Coffee is a very refreshing beverage and the favorite drink of many people. However, it also becomes addictive. Some regular coffee drinkers find it very difficult to function or function without it. Caffeine, the cause of one’s addiction to coffee, often energizes the body and eliminates fatigue. This effect allows us to work harder and start our day full of energy. In addition, some of us like to drink coffee just to enjoy its taste. However, these beneficial effects of coffee are unknown due to its ability to worsen some symptoms of high blood sugar.
Diabetes mellitus or diabetes is a disease that affects the human body’s ability to process blood glucose to nourish cells. Diet plays an important role in diabetes management, leading people to eat a healthy, balanced diet to keep their blood sugar level in the target range. You can use a tracking app, such as HealthifyPro 2.0 that is integrated with a smart scale, calorie counter, and a BIOS-a CGM-based wearable. Metabolic panel tests carefully examine the blood sample. It includes 80 additional parameters to assess your metabolic health. Next, Continuous Diabetes Monitoring studies your blood glucose levels in real time. As a result, you get better metabolic health through dietary and lifestyle modifications, such as removing a few extra cups of coffee.
Coffee contains thousands of natural enzymes, including caffeine, that positively affect the body. However, for people with diabetes or prediabetes, coffee is undoubtedly an unhealthy addition to the diet. It increases blood sugar and insulin levels, making you more insulin resistant. Moreover, consuming coffee or other beverages that are high in caffeine will give you an energy boost. However, it will eventually break down, or tire out after the components wear out from the body.
Coffee and diabetes: the link
Coffee may not be suitable for diabetics. Also, countless studies have reported that drinking a lot of coffee is bad for health. It affects the normal kidney function and eventually causes irreversible damage. Therefore, caffeine is considered harmful to health and the drinks are recommended to be consumed in regulated quantities. In addition, there have been new studies on the effect of coffee on blood sugar.
People with or prediabetes need to know how different drinks affect their blood sugar level. For example, coffee raises blood sugar and causes health concerns for diabetics. Unfortunately, there is little information on this claim, so one needs to understand all the effects and types of drinking coffee to determine if it raises blood sugar levels.
Different ways to drink coffee
Coffee comes in different types with varying levels of processing. Among the main categories are decaffeinated, whole bean, and organic coffee. In addition, coffee husks turn into successive drinks due to their high content of dietary fiber.
The processing of coffee beans generally affects caffeine levels which are completely unrelated to blood sugar. However, the method of preparation can be important when examining whether coffee raises blood sugar.
Here are some ways to easily prepare your coffee for consumption:
Black coffee refers to making coffee drinks without milk or cream. Black coffee is prepared from ground / crystallized coffee and water. Many prefer adding sugar or honey to sweeten black coffee and remove the intense bitterness. Black coffee without sugar can be safe to eat if you stay within the 3 cups per day range. However, adding sugar to black coffee can raise your blood sugar levels because you’ll be ingesting a lot of sugar at once.
It is a cult favorite of people who love their coffee strong and bitter. Espresso is pre-made coffee that is then brewed until golden cream settles on top. Espresso usually has a great flavor without sugar. Many enjoy the rich coffee aroma and strong taste. However, people who like the sweetness of their coffee add small amounts of sugar to it to control the bitterness. Although not very healthy in other respects, espresso should not affect your blood sugar if taken without added sugar.
Latte is one of the popular coffee preparation methods among people who like to add milk to their coffee. Latte preparation involves adding shots of espresso to steaming hot milk. It can be eaten with or without sugar, depending on your preference. If you are using unsweetened dairy milk, the latte doesn’t have much room to increase your blood sugar levels.
Plant-based milks such as soybean and coconut generally do not contain sweeteners and can be enjoyed by diabetics. However, if your milk contains sugar or you drink a prepackaged latte that only requires the addition of water, it may be full of sugars. Additionally, consuming latte mixes can increase your blood sugar levels significantly if you drink more than one glass per day.
Cappuccino is a fat-filled version of a latte. This coffee preparation involves adding milk and cream to make the drink richer in taste and texture. Cappuccinos can have dangerous effects on blood sugar levels if taken with sugar. Sweetened creams may also contain added sugar, depending on which brand you buy.
Like a latte, a ready-to-eat cappuccino may contain high levels of added sugar to make it taste better. Cappuccinos should be taken in limited quantities so as not to affect blood sugar levels.
Frappuccinos are another cult favorite among people, especially teenagers and young adults. Frappuccinos come in different flavors, and juices are common in this drink. The drink is made by mixing ground coffee with cold milk and ice to produce a cold coffee drink.
If there was a type of coffee that raised blood sugar levels, it would be a Frappuccino. This coffee uses a large amount of sugar and juices contain sugar, which makes it unsuitable for diabetics. Drinking a tall glass of Frappuccino will significantly increase blood sugar levels in people across age groups.
Filter coffee is an Indian version of pour-over where coffee is made by mixing hot water and milk. This style of coffee doesn’t always use sugar. However, it can come with sugar served separately. Filter coffee is slightly better than latte and cappuccino because it is more dilute and does not taste sweet. However, if you add sugar to filter coffee, you should monitor your intake to prevent high blood glucose levels.
Coffee and its effects on the body
The Food and Drug Administration has generally suggested 400 mg of caffeine (about 4 or 5 cups) as the maximum for healthy adults to drink coffee per day. If you have diabetes, the minimum will be useful because a high concentration will negatively affect the level of sugar in the blood. Coffee and caffeine in general have different effects on the body. According to a recent study, regular coffee consumption directly affects insulin, with the effect varying depending on an individual’s health and overall caffeine consumption.
According to studies, coffee not only provides energy and promotes a faster metabolism. Here are some of the common intrinsic effects of coffee:
- Caffeine affects the central nervous system and the brain in general. People like to drink coffee to feel energized and alert. Coffee eliminates signs of fatigue because it speeds up your metabolism for a short time. However, too much coffee can cause headaches and make you feel unsettled. Likewise, caffeine withdrawal can make you restless as it is addictive.
- Caffeine affects the metabolic rate in the body and increases it significantly. According to studies, coffee speeds up the metabolism and makes it burn calories to release energy. Therefore, the more caffeine you take in, the higher your metabolic rate. Additionally, caffeine enhances fat burning by increasing the metabolic rate.
- Caffeine does not stay in the body for long. Since the beverage is primarily liquid, the caffeine is filtered out by the kidneys and quickly absorbed through the urine. Too much caffeine can cause long-term kidney complications because it stresses these organs.
Coffee Can Raise Blood Sugar Levels: Here’s How!
Sometimes, drinking coffee can raise your blood sugar levels. However, several contradictory studies show that caffeine may increase blood sugar levels or may not affect it at all. You should examine some research to see what opinion you should take.
Most research on coffee that raises blood sugar levels generally shows results in a very controlled but small setting. They will organize a large-scale analysis in the future. However, there are some cases where coffee can raise the blood sugar levels in the body:
- Consuming coffee with added sugars increases the likelihood of high blood sugar levels. Pre-packaged coffee drinks may contain flavoring syrups. Flavoring syrups often use high-fructose corn syrup as a sugar supplement. When you drink a lot of fructose, you may experience insulin resistance, and your glucose levels may rise.
- Studies have shown that people with diabetes may see a rise in their blood sugar levels soon after consuming coffee. However, the study also showed that drinking coffee would not have lasting effects on blood sugar levels in the long term.
- Drinking only healthy amounts of coffee will not affect your sugar levels. In the long run, excess coffee consumption may lead to health problems. However, a study confirmed that caffeine may not be responsible for raising blood sugar because decaffeinated coffee gave similar results.
Ways to regulate coffee intake to prevent side effects
If you’re a regular coffee drinker, the data on blood sugar may confuse you even more. While it is not harmful to have small amounts of coffee from time to time, you need to regulate your coffee consumption to avoid future problems.
Since there is no proper research to prove whether coffee raises blood sugar levels, you should consider its potential health effects and stay safe. Here are some practical tips to implement if you want to have coffee without side effects:
- Do not add sugar or other sweetening agents to your coffee. While coffee may moderately raise your blood sugar levels, the sugar you add to your coffee will dramatically alter your glucose levels. In addition, even sugar-free alternatives can be harmful because excessive fructose intake is harmful to your health.
- Always brew your coffee at home or visit a good coffee shop to get your regular coffee. Don’t drink packaged coffee drinks because they may contain added sugars. These sugars can raise your blood sugar level if your coffee isn’t.
- If you drink black coffee, drink no more than three cups a day. One cup is enough for a day for a coffee with milk and cream or a cappuccino. Also, don’t add sweeteners or flavorings to your coffee. Sweet coffee with smoothies should be a once in a while experience, especially for diabetics.
However, consuming coffee in limited quantities is vital as it has many other proven side effects on the body. If you avoid sugar and cream with your coffee and consume no more than one or two cups a day, you will be safe from their side effects.
One would speculate that coffee may not be responsible for the high blood sugar levels alone. While some studies suggest that coffee can cause insulin resistance in people with diabetes, other studies show that the rise in blood sugar levels will last for a short time. Since all trials to date have been conducted in small numbers, it may take time to reach conclusions that include all individuals. Studies have also indicated that people who drink caffeine regularly do not experience any side effects on their blood sugar. Again, however, it is difficult to determine whether the result applies to everyone.
With such mixed evidence about coffee’s effect on blood glucose levels, you should consult your healthcare professional to discover what works best for you. Usually, a cup of coffee an hour or two after breakfast might not be so bad for you. However, everyone reacts to coffee differently. Therefore, drinking coffee should be safe (unless you have any medical reasons to avoid the beverage) as long as you monitor your blood sugar level. Also, stick to coffee with moderate and little sugar.