How Does Drinking Coffee Prevent Type II Diabetes?

We have known for many years that there is a relationship between drinking coffee and a reduction in the incidence of type II diabetes. In general, drinking coffee up to about six cups a day increasingly reduces your likelihood of getting this disease. However, all of the original studies were based on health questionnaires answered by large populations of men and women. There were no prospective studies in which people were assigned to levels of coffee intake and followed for years. And, there were no studies that helped us answer the question, how does drinking coffee prevent type II diabetes. A recent study provides more answers.

How Does Coffee Lower Type 2 Diabetes?

In a March 2021 issue of Nutrients the authors note that prospective epidemiological studies have repeatedly shown a relationship between steady coffee consumption and lower incidences of type 2 diabetes. Because this relationship holds up in studies of young, old, smokers, non-smokers, both sexes, and various regions of the world there appears to be a true cause-effect relationship.

How Does Drinking Coffee Prevent Type II Diabetes

Caffeine and Sugar Levels

Studies have not shown any consistent short term or long term effects on blood sugar levels or on the incidence of type 2 diabetes. In other words, non-coffee caffeine drinks do not have the effect of coffee on reducing the chances of developing type 2 diabetes.

Phytochemicals in Coffee Improve Blood Sugar Regulation

Phytochemicals are the antioxidant-rich constituents found in many nuts, fruits, vegetables, chocolate, and coffee. These chemicals have been shown to reduce oxidative reactions and thus deter various disease processes. Phytochemicals upregulate synthesis of enzymes responsible for cell repair and defense. In the case of phytochemicals in coffee, they preserve beta cell mass by improving function of mitochondria, reducing endoplasmic reticulum stress, and both preventing and disposing of amylin. The authors believe that the consequent long term preservation of beta cell function coupled with maintenance of good liver function is how routine coffee consumption reduces the incidence of type 2 diabetes.

Does Putting Sugar in Your Coffee Make a Difference in Getting Type II Diabetes?

One of the arguments made against drinking coffee with the hope of reducing your risk of type 2 diabetes has been that by adding sugar to your coffee you are negating whatever beneficial effects the coffee may have. The problem with this argument is that none of the population-based reviews considered whether sugar was added or not. Drinking coffee always had the effect of less type 2 diabetes. Secondly, none of the studies show any indication that short term effects of drinking coffee on blood sugar are related to the long term effect of less type 2 diabetes. Rather, the antioxidants in coffee seem to have a preventive and repair effect on both functions of the liver and pancreas (beta cells) which seems to be responsible for the long term benefit of drinking coffee on your likelihood of getting type 2 diabetes.

Do Other Caffeine Drinks Reduce the Incidence of Diabetes?

No, they do not. The benefit of coffee consumption in reducing the incidence of type 2 diabetes comes from the antioxidants in coffee, not the caffeine.

What Coffee Is Best for Preventing Diabetes?

Because the antioxidants in phytochemicals are what seem to help prevent type 2 diabetes, coffee beans with more active phytochemicals ought to be better for you than beans with less. Although antioxidants in coffee last a long time they do not last forever, thus relatively fresh, high quality Arabica coffee should be better for the purpose of preventing diabetes than lower-grade coffee of uncertain age. Your best source for excellent, fresh Arabica coffee is coffee from Colombia. For great Colombian coffee sent directly to you contact us at

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