Coffee, Chocolate, and Type 2 Diabetes
Nature gifted humans with two especially flavorful beans: chocolate and coffee. Beyond pleasure, new studies are finding that both of these magic beans can help prevent diabetes.
Danish researchers recently found that cafestol a compound in coffee increased insulin secretion, reduced fasting glucose levels, and improved insulin sensitivity in mice. Previous studies have shown coffee helps with diabetes, but most researchers thought the benefit came from the caffeine.
This study points out that there are over 1,000 other chemicals in coffee, and cafestol may be one of the most valuable ones. It may explain why both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee often bring down blood sugar levels. (Not always though: In some coffee studies, glucose has been found to run higher, but this may well have been due to the cream and sweeteners people added to their coffee.)
The mice were fed cafestol for ten weeks. Control mice were not given cafestol. Groups fed cafestol experienced a 28% to 30% reduction in blood glucose levels, compared with the control group.
Mice fed cafestol had a 42% increase in insulin sensitivity, the opposite of insulin resistance. Their beta cells showed a 75% to 87% increase in insulin production.
Another study by the Danish researchers found that cafestol and caffeic acid, another chemical in coffee, increased insulin production in the presence of glucose. This is exactly what the class of drugs known as GLP-1 receptor agonists (incretins) do.
Cafestol was also found to increase glucose uptake into muscle cells at a similar rate to current diabetes dru Continue reading