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Coffee & Health

Does Coffee Prevent Diabetes?

If coffee was a human, I’m sure by now it would be tired of the poking and pricking that has been done while trying to study the seed and the beverage that is gotten from it. Coffee has been subject to different opinions and different truths that sometimes it’s hard to believe the drink we all love is capable of some of the things we have heard.

diabetic woman drinking coffee


It was once said that coffee is bad for our body system and health, and I think this is based on the assumption that it is addictive. Truly, coffee contains caffeine — a psychoactive stimulant that acts on the nervous system — which can cause addiction. But this opinion had been debunked and trumped by the various other benefits that we get from coffee. Some of these benefits are astounding in that they might seem untrue. Some of these benefits are that:

I know some of these benefits are hardly believable because coffee is what we call “just a drink,” the drink is readily available unlike some medications and drugs for these conditions, so we find it hard to believe. But research has shown that all these things are true about coffee.

Sometimes I wonder how far the benefits of coffee are stretched because new studies and new information keep coming in that favors the interest of coffee as a beneficial beverage.

Speaking about research and studies, some have talked about how an increase in coffee intake can assist in reducing the risk of developing diabetes type 2.

For those of us who can’t go a day without a cup of coffee, it’s good news for us. It is also important to note that for those who already have type 2 diabetes, drinking coffee can aggravate the symptoms and make it bad for you. Your blood sugar is one part of your body that you shouldn’t joke with and it is what would determine if you would develop diabetes or not.  So you should know where you stand – does coffee raises your blood sugar or it doesn’t have any effect on it.

Whether you have diabetes or you don’t or you are just a coffee lover, you need to know the effects of coffee on your body such as anxiety, cholesterol , gas, etc. And its effect on diabetic patients as well.

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a condition linked with the level of sugar in your blood.

Diabetes is a disease condition that affects how your body processes the glucose in your blood: this blood glucose is also called blood sugar is very essential in our body because it is what serves as the fuel for our daily mental and physical activity. I.e. it supplies fuel to our brain, the muscles, and tissues we use for our physical activities.

What diabetes means for a person who has it is that they have a lot of sugar or glucose in their blood. This often happens when your body becomes resistant to insulin and can’t efficiently take glucose to the cells that need them for energy, and the glucose is left in the blood circulating.

When there’s excess glucose in the blood it tends to cause different health issues and although there are different other factors that can contribute to the development of diabetes, high blood glucose is one of them.

Type 1 and type 2 diabetes are chronic types of diabetes while the other types of diabetes are

Gestational diabetes is only seen in pregnant mothers and it often goes away after the child has been given birth.

Prediabetes means that a person has a high level of blood glucose, but the level is not so high that it would be considered diabetes. It’s ‘pre’ because it is what happens before diabetes is diagnosed.

Symptoms of Diabetes

  • Thirst
  • Weight loss
  • Irritability
  • Tiredness or fatigue

These things are some of the things you experience daily. But if it is recurring, you need to see a doctor.

Possible Ways Coffee Can Prevent Diabetes

The first thing to take note of here is that the effects of coffee whether beneficial or detrimental varies from one person to the other. The highest study conducted is probably the one conducted by Harvard University. Over 100,000 people were tracked by the researchers for about 20 years. The results of the study were published in 2014.

Their results summarize that they found out that people who increased the amount of coffee they take by more than a cup reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes by up to 11% while those who reduced their intake by more than a cup increased the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by up to 17%. Those who reduced their coffee consumption didn’t have any visible difference from those taking tea.

Some people think the influence coffee has on diabetes is because of caffeine, but that’s unlikely. Although caffeine has some benefits that it offers through coffee consumption, it has been associated with the increase of glucose and insulin in the body in a short term.

There’s no concrete evidence about the role of coffee in the increase of glucose and insulin in the body because a small study that was conducted on men showed that there’s a substantial rise in the level of blood sugar when only decaffeinated coffee is consumed.

Effect of Coffee on Glucose and Insulin

One of the benefits we know about coffee is that it helps us to prevent diabetes, and we also talked about how the symptoms of diabetes could be aggravated in people who already have type 2 diabetes when they drink coffee. A study in 2004 showed involved subjects taking capsules of caffeine before a meal to determine the effect on blood sugar and insulin. The result showed revealed that when they took the capsule of caffeine before a meal, it increased the level of blood sugar and also increased their insulin levels.

Another study in 2018 detected that genes could also play a role in the metabolism of caffeine and how it takes effect on caffeine. The result showed that people who genetically metabolized caffeine faster didn’t show signs of high blood glucose while those who metabolized caffeine genetically slower showed signs of high blood sugar.

Various other materials in coffee could also play some part in the effects of coffee on diabetes and the protection it gives our body.

The long-term intake and consumption of coffee could also influence its effect on glucose and insulin and how our bodies are sensitive to them. When you drink coffee for a very long time, your body starts building tolerance towards its effect and this might give room for it to offer some protective benefits. A study in 2018 for a fact revealed that some of the benefits of taking coffee for a long time are in reducing the risk of developing diabetes and prediabetes.

A study also tried to see the effect of coffee “mid-range.” The study was done for a month on people who had not been diagnosed with diabetes. In this study, some people abstained from coffee or took a liter of coffee that had been paper filtered a day. The results in people who consumed more coffee showed a significant increase in their insulin levels. This is the same thing that happens when you are fasting. Insulin levels increase in your blood. In this case, a person with type 2 diabetes won’t be able to effectively use the insulin to manage the blood sugar. This study also revealed that it would take more than one month to build tolerance.

The way people with diabetes respond to coffee is different from the way people without diabetes respond to coffee and caffeine. People who are habitual coffee drinkers would always have a spike in their blood sugar every morning because they drink coffee. This was revealed in a study that involved people with type 2 diabetes and is habitual coffee drinkers as well. The researchers had them continue taking coffee with their regular activities and every morning there’s an increase in their blood sugar levels while the levels reduced when they didn’t alé coffee.

Coffee is a drink that’s very popular because of its taste and flavor, but some of its benefits make it a drink of choice for people. Some of the health benefits it boasts of include:

  • Protection against Parkinson’s disease
  • Potential prevention of organ damage and diseases such as liver disease and cancer
  • Protection against Alzheimer’s disease
  • Protection against kidney disease such as gallstones

Some research has also identified how coffee can help people with depression.

Coffee with Additives

People without diabetes should be careful with their coffee intake because although it has some beneficial effects, taking it with added ingredients introduces a series of unhealthy carbs that could counteract some of the benefits of coffee in weight loss. And unhealthy carbs contain a very high number of calories. Cream, sweeteners, and milk are some of the added ingredients mixed with coffee.

When you mix these ingredients with your coffee it reduces the effect of the coffee and also introduces some other things themselves. They limit the beneficial and protective effects of coffee.

You are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes if you take coffee a lot and with added ingredients like mils and sugar —artificial or natural. Another thing to note is that taking a lot of sugar and milk can make you develop diabetes and obesity.

Materials like milk and cream are filled with saturated fats and sugar can add to insulin resistance in your body which has been linked to type 2 diabetes.

Risks Associated with Coffee

For people with diabetes and people without, the caffeine in coffee has some side effects when they have been taken in late quantities and these side effects are simply aggravation of the benefits. People take coffee to stay alert and send sleep on a distant journey: when these benefits are aggravated it becomes nervousness and irregular sleeping pattern. Some other side effects include

  • Becoming restless
  • Anxiety
  • Headaches

It’s the same with everything that you consume, you have to be moderate about them or you risk developing some side effects and conditions.

Other risks that could occur from consuming too much coffee are:

  • An increased rate of cholesterol in your body when you take unfiltered coffee
  • You could also develop a heartburn
  • Consuming too much coffee and with added substances and ingredients like cream and sugar could peak your body’s blood glucose or blood sugar

Some other things you should note is that,

Toddlers should stay away from coffee and adolescents — children below thirteen years— should consume less than a hundred milligrams (100 mg) caffeine every day; this means a controlled consumption of coffee and other caffeinated drinks. They should also stay away from energy drinks.

Taking your coffee without sweeteners and cream is the best way to reduce calories and the risk of developing some diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease. Etc. Taking your coffee with sweeteners and creams can increase the risk of developing diabetes and obesity.

More Emphasis

  • If you have type 2 diabetes, prediabetes or you are at risk of getting diabetes, losing weight, exercising, eating a balanced diet with dense nutrients, is the best way to safeguard yourself from developing type 2 diabetes. Because no food or drink can give you 100% protection against diabetes, at least for now.
  • Deciding to start taking coffee to get protection against coffee might be detrimental to your health. But if you’re already a coffee drinker, you don’t have much to deal with.
  • Exercise often, speak with your doctor about the kind of food you should eat, the nutrients you should add, and the effects of coffee on your body.
  • Reduce the amount of sugar and saturated fats in your drink.

Do all these, and you’re good to go.


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