To Your Health/Live Longer: Coffee
This summer, the Telluride Ski Resort and The Peaks Resort & Spa plan to host a series of week-long wellness intensives – Live Longer Retreat – to support your (recurring) New Year’s resolution to get healthy and therefore live well longer. The program is led by Dr. Alan Safdi, a world-renowned internist and gastroenterologist with encyclopedic knowledge of mind-body wellness and preventative medicine. Safdi also has a gift for delivering evidence-based medical findings for healthier living in easily digestible sound bytes.
In the run-up to the retreats (and earlier lectures in March and April), Dr. Safdi plans to post regular updates on Telluride Inside… and Out based on the latest, closely vetted research in health, wellness and longevity. The first in the series, “To Your Health,” was designed to start your New Year off right and jumpstart your Live Longer Retreat session. Safdi writes here about “Food Habits for Life.”
Studies have shown that coffee may have significant health benefits, including protecting against Parkinson’s disease, liver disease, even cancer. Coffee also appears to improve cognitive function and decrease the risk of depression.
Dr. Safdi weighs in on java and type 2 diabetes.
And sign up now to participate in a Live Longer at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-877-448-5416 for further information.
Coffee is the number one consumed antioxidant in the United States. And it is widely believed coffee drinkers are less likely to develop dementia and Parkinson’s disease. Coffee also has some protective effects on the liver. Some studies have shown your morning cup of joe may also help offset cardiovascular disease – although we have to keep in mind that could have as much to do with coffee drinkers consuming fewer simple sugars.
What about type 2 diabetes?
Studies on type 2 diabetes and coffee are also proving to be encouraging. A new study recently appeared in the Journal of Natural Products in which scientists reported that a previously untested compounds appeared to improve cell function and insulin sensitivity in laboratory mice. That finding could spur the development of new drugs to treat or even prevent the disease.
Initially, scientists suspected the caffeine in coffee was responsible for reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes. But later findings discounted the possibility, instead suggesting other substances may play a more important role.
In one laboratory study, Fredrik Brustad Mellbye, Søren Gregersen and colleagues found that a compound called cafestol increased insulin secretion in pancreatic cells when the cells were exposed to glucose. Cafestol also increased glucose uptake in muscle cells just as effectively as a commonly prescribed anti-diabetic drug. In this new study, the researchers wanted to see if cafestol would help prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes in mice.
Researchers divided the mice prone to developing type 2 diabetes into three groups. Two of the groups were fed differing doses of cafestol. After 10 weeks, both sets of cafestol-fed mice had lower blood glucose levels and improved insulin secretory capacity compared to the control. What’s more, ingesting cafestol did not result in hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, a possible side effect of some anti-diabetic medications. The researchers concluded that daily consumption of cafestol could delay the onset of type 2 diabetes in mice, making it a good candidate for drug development to treat or prevent the disease in humans.
So drink up.
More about Dr. Alan Safdi: