One More Cup of Coffee a Day May Help Prevent Diabetes

Did You Know…one more cup of coffee per day cuts type 2 diabetes risk?

Listen up coffee drinkers!  We’ve got one more reason to enjoy—and indulge in—coffee.

Harvard researchers have discovered that people who added at least one more cup of coffee a day over the years were 11% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who kept their coffee intake the same.  Published in Diabetologia, a journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes, the study is a statistical analysis of three large-scale studies conducted over 20 years.  Researchers monitored the lifestyle, diet, and medical conditions of more than 120,000 medical professionals.

Previous studies have shown as much as a 50% reduction in type 2 diabetes risk from drinking four or more cups of coffee a day, but this new study was the first to analyze how changes in coffee consumption affect disease risk.

Meanwhile, people who cut back their coffee intake by at least a cup of day had a 17% greater chance of developing type 2 diabetes.

Is it the Caffeine that Staves Off Diabetes? 

As mentioned, the analysis showed that increasing coffee drinking by even just one cup a day reduced diabetes risk substantially.  Other studies have shown that it’s not the caffeine so much as it is the phenolic compounds in coffee that exert the most benefit on health.  These phenolic compounds enhance glucose metabolism, while the magnesium in coffee reduces diabetes risk—but this new study showed no positive impact on diabetes risk from increased consumption of decaf coffee.

Researchers theorize that perhaps it’s because there wasn’t a large enough number of people who changed their decaf drinking habits.  While this may be true, perhaps the caffeine in coffee exerts more of a benefit than previously thought.  For instance, results from a 2012 study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry revealed three compounds in coffee (caffeine, caffeic acid, and chlorogenic acid) that suppress the toxic accumulation of a protein linked to an increased risk for type 2 diabetes.

This above-mentioned study, however, was lab based.  Further animal and human studies will need to follow in order to confirm the beneficial activity of caffeine on lowering diabetes risk.

Coffee Reduces Chronic Disease 

The evidence that coffee consumption reduces your risk for developing chronic disease continues to mount.  A 2013 report in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition linked higher intakes of coffee with lower risks for chronic diseases.  Other studies report an association between coffee drinking and reduced risk for liver and esophageal cancer… and still other studies indicate reduced stroke risk!

Coffee is rich in antioxidants and nutrients such as:

  • Magnesium
  • Potassium
  • Manganese
  • Riboflavin
  • Pantothenic acid

That’s 5 nutrient-dense reasons to support your coffee habit.  The verdict: keep the brew flowing!