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Drink more coffee to reduce your diabetes risk

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Two new pointers this week for people worried about type 2 diabetes: drinking more coffee reduces your risk of ever getting this lifestyle disease, while grape seed extract supplements could be a natural way to treat it.

People who increase the amount of coffee they drink can reduce their risk of getting diabetes. Drinking an extra one-and-a-half cups every day-which is around 360ml-for four years reduces the risk by 11 per cent. However, people who go the other way and cut down on their coffee drinking by one cup a day increase their chances of diabetes by 17 per cent.

Drinking three or more cups of coffee a day had the greatest protective effect. People who drank this amount were 37 per cent less likely to develop diabetes than someone who drank one cup or less a day.

Researchers from Harvard Medical School discovered coffee-s protective effects after they analysed the lifestyles and diets of more than 120,000 men and women.

But what can you do if you develop diabetes? Researchers from Wayne State University have discovered that grape seed extract supplements inhibits hyperglycemia (high blood sugar), a typical characteristic of diabetes. With diabetes, the body doesn’t produce enough insulin, a hormone that helps the body manage sugar levels, especially after eating.

The researchers said the supplements help the body cope with high sugar levels, and they have won a research grant to take their work to the next level, which may involve trials on people.

(Sources: Coffee study: Diabetologia, April 2014; doi: 10.1007/s00125-014-3235-7; grape seed extract: Wayne State University division of research)

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