One More Reason to Drink Coffee

Researchers say they’ve found out how and why drinking a cup of joe reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

A new study says that certain coffee components can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Photograph courtesy of Flickr user Madame Tussauds.

Hey, Paula Deen, listen up! Drinking coffee may help prevent type 2 diabetes. A cup of joe has long been associated with reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and now researchers say they’ve found out exactly why it helps.

In a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, researchers say that three major components found in coffee—caffeine, caffeic acid, and chlorogenic acid—help keep type 2 diabetes at bay. Each ingredient inhibits the misfolding of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP), which is thought to be a causing factor of type 2 diabetes and is found in the pancreas. When hIAPP folds, it can develop amyloid protein deposits, which are typically found in patients with type 2.

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Researchers found that caffeic acid proved most effective in blocking the formation of these amyloid deposits. Chlorogenic acid and caffeine also proved inhibitory, although they were less effective, respectively.

That said, decaffeinated coffee may be more effective in preventing type 2 diabetes than caffeinated coffee. Decaf coffee contains higher levels of caffeic acid and chlorogenic acid, the researchers told HealthDay.

While the results from the study are promising, exercise and healthy eating remain the best forms of treatment for type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease. Also, the study focused solely on coffee without any cream or sugar, which are not exactly type 2–friendly foods.