It’s wonderful that the more we know about coffee, the more it’s becoming known as a “health” food – along with other goodies like dark chocolate and red wine. Research shows that daily coffee consumption significantly lowers a person’s risk of developing diabetes. The caffeine itself seems to have some benefit (the risk reduction was not as great with decaffeinated coffee). Researchers also think that a certain type of chemical found in coffee (called quinines) may help. In tests, the introduction of quinines increases one’s sensitivity to insulin. That means it takes less insulin for the body to do its job of regulating blood sugar. Other chemicals in coffee may help too, but we just don’t know yet.
In one small study of 1,000 people, current coffee drinkers had a 60% reduction of diabetes risk compared to people who never drank coffee. And in another study of 126,000 people, those who drink 1 to 3 cups of coffee daily had a decrease in their diabetes risk. For heavy coffee drinkers (six cups a day), people had a 54% reduction in diabetes risk for men and a 30% reduction in diabetes risk for women. Of course, if you’re avoiding diabetes you can’t load your cup with sugar, so it does matter how you take your coffee. But, it seems that the more we know about coffee, the better the news gets. Even one cup a day decreases your diabetes risk. So go ahead and have your guilt-free, pleasure inducing cup of coffee – it’s good for what ails you.