Can Caffeine Cause Diabetes?

A new study further proves the link between sugary drinks and type 2 diabetes, but caffeine may have no effect
Sugary drinks are linked to diabetes, but the verdict is still out on caffeine.

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Let's go through the list of the health problems sugary drinks have been linked to: strokes, premature birth, and genetic obesity, to name a few. And while more studies are now confirming a link between sugary drinks and diabetes, no one is quite sure where caffeine fits into the picture. 

A new study that followed more than 100,000 Americans for more than 20 years, reports Reueters, showed that those who drank sugary drinks were 23 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. But the research on caffeinanted sugary drinks was unclear: those who drank caffeinated sugary drinks, compared to those who drank none, still had a 13 percent chance of developing diabetes. Those who drank non-caffeinated sugary drinks also had a higher risk of diabetes, at 6 percent. 

Reuters notes that past studies have showed that caffiene hinders the body's ability to process sugar. However, those who drank coffee and tea had a lower risk of developing diabetes; at 8 percent lower for female coffee drinkers and 4 percent lower for male coffee drinkers. That may further prove the benefits of coffee and tea to prevent diabetes. A study this month showed that countries with higher rates of black tea (a caffeinated tea) consumption had lower rates of type 2 diabetes. Is caffeine the miracle elixir for diabetes — or is it the properties of coffee and tea?

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