Most Americans enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning. For years many people thought that coffee wasn’t the healthiest beverage, but research has shown that there are many benefits to it. One of those benefits might be preventing or reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to some research.
There are more than 15 published studies on coffee and type 2 diabetes. Most of those show that coffee may prevent developing the disease. One study revealed that decaf might have the same effect as caffeinated coffee.
According to WebMD, Frank Hu, MD, MPH, PhD, nutrition and epidemiology professor at Harvard School of Public Health, his team reviewed nine studies on coffee and type 2 diabetes. The results showed that people who drank more than six or seven cups of coffee each day had a 35% less chance of getting type 2 diabetes than those who drank two or fewer cups. But you don’t have to drink that much to still benefit. Those that drank four to six cups of coffee each day had a 28% lower risk of becoming diabetic.
Even though the studies are impressive, there is no proof that coffee itself prevents diabetes. Participants may lead healthier lifestyles or do other things to reduce their risk.
A more recent study in Australia showed that for every cup of coffee, the risk of getting diabetes reduces by 7%.
Hu speculated that the reason coffee might prevent diabetes is because of the antioxidants. The beverage also has magnesium and chromium. Those two minerals help the body use insulin.
Even though the studies on coffee and diabetes are interesting, researchers are still unsure of exactly why coffee drinkers have a less risk of developing type 2 diabetes. This doesn’t mean that you should increase your coffee intake based on these findings. More studies need to be done to determine if coffee really does reduce the risk.