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The Effects of Blood Glucose Levels on Cognitive Performance: A Review of the LiteratureThe purpose of this review paper is to discuss the research literature on the effects of blood glucose levels on executive and non-executive functions in humans. The review begins with a brief description of blood glucose, how it has been studied, previous syntheses of prior studies, and basic results regarding the role of blood glucose on cognitive functioning. The following sections describe work that investigated the effect of blood glucose on both non-executive and executive functions (e.g., sensory processing, psychomotor functioning, attention, vigilance, memory, language and communication, judgement and decision-making, and complex task performance). Within each section, summaries of the findings and challenges to the literature are included. Measurement conversions of blood glucose levels, blood glucose values, and associated symptoms are depicted. References to the types of tests used to investigate blood glucose and cognitive performance are provided. For more detailed descriptions of references within (and in addition to) this paper, an annotated bibliography is also provided. Several moderator variables including individual differences and contextual variables related to the effects of blood glucose levels on performance (e.g., age, gender, time of day, familiarity with the task and symptom awareness, expectancy effects, dose dependent effects, time dependent effects, task specific effects, rising and falling blood glucose levels, and speed and/or accuracy trade-offs) are addressed later in the paper. Some suggestions for future experimental methodologies are also made.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Ames Research Center
Document Type
Technical Memorandum (TM)
Feldman, Jolene
(San Jose State Univ. Moffett Field, CA, United States)
Barshi, Immanuel
(NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
August 23, 2013
Publication Date
June 1, 2007
Subject Category
Aerospace Medicine
Report/Patent Number
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 21-1614-3718
CONTRACT_GRANT: 21-1614-3718
WBS: WBS 457280.
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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