Diabetes is a very common disease affecting children and adults around the world, yet there are still many mysteries and debates about diabetic treatments. For example, the jury is still out on the correlation between caffeine and diabetes.
In Japan, researchers have claimed that those who take caffeine in the form of coffee or green tea may reduce the risk of diabetes. Medical experts, on the other hand, now claim that caffeine can pose a higher risk for diabetes. A study conducted on participants aged 40 to 65 who drank black, green and oolong teas showed that drinking at least three or more cups of these caffeinated beverages each day could result in a 33 percent reduction in their risk of diabetes. Other substances in coffee, however, can have negative effects on the body’s metabolism, creating other health problems. Modern research suggests that it’s advisable to avoid caffeine in order to reduce the risk of diabetes.
Research conducted at a respected university medical centre suggested that drinking caffeine with meals would result in an increase in insulin and glucose levels in participants with Type 2 diabetes. Insulin is a naturally-occurring component in the body that converts glucose into energy. A person with diabetes who drinks caffeine with a meal may suffer from a hindered metabolism. Participants who fasted during the study showed no significant changes in their insulin or glucose levels.
Keeping blood glucose levels down in the goal of all diabetics. Smart lifestyle choices, like a healthy diet combined with exercise, are important to controlling these glucose levels. As a result of the recent medical research, it may also be necessary to eliminate caffeine from your diet.
Diabetes prevents the body from controlling sugar levels in the blood. For many patients, the body does not produce sufficient insulin. Other patients suffer with a hormone that resists insulin. The caffeine in coffee and tea has been shown to have a direct negative effect on insulin levels. There is another way that caffeine can pose a risk to diabetics.
Alloxan is a chemical that poisons the cells that produce insulin. Laboratory tests have shown that when mice were fed with alloxan, they developed diabetes. The cells that produce insulin were destroyed by the alloxan, resulting in the conditions for diabetes. Caffeine causes the body to produce alloxan naturally. Theoretically, caffeine consumption can lead to the production of alloxan, which in turn can cause diabetes or make the condition worse. Aside from poisoning our insulin-creating cells, alloxan is a free radical generator that causes aging and disease. Alloxan directly damages the pancreas, and may cause pancreatic cancer.
Caffeine is a contributor to many diseases but unfortunately our society thrives on it. Caffeine is found in coffee, tea, soft drinks and chocolate, so those who drink several cups of coffee or several soft drinks a day are taking in massive doses of deadly alloxan on a daily basis. Even decaffeinated products will still contain a certain amount of caffeine. Everyone should limit caffeine intake, particularly people with diabetes.
Caffeine intake used to be a health issue reserved for older patients. Now, younger people are facing the same dangers. The soft drink industry is, sadly, marketing “power drinks” with dangerously high levels of caffeine to consumers in the age 15-21 demographic. Some juices and even bottled waters are infused with caffeine, and even respected tea manufacturers are producing “high-powered” teas that are packed with caffeine.
If you have diabetes, or are concerned with preventing the disease, you need to know that there is a definite link between caffeine and diabetes. Talk to your doctor, and take steps to reduce your caffeine intake. Better yet, eliminate caffeine from your diet altogether.