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Jan 122012
 

From Green Right Now Reports

Heavy coffee drinkers may have their issues — they’re hyped up all morning; they get edgy and overly emphatic in meetings; they have problems sleeping (let’s not mention the frequent restroom breaks) and sometimes, like Will Farrell’s character in Kicking & Screaming, they simply lose it.

Coffee, it's good, no bad, no good for you.

But they don’t get Type 2 diabetes as often as their non-coffee drinking counterparts. In fact, studies show that people who drink four or more cups of coffee daily have about half the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes as the general population.

Given that outbreaks of irritability at coffee shops are a minor problem compared with the now worldwide epidemic of Type 2 diabetes, this phenomenon piqued the interest of researchers who wanted to find out why. Type 2 diabetes, after all, can lead to a constellation of health issues, if its not controlled, including nerve pain, high blood pressure and increased risk of heart attack and kidney damage.

The research team reports this week that they have identified the compounds in coffee that seem to deter development of Type 2 diabetes, which accounts for more than 90 percent of diabetes cases.

Their report, get ready for it, Coffee Components Inhibit Amyloid Formation of Human Islet Amyloid Polypeptide in Vitro: Possible Link between Coffee Consumption and Diabetes Mellitus, was published this week in the Journal of Agricultural & Food Chemistry.

The researchers of this study have found that two “categories” of substances in coffee inhibit the “misfolding” of a “human islet anyloid polypeptide,” or hIAPP, which has been identified as a causal factor in Type 2 diabetes.

In plain English, hIAPP is the bad actor behind the development of diabetes, but the compounds in coffee thwart its action.

Researchers Ling Zheng, Kun Huang and others in the team predict that even moderate coffee drinkers may realize some benefit, if this chain of biological action and counter-action proves out.

The study was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the National Basic Research Program of China and the Chinese Ministry of Education.