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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Coffee and Tea Said to Reduce Diabetes Risk

In its March 2010 issue, the Nutrition Action Healthletter, a publication of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, reported that a review of 18 studies with a total of 450,000 subjects around the world revealed that people who drank 3-4 cups of regular coffee per day had a 25% lower risk of diabetes than people who drank 2 or less cups per day. One might think that this was due to the caffeine content of coffee, but the effect was even stronger for decaffeinated coffee (35% reduced risk). The same quantity of tea had a more moderate effect (20% reduction). As with any cross-sectional study, one must be cautious about concluding cause-and-effect because people who choose to drink coffee or tea may be in some way constitutionally different from people who don't. A longitudinal study will be necessary to determine if people randomly assigned to drink or not drink coffee or tea have different risk of diabetes. In the meantime, this and other studies indicate that moderate consumption of coffee or tea appears beneficial.

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