Americans spend an average of 40 billion dollars per year on coffee and 54 % of American adults consume it on a daily basis. Some good news for all of you coffee drinkers out there is that emerging evidence suggests that drinking coffee may do more than just give you that extra energy boost to get through your day; it may also reduce your risk for developing type-2 diabetes. In fact, one study, conducted in 2009, found that individuals who drank 4 or more cups of coffee daily had a 50 % lower risk of diabetes and each additional cup consumed resulted in an additional 7 % decreased risk (Archives of Internal Medicine). Prompted by this study, scientists at Wuhan University in China set-out to find exactly how coffee may reduce the risk for diabetes.
Type-2 diabetes is a disease that is characterized by chronic high blood sugar levels caused by an inability to produce, and/or an insensitivity to the hormone that regulates glucose levels – insulin. Diabetics have a greater risk of stroke, blindness, renal failure and colon cancer and the chronic high blood sugar levels that they suffer from, can result in bothersome symptoms such as fatigue, excessive thirst, vision problems and muscle cramps.
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The Effect of Coffee on Diabetes
It should be noted that this study was done in cells, and more research needs to be done to determine if coffee has the same diabetes prevention effects in humans. In addition, adding sugar or cream to your coffee would likely hinder the possible beneficial effects, because sugar and cream negatively affect your glucose levels. According to U.S. diabetes expert Dr. Vivian Fonseca, it is way too soon to be recommending coffee for the prevention of diabetes. Until further research is done, your best bet for reducing your risk for developing diabetes is to consume a healthy diet high in fiber and whole foods and to maintain a healthy body weight; both of which will prevent the chronic high blood sugar levels associated with diabetes. Exercising regularly will also help to keep your glucose levels steady and dramatically lower you diabetes risk