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A study tests various effects of coffee consumption
In recent years, various studies have already suggested that consuming several cups of coffee a day could prevent type 2 diabetes. A recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has now analyzed this supposed protective effect in more detail - but with a rather disappointing result. But surprisingly, a slight weight loss was associated with coffee consumption.
How was the study structured?
126 men and women aged 35 to 69 who were overweight and had not previously had diabetes were selected for the study. These were randomly divided into two groups - at random. The first group drank four cups of caffeinated coffee daily for 24 weeks. The second group received a placebo drink that smelled and tasted like coffee but did not contain its active ingredients four times a day during the same period. The evaluation of the blood values showed no significant differences in the insulin sensitivity of both groups.
What is insulin sensitivity?
Insulin is a vital hormone made by the pancreas and released when needed. Insulin plays an important role in human metabolism by stimulating cells to take up glucose (blood sugar) from the blood. This causes the blood sugar level to drop. The cells need glucose for energy.
Insulin sensitivity shows how strongly or weakly the body reacts to insulin. A person with a high insulin sensitivity needs less insulin for the same physical reaction than a person with a low insulin sensitivity.
In some people, insulin resistance develops over time. Your body cells stop responding to the insulin, so the cells can no longer absorb the blood sugar. This so-called type 2 diabetes is one of the most common diseases of civilization. In addition to an inherited predisposition, the most important risk factor is an unhealthy lifestyle: overweight and lack of exercise contribute significantly to the development of type 2 diabetes.
Why coffee could still be useful for diabetes prevention
Although the study found no significant change in insulin sensitivity, the research team made another important discovery: Regular consumption of four cups of instant coffee per day led to moderate weight loss. Since obesity is an important risk factor for type 2 diabetes, coffee could at least contribute to prevention in this way. (kh)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
Magistra Artium (M.A.) Katja Helbig
- Khoo, Eric et al .: The effect of coffee consumption on insulin sensitivity and other biological risk factors for type 2 diabetes: a randomized placebo-controlled trial; in: The American journal of clinical nutrition, 2019, Oxford Academic