Can Risk Of Diabetes Be Reduced By Drinking More Coffee?

Coffee is a beverage that is loved and consumed by millions of people yet its role in health is somehow controversial. Over the years, numerous studies were conducted on its effect, either good or bad, on heart disease, diabetes and other disease but no definite conclusion has been arrived so far.

A study done on more than 14,600 people in Finland, the heaviest coffee-drinking country, provided more evidence in March 2004 that the world’s most widely consumed beverage may reduce diabetes risk.

Women in Finland who drank 3 to 4 cups of coffee daily had a 29 percent reduced risk of diabetes. Among men, the same amount of coffee consumed lowered the risk by 27 percent. The apparent protective effect, the mechanism of which remains a mystery, increased with consumption. Women who had intake of 10 or more cups a day had nearly 80 percent lowered risk, while men who had the same intake cut their risk by 55 percent. The average coffee consumption of Finns is 9 cups per day and the country tops world per capita consumption at more than 10.8 kg a person annually, according to the study.

The findings of this study were quiet similar to the results revealed by Harvard researchers earlier in January 2004. The study was done on 125,000 people and found that men who drank 6 cups a day cut their diabetes risk by half over 12 to 18 years, while women who drank the same amount of coffee had a 30 percent lower risk. Another research by Dutch had also confirmed a similar effect.

A report published in Journal of The American Medical Association revealed a clear evidence for an inverse and graded association between coffee consumption and type-II diabetes independent of other risk factors. Because the Finnish population drinks more coffee than other populations, it is possible to determine the risk of diabetes at high levels of coffee consumption. The report also mentioned that the reasons for the apparent beneficial effects remain unclear, although it was possible that chlorogenic acid in coffee may indirectly help regulate blood glucose levels. Nevertheless, the report did stated that caffeine stimulates insulin secretion by the pancreas has been well documented.

The American Heart Association has also said that studies looking at a direct link between caffeine, coffee, and heart disease have produced conflicting results, but that 1 or 2 cups a day does not seem harmful.

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