According to a new study published in Clinical Nutrition and funded by the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee, coffee drinking can help reduce the occurrence of type 2 diabetes (T2D) (ISIC). This is mediated by differences in inflammatory indicators in the body. The study investigated the underlying mechanisms by which coffee consumption may help to reduce T2D risk and discovered that lower subclinical inflammation may explain a portion of the link.
The study intended to investigate the underlying processes correlating increased coffee intake with a decreased risk of T2D3-9 by examining coffee’s influence on inflammation biomarkers like C-reactive protein (CRP), which increases when there is inflammation in the body.
Utilizing data from the UK Biobank (n=145,368) and the Rotterdam Study (n=7,111), researchers verified that increasing coffee consumption by one cup per day was related to a 4-6% decreased risk of T2D. It is also anticipated that cohort participants will have lower insulin resistance, lower CRP, lower leptin, and greater adiponectin concentrations. Adiponectin is a hormone that regulates glucose and lipid metabolism and has been proven to have anti-inflammatory and insulin-sensitizing properties, whereas leptin regulates food intake and energy balance.
Rather than a fixed baseline, a one-cup-per-day increase was tested against individuals’ variable daily intake. The research cohort’s daily coffee intake varied from 0 to 6 cups per day, with data indicating advantages from an additional cup per day regardless of whether participants fell at the lower or upper end of that range.
Research from the UK Biobank cohort also revealed that the way coffee is brewed may have an influence on its health benefits. Filtered or espresso coffee, along with not smoking, exhibited the highest favorable correlation with decreased T2D risk and CRP concentrations. Dr. Trudy Voortman, Ph.D., Associate Professor in Nutritional Epidemiology at Erasmus University Medical Centre Rotterdam, and Dr. Carolina Ochoa-Rosales, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Scientist at the same university, co-authored the study.
Dr. Voortman said, “Coffee is one of the most frequently consumed beverages worldwide and its potential health effects trigger significant scientific research. Previous studies have linked higher coffee consumption to a lower risk of developing T2D but underlying mechanisms remained unclear. Our research shows that coffee is associated with differences in the levels of inflammation biomarkers in the body, and as we know that T2D is partly an inflammatory disease, this could be one of the mechanisms at play. These findings could also support future research into the effects of coffee on other inflammation-related chronic diseases.”
The study adds to the current body of data linking coffee drinking to a decreased risk of T2D, which might aid in the creation of guidelines on how diet and lifestyle modifications can assist noncommunicable disease reduction efforts like T2D.