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Caffeine vs Type II Diabetes 445

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the morning-pot-of-joe dept.
OctaneZ writes "New research out of the Harvard School of Public Health indicates that coffee may lower your risk of Type II Diabetes. Men who drank 6 cups of coffee a day lowered their risk by 50%, while womens risk dropped 30%. The release also includes audio discussions about the suprising findings."
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Caffeine vs Type II Diabetes

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  • Great news! (Score:5, Funny)

    by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @10:55AM (#7890904) Homepage Journal

    That's super news!

    Being that there's coffee in Kahlua [kahlua.com] I can rest assured that when I have cirrhosis induced jaundice I won't have to suffer through the ravages of Type II diabetes!

    oh.. there are only 2 Fs in "Caffeine", Taco. Please get it right when you dupe the story in 2 hours.
  • Slashdot reaction (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @10:56AM (#7890913)
    "Yay, my lame-ass caffeine 'addiction', that I brag about and wear like a badge of sorry dorkiness, is actually helping my fat-ass sedentary lifestyle!!@"

    Ignoring, of course, the fact that while drinking 6 (!!) cups of coffee a day may reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes (if this resarch is true), it raises your risk for nearly everything else.
    • Exactly. Dying of a heart attack renders you immune to any further diseases. In fact studies shows that dead people are 100% less likely to contract cancer, aids and diabetes.
    • I drink six cups of coffee before before I'm finished watching the morning news. What I want to know is: Am I avoiding more problems than I'm creating by drinking six pots of coffee per day?
    • by Carewolf (581105) *
      Actually drinking moderate amounts of coffee is know to be benificial to most functions of the body, even resistence to diseases.

      The magic point with coffee is around 6 cups a day, where the bad effects starts to kick in (increased risk of ulcers and heart-problems).

      We can just hope the risk for diabetes is also reduced for less than 6 cups a day, otherwise we have to count cups to make sure the hit the magic number every single day ;)
    • coffee is very safe (Score:5, Interesting)

      by sbma44 (694130) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @12:00PM (#7891672)
      caffeine is pretty safe. It can aggravate a number of other conditions (ulcers, hypertension, etc) but its role in causing these conditions isn't clear. A lot of people assume it is -- the same way some people without hypertension avoid sodium. There may be some causality there, but if there is, it's a lot weaker than most people assume.

      Interestingly, caffeine also seems to have a neuroprotective effect when it comes to Parkinson's (here's [washington.edu] an article even the most java-addled ./er should be able to get through).

      Also interesting: nicotine has an even stronger neuroprotective effect against Parkinson's. And what's really weird: smokers metabolize caffeine about twice as fast as nonsmokers (nobody's really sure why). Next time your pretentious smoker buddy starts bragging about how much coffee he cranks, you might mention this. He's got a biochemical advantage.

      I don't smoke, and I wouldn't advise doing it as part of your health regimen, but nicotine's interations with caffeine are kind of intriguing.

  • meanwhile.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by bsDaemon (87307) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @10:57AM (#7890920)
    men's risk of heart-attack raised 70% and woman's height decreased 25%
  • I'll drink to that!

    One small shot of espresso for man,
    One 5-shot Venti White Chocolate Mocha for mankind!

    Waiter! I'll have two please!

    -Goran
    • One small shot of espresso for man,

      One 5-shot Venti White Chocolate Mocha for mankind!

      My personal favorite is the "quint expresso machiatto". I know that in the Pacific Northwest barrista is considered a profession, but everywhere else it is considered a slight step up from "Do you want fries with that?" Most have to ask "Quint? How many is that?"

      Also, I always order an odd number, so that the person making the drink will have an extra shot of expresso left over, and perhaps offer it to me for free

  • Sugar consumption (Score:5, Insightful)

    by truthsearch (249536) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @10:58AM (#7890930) Homepage Journal
    I wonder if it's because those who drank a lot of coffee throughout the day consumed less refined sugar. Many put some sugar in their coffee, but if they're getting a boost in energy from the coffee maybe they lay off the snacks.
    • I wonder if it's because those who drank a lot of coffee throughout the day consumed less refined sugar.

      Hey, not all of us snack with junk food, nor are all of us hooked on sugary soft drinks!

      Some of us even drink water. Try it for a week. You won't look at a syrypy soft drink the same way, once you get your taste buds back.

    • Usually the point of doing studies like this is to eliminate independent variables like that. I'm sure that in addition to questions like "How much coffee do you drink in a day?", there were questions like "What is your average daily sugar consumption?" and "How many soft drinks do you drink in a day?"

      Most of the time, the hardest part in conducting any experiment is identifying and eliminating all the independent variables (except for the one you're trying to test, of course). In the case of Diabetes, sug
    • Re:Sugar consumption (Score:2, Informative)

      by benzapp (464105)
      Type II diabetes is not caused by "refined sugar" it is caused by excess consumption of food in general, irrespective of the source. All food is broken down into glucose, even fat. That glucose then exists in your blood stream where it is used, and excess glucose is stored as fat. This is the function of insulin, it is the opposite of adrenalin. Rather that convert stored fat to energy, it does the opposite.

      The problem is there is a finite amount of insulin that can be produced, and it appears that with ex
      • Re:Sugar consumption (Score:5, Informative)

        by phiala (680649) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @12:21PM (#7891964)
        What is known is it is impossible to acquire Type II diabetes if you have less than 5% body fat. A person of normal weight has zero chance of acquiring the disorder.

        Less than 5%?? If you are female, you would have so many other health problems to worry about at that point that not getting diabetes wouldn't do you much good!

        Even for males, that's so low as to be almost unachievable...

        To be healthy, a woman _needs_ at least 10% body fat, and men at least 5%, and to get that low you need to be working really, really hard. Ideal percentages body fat for _athletes_ run more like 12-18% female / 6-15% male.

        Even if you ignore the 5% figure, a person of normal weight has a low but not non-zero chance of developing type ii diabetes.

      • Re:Sugar consumption (Score:4, Informative)

        by Temkin (112574) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @12:26PM (#7892029)


        You're taking the "blame the patient" position. It's been debunked.

        One notable characteristic of type II diabetes is the loss of the post meal insulin pulse. This pulse of insulin keeps blood glucose in check immediately after a meal. Without it, your blood glucose rises sharply after a meal and then falls. Swinging blood sugar levels lead to sugar & carbohydrate cravings. You can have these, and not be fat. The disease can actually induce the vice. Cause and effect are not always what they seem. You might find my other posts in this topic interesting.

  • Hmm... (Score:2, Funny)

    by DarkHand (608301)
    But caffeine also seems to make you jjjittery and ttype lettters multiple timess.
  • coffee not caffine (Score:2, Informative)

    by veggiespam (5283)
    it was the coffee, not the caffeine, that provided the benefits. decafe works too.
  • Just a joke. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by secondsun (195377) <secondsun@gmail.com> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @10:58AM (#7890939) Journal
    The statistics were probably skewed from their hearts exploding after beating like a hummingbird on meth.

    Really, what is the raiton between the risk of cardio injury from drinking this much coffee and the risk of getting diabetes in general? I would htink that cardiovascular disease would be a bigger threat than diabetes. (If I had to pick I would rather go with the cardiovascular disease but neither are nice)

    And was the regular coffee or my double brewed boiled down recipie where I fit two pots into one cup?
    • Six cups of coffee isn't a lot. Think about it - most people sleep about 8 hours, so that gives 18 hours, and a cup of coffee every three hours.

      I drink about twice that, and I have a very low heart rate and blood pressure. OTOH I am generally fairly fit anyway, maybe that makes a difference.
      • I drink about twice that, and I have a very low heart rate and blood pressure.

        The question is though, if you drank less coffee, would you have a lower heart rate and lower blood pressure?

        Fitness (aerobic capacity IIRC) has the result in lowering your resting heart rate, not sure about bp though.

      • Re:Just a joke. (Score:4, Interesting)

        by glesga_kiss (596639) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:27AM (#7891265)
        Six cups of coffee isn't a lot. Think about it - most people sleep about 8 hours, so that gives 18 hours, and a cup of coffee every three hours.

        You know; that's exactly what a lot of other junkies do to rational their habit. I do it with cigarettes.

        Caffine is addictive. You are dependant on it. You are a drug addict.

        (ps can you leave all us smokers alone now...?) ;-)

        • Re:Just a joke. (Score:3, Informative)

          by benzapp (464105)
          You are addicted to air but no one is complaining.

          The difference is coffee has no conclusive health risks, whereas cigarettes have many definite health risks.

          Addiction in and of itself only matters when the addiction can become a problem in and of itself. Not drinking coffee one day will not result in your completely losing your mind and screaming for hours on end like heroin withdrawal can. In fact, it won't even make you as obtuse as nicotine withdrawal.

    • Re:Just a joke. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by BillFarber (641417)
      I would htink that cardiovascular disease would be a bigger threat than diabetes.

      Actually, diabetes is one of the major causes of heart disease.

    • Re:Just a joke. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by hey! (33014) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:40AM (#7891382) Homepage Journal
      The statistics were probably skewed from their hearts exploding after beating like a hummingbird on meth.

      I don't know about that. I don't think there's ever been any evidence of serious long term health consequences linked to even moderately high caffeine use.

      And it's not for lack of trying. Caffeine seems almost too good to be true.

      As far as the lameness of caffeine addiction is concerned, coffee has been loved by generations of Sufis, who used coffee in mystic rituals and spread its use across the world; and by many important creative people who picked it up in coffee houses. Beethoven and Rossini were very heavy users by any standard. William Harvey, the disoverer of blood ciruclation, left his coffee paraphernalia to the Royal Society and is said to have declared on his deathbed that the coffee bean was the source of all true happiness (going a bit far I'd say).

      Balzac was probably the champion coffee addict of all time, reaching a point of drinking over two hundred cups of coffee a day until he finally gave up and resorted to eating coffee beans directly. He did die of heart failure, but at a reasonable age for his day, and according to his physician from a congential condition.

      Coffee is one of those rare pleasures that, even indulged in to the extreme remains quite benign. I'd say stop being so puritanical and enjoy one of nature's gifts.
  • Yeah, but... (Score:3, Informative)

    by NevDull (170554) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @10:59AM (#7890947) Homepage Journal
    6 cups of coffee per day? Could it be because they're rail thin, twitchy freaks who burn off all their excess calories by fidgeting constantly?

    Insulin resistance seems to be correlated with obesity. I'm not saying you can't be fat and drink coffee... but most of the "looks like a crack addict with his coffee fix" people I know are thin.
    • Re:Yeah, but... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mcrbids (148650)
      Insulin resistance seems to be correlated with obesity. I'm not saying you can't be fat and drink coffee... but most of the "looks like a crack addict with his coffee fix" people I know are thin.

      How right you are!

      I am constantly dealing with Type II diabetes. (Ironically, I'm also a modest coffee drinker averaging ~ 30 oz / day)

      I've found that when my weight climbs above 225, I have problems with my blood sugars. When my weight is under 220 or so, I have little to no trouble at all.

      This is not an issue
  • by mshiltonj (220311) <{mshiltonj} {at} {gmail.com}> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @10:59AM (#7890950) Homepage Journal
    Men who drank 6 cups of coffee a day lowered their risk by 50%

    I drink so much coffee, the people around me must have a lowered risk of diabetes, just by proximity.
    • by Asprin (545477)

      Feh- You guys are still measuring intake in CUPS?!

      What a bunch of sissy posers!

      Anything less than six *POTS* of coffee a day is social drinkin'.
      • If you measure your coffee in pots, you aren't drinking real coffee. Two real expressos in a row, and I'm jumping around like a jackhammer. After a pot of coffee I could die and my heart would continue beating on its own.
  • Diet Soda? (Score:3, Informative)

    by neiffer (698776) * on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:00AM (#7890957) Homepage
    Of course, this is not a formal medical observation AT ALL but I am type II diabetic and I am also a fan of the Dr. Atkins diet (you know, eat a side of beef every day...LOSE WEIGHT!). Adkins doesn't like caffine and I went on it first and skipped my 10-soda-a-day-habit. (Diet, of course.) I went off of it and back on with soda (more moderate, but still a lot) and still lost weight and my diabetes numbers improved even more than they were. I have to wonder now reading the new research.
    • Re:Diet Soda? -OT- (Score:5, Insightful)

      by happyfrogcow (708359) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:28AM (#7891282)
      Atkins diet. Jeebus H. Christ. I swear if i hear that phrase one more time I'm going to lose it. It's everywhere. Menu's at resturaunts have "Atkins Friendly" sections now.

      Whatever ever happened to a balanced diet? Atkins seems to me to be swinging the pendulum more and more away from equilibrium.

      Pop culture diets: "Eat no carbs!" "Wait! You need carbs!" "Eat nothing but carbs!" "Wait, carbs are bad!" "Eat only protien!" "Eat anything but barf it up!"

      rant not directed towards you, neiffer. just a rant. whatever to get your diabetes in control. People with a medical condition, maybe something like Atkins is a good thing. but for people who think they are fat, and don't want to excercise, a little more balance would seem better.
      • Re:Diet Soda? -OT- (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Temkin (112574) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:43AM (#7891410)


        Make fun of Atkins all you like, but for those of us that have type II diabetes, it's a powerful tool to control our blood sugar. I've lost enough weight on Atkins that my sugar readings are "normal" as long as I stick to the diet. If I eat more than about 20 grams of carbs at one sitting, or about 45 - 50 grams a day, my blood sugar goes way up. Studies have shown that good sugar control postpones and reduces the onset of diabetic complications. Basicly, the carbs kill diabetics faster than the fat & cholesterol.

        Many people mistake Atkins induction level with the "atkins diet". Induction is a 2 week phase. It is not a balanced diet, and you're not supposed to stay on it forever. Atkins at maintenance levels resembles The Zone diet.

      • Re:Diet Soda? -OT- (Score:5, Informative)

        by RevMike (632002) <revMike AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:53AM (#7891571) Journal
        Whatever ever happened to a balanced diet? Atkins seems to me to be swinging the pendulum more and more away from equilibrium.

        There actually is a pretty good rationale for low carb dieting. I'll try to sum up two major lines of evidence:

        First, carbs didn't make up a large part of the human diet until the invention of agriculture about 10,000 years ago. Sugars and starchs are simply not available in large consistenet quantities to hunter/gatherers dominant for the previous 90,000 years. Studies comparing the remains of pre-agricultural people and agricultural people show that diabetes and heart disease only appear in populations once agriculture is introduced. The correlation was shown not to be an effect of lifespan. today, cultures such as the Inuit exist on nearly carb free diets and show a similar absence of diabetes and heart disease.

        Second, carbs are nearly instantaneously converted to glucose by the digestive system. Where the digestive system easily discards unneeded fat and protein, glucose enters the blood stream very quickly. Excessively high glucose levels are toxic to the brain, so glucose triggers an insulin response. Insulin triggers the fat cells to remove glucose and store it, and it triggers the liver to remove glucose and store it as cholesterol. By removing the carb component of the diet, the body needs to produce its own glucose. The glycogen response triggers the fat cells to release stored glucose into the blood stream and it triggers the liver to convert cholesterol to glucose. Low carb dieting causes the body to spend most time in a glycogenic state, which means the body is burning fat and cholesterol as fuel. Hence, less fat and cholesterol.

      • Re:Diet Soda? -OT- (Score:4, Informative)

        by neiffer (698776) * on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:58AM (#7891641) Homepage
        Well, to be honest, the concept of the "balanced diet" in modern nutrition is over-focused on carbs. If you read the full Adkins diet, the point of it is to eventually balanced the number of carbs in our diets, but at dramatically lower levels than the traditional Western diet, which is overdominated with carbs.
      • Re:Diet Soda? -OT- (Score:5, Interesting)

        by benzapp (464105) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @12:04PM (#7891710)
        After 30 years of messing with people's diets, the average citizen is now keenly aware that the medical establishment doesn't know jack shit about what they should eat. People will try anything now.

        There is some truth to the Atkins diet, but its now some sick industry. People should just go back to eating the way we did 50 years ago. Just watch a 50's TV show sometime. Get some Depression era photographs. People LOOKED healthy back then. It is very clear.

        Remember, the same bureaucrats who created dietary guidelines also revolutionized the educational system and thought housing projects would eliminate poverty. The sad fact is diet fads are one of the last idealistic trends of the 1960's. Like everything else of that era, it was wrong and destructive.
  • More Details! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Dark Paladin (116525) * <jhummelNO@SPAMjohnhummel.net> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:00AM (#7890961) Homepage
    Does drinking 6 cups of coffee a day reduce Type II diabetes

    OR

    Does drinking 6 cups of coffee a day supress hunger so people eat less, and therefore weigh less, which reduces the chance of Type II diabetes?

    In my head, it's more the latter than any "wonder of coffee" - kind of like how a few years ago it was "red wine reduces heart attacks! Drink up, kids!", which then moved to "oh, well, grape juice does the same thing - it's all because of the antioxidants".

    • Does drinking 6 cups of coffee a day supress hunger so people eat less, and therefore weigh less, which reduces the chance of Type II diabetes?

      Coffe doesn't suppress hunger, it increases your matabolism so reasonably it should do the reverse.

      /August.

    • RTFPR! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by YeOldeGnurd (14524)
      Read the press release before complaining about a lack of details. The difference could not be explained by diet or exercise. This is one of many findings from the biggest darn health study I've ever heard of (and my wife is an epidemiologist, so I hear about every health study there is).

      The Harvard researchers have been following well over 100,000 health professionals for many years now. The participants provide the researchers with detailed reports on weight, fitness level, lifestyle, exercise, diet, an

  • ...but what other health factors might 6 cups of coffee per day have, besides brown teeth?

    I don't think it's wise to increase coffee intake just for the reduced diabetes risk. Besides, there's other healthier things one can do to reduce the risk, like (heaven forbid) better diet and exercise habits.

  • by huhmz (216967)
    Cafffeine eh? The editor has had a few to many cups of cofffee me thinks
  • by shystershep (643874) * <bdshepherd@NOSpaM.gmail.com> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:01AM (#7890979) Homepage Journal
    Here's another (older) article [msn.com] about some of the health benefits which debunks some caffeine-related health concerns. I looked, but could not find, an article from several years ago that I know I read (not just wishful thinking - really) regarding a study of coffee drinkers and sexuality which found that men that were regular coffee drinkers continued to be sexually active later in life than their non-coffee-drinking counterparts.

    So, it's good for you! Drink up!

  • I always find these studies funny. The actual reason is that most of them are dead from caffene poisioning before they get diabetes.
  • I believe it. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by NetJunkie (56134) <jason.nash@gm a i l.com> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:01AM (#7890982)
    I am hypoglycemic and one thing that really straightens out my blood sugar/insulin is caffeine. When drinking coffee it's a lot more stable and doesn't fluctuate nearly as bad.

  • parkinson too (Score:5, Interesting)

    by G3ckoG33k (647276) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:01AM (#7890984)
    Some claim [washington.edu] caffeine helps for Parkinsons disease too

  • Nuts!!! (Score:5, Funny)

    by moehoward (668736) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:02AM (#7890990)
    I seem to recall a slashdot story from about a year ago that claimed that drinking so much caffeine caused your testicles to shrink.

    Aren't there other, more healthy ways to lower your risk of diabetes? Like exercise and eating right? Or is that one of those "things you are not allowed to say" on slashdot?
  • Coffee will reduce it IF you dont have 6 pounds of sugar, choclate syrup and other carbohydrates in it.

    black coffee is the best, but reducing your carbohydrate intake along with it makes the biggest difference.
  • by tuxette (731067) * <tuxette@gmail . c om> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:04AM (#7891021) Homepage Journal
    ...is going to be one of the "hot" health topics this year. I've seen several reports like the Harvard one, and I've seen several reports saying coffee/caffeine promotes insulin resistance which leads to diabetes type 2. I've also seen reports saying regular coffee helps, but not decaf or tea. And of course reports saying tea is THE thing. At this point, it's too early to say who's right and who's wrong.

    One thing to note is that a lot of the reports I read saying that coffee leads to diabetes type 2 also imply that the coffee is consumed together with some kind of carbohydrate-laced food, usually cakes or something. It is also equally important to note that there are a large number of athletes and serious exercisers who use coffee as a performance enhancer; they tend to not have diabetes type 2 and they tend not to consume their coffee with performance-undermining cakes.

    What I would like to see are more reports taking these factors into account.Compare people who drink just coffee with people who drink coffee and eat cake. Compare people who drink coffee and exercise vigorously on a regular basis with people who drink coffee and sit on the couch all day. Let's get rid of all the double-messages and ambiguities.

  • Why haven't they referred to this as the "Geek Effect?" Men who drink more than 6 cups of coffee a day are at LEAST 50% likely to be geeks of some form, and women about 30%. Coincidenza?
  • by plinius (714075) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:06AM (#7891047)
    Caffeine has numerous side effects that are negative; the degree to which each effect troubles any one individual varies. These are what researchers have found in the lab.

    Side effects of caffeine include:

    • rapid heartbeat
    • shortness of breath
    • dehydration
    • increased urination
    • inability to remain attentive
    • forgetfulness
    • headaches
    • sleepiness
    • anger
    • stress, burning sensatiion

    Anger is perhaps the symptom I've seen the most in other people. It's due to the fact that caffeine causes the adrenal glands to dump their load--you feel energized by caffeine specifically because you've gotten an adrenaline rush. But andrenaline also causes anger because it brings on the "fight or flight" syndrome. Therefore one of the worst places to work is in a place with lots of caffine addicts--they tend to get on each others' nerves.

    Caffine causes other stress hormones to be released. The net effect is that you end up feeling tired because you've been feeling stressed out by caffeine. Most people end up taking caffeine to deal with caffeine's side effects.

    It takes two weeks for caffeine to completely leave your body.

    • Well, it looks bad when you use words like "researchers" and "Side effects". But the fact of the matter is that just about everything will either kill or harm you if you take a high enough dose of it.

      Coffe(my source of caffine) is no worse than salt, steak, snickers, mcdonald's burgers and so on. It is all about eating and drinking sensible - coffe is no exception.
    • by RevMike (632002) <revMike AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @12:00PM (#7891655) Journal

      Caffeine has numerous side effects that are negative; the degree to which each effect troubles any one individual varies. These are what researchers have found in the lab.

      Side effects of caffeine include: ... anger ...

      Anger is perhaps the symptom I've seen the most in other people.

      Who the hell do you think you are complaining that we coffee drinkers are angry! Why don't you get off your FSCKING high horse, you god-damned pissant. You can take your whiney little opinions about angry coffee drinkes and stick them where the sun doesn't shine! Bloody health food eating, toad sucking, argument for post-natal abortion.

    • statistics abuse (Score:3, Interesting)

      by obtuse (79208)
      The half-life of caffeine is around four hours. That's a more useful metric than "It takes two weeks for caffeine to completely leave your body."

      Sure the named side effects have been observed, in some individuals, at certain dosages.

      >stress, burning sensatiion

      What does that mean?
      "I'm too tense, and I'm on fire!"

      Just by combining those two items you demonstrate you aren't actually thinking about this.

      You forgot to mention that performance on IQ tests is enhanced in most people by caffeine.

      Aside from
  • I'd have trouble contracting diabetes too, if my HEAD EXPLODED FROM TOO MUCH COFFEE.
  • I have a blazing headache because I'm trying to cut down on my coffee drinking after reading the recent article [slashdot.org]!
  • "This is good news for coffee drinkers, however it doesn't mean everyone should run out for a latte," said Frank Hu, senior author of the study ...

    Yeah; that milk is bad for ya; stick to the straight coffee and you'll be fine.

    Seriously; I read the report looking for clues that for the usual sorts of problems. Did they have cause and effect straightened out? Did they really show it was related to the caffeine? Could you get the same effect by drinking (warm) water?

    They did mention decaf having a lesse
  • The study just compared caffeinated coffee drinkers to non-coffee drinkers. Maybe those non-coffee drinkers were drinking 12-paks of Mountain Dew. Jumping to conclusions is bad science.
  • "... Men who drank 6 cups of coffee a day lowered their risk by 50% ..."

    Since I drink a few pots a day + pepsi that means I have somewhere around -200% risk and my blood may be used to treat Diabetes no?
  • is that Coffee appears to lower your risk for Type II Diabetes....not caffine. They explicitly say that it may be the antioxidents in coffee that are responsible. So, put down the Mountain Dew.
  • I am Cornholio! I need tp for my bunghole! Bung-bung-bunghole. Hehehehehehe. Bunghole! Bunghole! Bunghole!
  • Men who drank 6 cups of coffee a day lowered their risk by 50%, while womens risk dropped 30%.

    6 cups a day?! If the test-subjects die from a heart-attack before diabetes can get them, does that really mean their risk has been lowered?
  • Hmm... (Score:2, Funny)

    by Mmm coffee (679570)
    So what about those of us that dump tons of sugar in their coffee? Would that negate the whole thing?

    C'mon, I can't be the only one here who has been asked if they want some coffee with their sugar and cream. ;)
  • Maybe the reason people who drink 6 cups of coffee have a lower T2 Diabetes risk is because after having that much freaking caffiene they can't hold still.

    Seriously. 6 cups? Some people I know would have to run the Los Angeles Marathon to work off those jitters.
    • Dude, if you are not hallucinating by 11AM, then it is time for another cup of coffee. BTW, I am talking strong-as-shit-highly-caffeinated light roast American coffee. None of that "tastes strong" shit from Europe.
  • by Hoi Polloi (522990) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:24AM (#7891233) Journal
    I'll tell you why coffee helps prevent diabetes and maybe with weight loss, after 6 cups of coffee a day you'll be spending most of your day walking back and forth to the bathroom and straining your bladder during meetings. There's your exercise.
  • I heard the same thing on NPR yesterday on the news. However, the story I heard only claimed this was a correlation between people who drink coffee and not causation. Scientists found definite figures that coffee drinkers had a lowered risk of type II diabetes, but that no evidence linked it to the coffee.

    I'd start listening to the audio links and do research, but I'm stuck at this place called My Job and if anyone else can confirm this I'd appreciate it. The link given is not the official paper with its findings and I'm not sure I trust the person who wrote it.
  • Men who drank 6 cups of coffee a day lowered their risk by 50%

    So my first born's first born has had his (assuming 'he') risk lowered by 99% given my current daily intake....
  • Duh! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by banda (206438) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:27AM (#7891270)
    Caffeinated beverages are an appetite suppressant and a metabolism stimulant. I would have to believe that men drinking 6 cups of coffee per day are likely not overweight, and thus not very susceptable to type II diabetes.

    However, high caffeine intake has other problems: impotence being one of them.
  • by Pollux (102520)
    Men who drank 6 cups of coffee a day lowered their risk (of Type II Diabetes) by 50%, while womens risk dropped 30%. The release also includes audio discussions about the suprising findings.

    Hmm...my doc said if I don't stop drinking pop, I'll develop Type II Diabetes, so I better figure out a way to prevent that from happening. Now, I'm not a coffee drinker myself, but hey! There's caffeine in Mountain Dew as well, and I love Mountain Dew! So, let's see here, five cans have as much caffeine as one cup
  • The article was about people who drank coffee, not people who consumed caffeine. There is much more in coffee than just caffeine, as the article points out.

    So all you bloated soda drinkers can stop rejoicing.

  • by DeepDarkSky (111382) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @11:36AM (#7891345)
    The mantra of the statistician and researchers:
    Correlation does not equal causation.

    Is it caffeine? Is it coffee? If it was caffeine, would it make sense to do more tests on other caffeine laden beverages? Tea, for example. But wait, maybe tea has some effects to help against diabetes too. Hmm...caffeinated soft drinks. But maybe in sodas, the effects will cancel each other out because of the high-fructose corn syrup, if, caffeine is indeed the factor.

    Coffee and tea both have "lots of antioxidants" does that mean they are both good against diabetes? Is that what it means? lots of antioxidants = anti-diabetic?

    • You're right: correlation does not prove causation. But the other part of the scientific method is that we use correlation to verify a hypothesis about causation. Correlation studies that may lend creedence to a theory are often the only way to do longitudinal medical research. Are you going to volunteer to spend he next 20 years in a perfectly-controlled lab?
  • thank you!

    Now who the fuck funds these harvard studies? Is it harvard alone or is Starbucks behind all of this?

    And 6 cups a day? What are you nuts? I know people that drink one, two maybe three coffees a day but 6?

  • Instead of drinking sugar filled sodas, your drinking coffee instead...

    Take a look at that can of soda and the ammount of sugar you just ingested.

    Now you wonder why peoples pancreases just up and quit or freak out and start producing huge ammounts of incelin.

    If we cut the refined sugars out of our diets, we'd be doing ourselves a favor!
  • Although the research came from Havard, I wonder if the coffee trilateral commission (Starbucks, Folger's and Maxwell House) paid for it. Or am I paranoid? Or is it the six cups talking?
  • Folks, six cups of coffee seems a little extreme. Seriously. Two, maybe three is reasonable, one per phase of the day. Six you're putting much more serious health risks into play than Diabetes.

    Funny side note, when my dad was a travelling salesman (before my birth) he aparently got addicted to coffee from being on the road. He didn't really realize it, until he literally had heart palpatations, went to the doctor, who told him he had OD'd on caffeine. So the next time he went out he counted the numbe
  • They failed to mention the 80% of the test group who had stomach ulcers due to over consumption of coffee.
  • by Dr. Bent (533421)
    The researchers also found that for men, those who drank more than six cups of caffeinated coffee per day reduced their risk for type 2 diabetes by more than 50 percent compared to men in the study who didn't drink coffee.

    Six cups of coffee contain a total of 810mg of Caffeine [cspinet.org]. That's the same as 14 Mountian Dews. If you're drinking 6 cups of coffee a day, you won't get diabetes because you'll be dead of a heart attack at age 35!
  • Add to that the idea that folks who work with their brain [usatoday.com] are less likely to contract Altzheimer's, and that I don't eat entire large pizza's in one setting anymore, I might live to a ripe old age after all.
  • by fw3 (523647) * on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @12:16PM (#7891881) Homepage Journal
    (And for that matter underweight hyper geeks.)

    Ok this is not a troll/flame but by all means mod me down, it's only /.

    First, caffeine is highly addictive and weight/diet control when addicted to caffeine is extremely difficult, because it interferes with the epinephrine cycle, which in turn regulates blood sugar and blood pressure.

    Second, caffeine is widely shown to substantially interfere with REM sleep, the only part of the sleep cycle which provides meaninful 'rest'. This is the particularly insidious element of the addiction: Less REM sleep -> greater 'reward' from consuming caffeine.

    Third, caffeine in *Coffee* is among the most widely used drugs, becasue coffee is the 2nd largest commodity market on the planet (trailing far behind oil but still far ahead of all other 'foods'). So yeah lots of people take coffee regularly and lots are addicted to caffeine.

    As pointed out above, it's entirely possible that a fair fraction of the benefits found in the study are attributable to the anti-oxidants in coffee, coffee also contains a bunch of other alkaloids besides the caffeine.

    Finaly, the myth that caffeine is required to do geek/technical work is just that, a myth. Wired, jittery programmers don't do well at sustained/quality output (ymmv). When I need to work really extended hours, caffeine is the first thing I eliminate. I can, at a pinch work thru technical problems for 24-hour or longer stints, caffiene will just interfere more once serious fatigue begins to set in, learned this nearly 3 decades ago :-).

    All of which I've learned over the years to avoid by trying to plan work out so that emergency sessions aren't needed, I'm to damned old to put in that kind of burnout time on a regular basis.

  • by Goldsmith (561202) on Tuesday January 06, 2004 @01:03PM (#7892421)
    My dad used to drink an obscene amount of coffee (black, no sugar). He would go through numerous pots a day. He still managed to get type two diabetes. His doctors think it was related to high stress, his high blood pressure, and of course, being overwieght.

    He has since cut out caffine, trimmed down, relaxed, and his blood sugar is very stable.

    There are side effects of caffine, such as anxiety which could easily encourage diabetes.

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