of blindness and kidney failure, due to damage of small blood vessels.

Many diabetes patients will know that so-called glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) is used to see if their blood sugar levels are well controlled. AGEs are not the same as HbA1c, because the changes in AGEs are much slower. Important is that AGEs are a better predictor of the risk of diabetes, heart attack and stroke. Not only the high blood sugar levels and accumulation of AGEs, but also high blood pressure, cholesterol/lipid levels and smoking increase this risk. Information on all these so-called risk factors is very important for your doctor to make the right decisions on starting or changing treatment.

AGEs are also externally formed by the heating of food and are taken up by the body. Examples of food with very high level of AGEs are cola and creme brulee. Another source of AGEs intake is due to smoking.

Read more about the accumulation of Advanced Glycation Endproducts.

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