Researchers have found that cafestol - a bioactive compound present in coffee - increased insulin secretion, reduced fasting glucose levels, and improved insulin sensitivity in mice.
Drinking coffee may help to prevent the development of type 2 diabetes, say researchers.


Your morning coffee could help to stave off type 2 diabetes, a recent research reveals, but it's not down to the caffeine content.


This is really very good news for the coffee lovers, who drinks three or four cups of coffee everyday.

Researcher shave found that cafestol - a bio-active compound present in coffee - increased insulin secretion, reduced fasting glucose levels, and improved insulin sensitivity in mice.

Study co-author Fredrik Brustad Mellbye, of the Department of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine at Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark, and colleagues recently reported their results in the Journal of Natural Products.

Type2 diabetes arises when the body is no longer able to produce enough insulin or use the hormone effectively. As a result, blood glucose levels may become too high.


A woman is drinking coffee


About 30.3 million people in the United States have diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes, accounting for around 90 to 95 percent of all cases.

The past study has shown that drinking coffee may help to lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. While some studies have attributed this association to the effects of caffeine - the well-known stimulant in coffee - other research has suggested that alternative substances in the beverage might be at play.

The new study from Mellbye and colleagues supports the latter theory, after finding that the coffee compound cafestol improved markers of type 2 diabetes in mouse models.


Chemical structure of cafestol


How Cafestol work as antidiabetic drug?

For their research work, the scientist team assessed three groups of mice, all of which were at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Moreover, two of the mice groups received different dosages of the compound and the third was not given anything.

Fora total of 10 weeks, one group was fed a daily dose of 1.1 milligrams of cafestol, one group was fed 0.4 milligrams of cafestol daily, while the third group did not receive the compound (the controls).

At the end of week 10, the researchers found that both groups that were fed cafestol experienced a 28 to 30 percent reduction in blood glucose levels, compared with the control group.

Again,the mice group that fed the higher dose of cafestol showed a 42 percent improvement in insulin sensitivity, compared with the control group, as well as a 20 percent reduction in fasting glucagon, which is the hormone that increases blood glucose levels.


Cafestol work as antidiabetic


The researcher’s isolated islets of Langerhans after the 10-week study period from each group of mice which are pancreatic cells that normally produce insulin.

The researchers found that the islets isolated from mice fed cafestol demonstrated a 75 to 87 percent increase in insulin production, compared with islets isolated from the control group.

As stated by Mellbye and colleagues, their findings show that "cafestol possesses anti-diabetic properties" in mice at high risk for the disease.

"Consequently,cafestol may contribute to the reduced risk of developing T2D [type 2 diabetes]in coffee consumers and has a potential role as an anti diabetic drug."

Bottom line

The researchers investigated different coffee compounds’ effects on cells in the lab. Cafestol and caffeic acid both increased insulin secretion when glucose was added. The team also found that cafestol increased glucose uptake in muscle cells,matching the levels of a currently prescribed antidiabetic drug. They say cafestol’s dual benefits make it a good candidate for the prevention and treatment of type 2 diabetes. However, because coffee filters eliminate much of the cafestol in drip coffee, it is likely that other compounds also contribute to these health benefits.


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