Coffee drinking could reduce risk of diabetes

Researchers have said coffee drinkers are about half as likely to develop type 2 diabetes as those who don’t drink coffee.

This was revealed based on findings from a long-term study.

According to Demosthenes B. Panagiotakos of the department of Nutrition and Dietetics at Harokopio University in Athens, Greece;

“Extensive research has revealed that coffee drinking exhibits both beneficial and aggravating health effects”

He however pointed out that since he and his colleagues merely observed the study participants, and didn’t assign them randomly to drink or abstain from coffee, they still can’t be sure that drinking coffee helps prevent diabetes, but their findings might help form the basis of a cause-and-effect hypothesis.

According to Reuters, in 2001 and 2002, the researchers selected a random sample of more than 1,300 men and women age 18 years and older in Athens.

The participants filled out dietary questionnaires including questions about coffee drinking frequency.

The participants also had blood tests to evaluate levels of protein markers of inflammation. The tests also measured antioxidant levels, which indicate the body’s ability to neutralize cell-damaging “free radicals.”

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10 years later, 191 people had developed diabetes, including 13% of the men and 12% of the women in the original group.

Also participants who reported higher coffee consumption had lower likelihoods of developing diabetes, with  54% less likely to develop diabetes compared to non-coffee drinkers, even after accounting for smoking, high blood pressure, family history of diabetes and intake of other caffeinated beverages.

Research authors also wrote that levels of serum amyloid, one of the inflammatory markers in the blood, seemed to explain some of the relationship between coffee and diabetes.

Higher coffee consumption went along with lower amyloid levels.

Panagiotakos also added that the new findings are supported by a prospective study in 2013 involving 836 people who didn’t have diabetes at the start of the study, over the next 7 years, high levels of amyloid and another inflammatory marker called C-reactive protein “were found to precede the onset of diabetes, independently of other risk factors,”

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