-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC
Since coffee was first linked to reducing diabetes risk, there is increasing info unlikely just related to caffeine
(Published on Dec. 14, 2009) Senior citizens today have learned that their favorite drink is coffee as a few days before there was news that coffee appears to considerably reduce the risk of prostate cancer. It also appears to reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes which is a major threat for older Americans. In the current issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, according to an analysis, even better, regular or decaffeinated coffee as well as tea all work.
According to background information in the article that looked at previous studies, nearly 380 million individuals, mostly seniors worldwide will be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, by the year 2025. The authors write that, “Although obesity and physical inactivity have constantly been reported to increase the risk of diabetes mellitus, the role of specific dietary and lifestyle factors remains questionable, despite considerable research attention.” The amount of available information has increased since a meta-analysis that was previously published suggested that consumption of coffee may be linked with a reduced risk.
Published between 1966 and 2009, 18 studies were identified by Rachel Huxley, D.Phil, of The George Institute for International Health, University of Sydney, Australia, and colleagues, which involved 457,922 participants and assessed the association between coffee consumption and diabetes risk. There was also information about decaffeinated coffee that was included by six studies involving 225,516 individuals, whilst on the contrary; there were reports on tea consumption by seven studies involving 286,701 participants.
There was an affiliation with a 7 percent reduction in the excess risk of diabetes and each additional cup of coffee consumed in a day, that the authors found when they combined and analyzed the data. Unlike individuals who drank between zero and two cups per day , those who drank three to four cups per day, had approximately 25 percent lower risk. Besides, those who drank more than three to four cups per day had about a one-third lower risk of diabetes than those who drank none, according to the studies that assessed decaffeinated coffee consumption. Whereas, those who drank more than three to four cups of tea had a one-fifth lower risk.
The authors write that, “The possibility of direct biological effects increases, when the apparent protective effect of tea and coffee consumption appears to be autonomous, of a number of potentially confounding variables.”
The authors also note that, when decaffeinated coffee and diabetes risk is linked, the association is unlikely to be solely related to caffeine as other compounds in coffee and tea may be involved with inclusion of magnesium, antioxidants known as lignans or chlorogenic acids.
In conclusion, they state that, “The implications for millions of individuals, who have diabetes mellitus, or who have a risk of developing it in future, would be significantly great, if such beneficial effects were observed, in interventional trials, to be real. For example, new therapeutic pathways would open up with the similarity of the active components of these beverages for the primary prevention of diabetes mellitus. It could also be conceived that we will advise our patients who are highly prone to diabetes mellitus, that besides increasing their levels of physical activity and weight loss, they also need to increase their consumption of tea and coffee.”