Scientists identify health benefits of cafestol in coffee

Posted: 16 December 2015 | | 4 comments

Scientists have identified two compounds in coffee – cafestol and caffeic acid – that could someday lead to the development of new medications to better prevent and treat type 2 diabetes…

Drinking three to four cups of coffee per day has been shown to decrease the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Now, scientists report they have identified two compounds that contribute to this health benefit. Researchers say that this knowledge could someday help them develop new medications to better prevent and treat the disease.

Patients with type 2 diabetes become resistant to insulin, a hormone that helps turn glucose from food into energy. To overcome this resistance, the pancreas makes more insulin, but eventually, it just can’t make enough. High blood glucose levels can cause health problems, such as blindness and nerve damage.

Coffee’s cafestol has dual benefits

Several genetic and life style risk factors have been linked to the development of type 2 diabetes, but drinking coffee has been shown to help prevent its onset. Caffeine was thought to be responsible, but studies have shown it has only a short-term effect on glucose and insulin, and decaffeinated coffee has the same effect as the regular version of the drink. To investigate which of coffee’s many bioactive components are responsible for diabetes prevention, Søren Gregersen and colleagues tested the effects of different coffee substances in rat cell lines.

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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4 responses to “Scientists identify health benefits of cafestol in coffee”

  1. a.j. says:

    Negligible I dont know. Indeed in the first article you reference is mentioned that 5 cups per day (35 cups a week indeed) increases cholesterol with 6 to 8 percent. You say that is on the low end of potentially affecting your cholesterol. And indeed 6 to 8 percent doesnt seem to be a lot. But in this article is cited that “cafestol is the most potent dietary cholesterol-elevating agent known”. I read that as not a lot of foods will raise it more than cafestol. And since ldl cholesterol is causing a lot of problems I wouldn’t take much of a food that increases it the most of all.

  2. CAWS says:

    This is not a good idea. Cafestrol is well known to interfere with the liver’s metabolism of cholesterol especially in Aribica coffee prepared by the French press method or Scandinavian boiled. Paper filters take out most of it but it will still raise cholesterol in women regardless. So keep using coffee to prevent diabetes & you will be put on Lipitor for high cholesterol & then you will get diabetes from the Lipitor. Sounds like a way to sell more drugs to me!

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