Type 2 Diabetes: Coffee Compounds That Can Help Prevent Disease

First Posted: Dec 02, 2015 12:45 PM EST

Coffee lovers can continue to preach about the health benefits of their favorite drink, as a study from the American Chemical Society has linked consumption of three to four cups per day to a lowered risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. The research team, along with previous studies, have shown that event the decaffeinated version of the drink can aid in lowered risk.

Originally, researchers believed that caffeine was responsible for the lowered risk, but studies have revealed that it only has a short-term affect on glucose and insulin, the two main components in patients that suffer from diabetes. Type 2 Diabetes, which accounts for roughly 90 percent of the world's diabetes cases, causes patients to become insulin-resistant, which prevents their bodies from turning glucose into energy. This results in the pancreas overcompensating by making more insulin, but it cannot overcome the resistance, and it can lead to serious consequences, like blindness and nerve damage.

Published in the Journal of Natural Products, the study identified two compounds, cafestol and caffeic acid, that were responsible for the prevention of diabetes development. Caffeic acid is found in all plants, and has shown anti-imflammatory and immunomodulatory activity. Cafestol has previously been found to have anticarinogenic properties when tested in rats, as well as having effects on cholesterol metabolism

The team tested several different coffee substances in rat cell lines, with both cafestol and caffeic acid showing to increase insulin secretion when glucose was added. Cafetsol was also found to increase glucose uptake in muscle cells, to the point that it matched a currently used antidiabetic drug on the market, according to a news release.

Cafestol's dual benefits have given the researchers reason to believe that it is an excellent candidate for prevention and treatment of Type 2 Diabetes. However, despite that, the team recognized that coffee filters in drip coffee eliminate much of the cafestol in the coffee, leading the team to believe that additional compounds contribute to diabetic prevention as well.

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