Caffeine May Worsen Diabetes

In small sample, patients with type 2 show increased blood sugar levels
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 28, 2008 4:53 PM CST
Republican presidential hopeful, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, right, Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, center, and Florida State Senator Alex Diaz de la Portilla, drink a "Cuban coffee" along...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Diabetics may want to consider kicking the coffee habit after a new study showed caffeine consumption increased blood sugar levels, Reuters reports. Type 2 diabetics given caffeine pills equivalent to four cups of coffee experienced an 8% rise in average blood glucose levels relative to days when they were given placebo pills, Duke University researchers say.

The findings appear to contradict earlier studies that found coffee drinkers had a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. The lead researcher speculated that caffeine may interfere with the transport of glucose from the blood to the tissues where it is needed, causing it to accumulate in the blood. Another possibility is that caffeine stimulates the release of adrenaline, which can raise blood sugar levels.