Drinking coffee could affect weight as caffeine linked to ‘staying slim’

While health experts advise against consuming too much caffeine, research has showed how certain levels may positively impact the body.

Coffee lovers will be happy to hear that new research suggests higher blood caffeine levels may help cut risks of diabetes and obesity.

While many people enjoy a cup of coffee first thing, there are others who feel they need a caffeine-fuelled beverage to survive the day. The stimulant helps boost alertness and energy, but health officials regularly urge people not to over consume caffeinated beverages due to side effects like anxiety and heart palpitations.

However, a new study published in the BMJ Medicine journal found that how the body burns caffeine may influence our weight. Academics have said that further research is needed to conclude whether drinking more coffee is actually beneficial.

Dr Dipender Gill, a clinical scientist at Imperial College London, who worked on the new research said previous studies have been unable to show a correlation between caffeine and weight. But the latest findings examined genetic evidence which offered more informative results.

Speaking to PA, he explained that up to 95 per cent of consumed caffeine is metabolised by a specific enzyme. Two genes in the body -CYP1A2 and AHR – both impact this enzyme, by either speeding up or slowing down its function.

Findings ultimately showed that those with slower metabolisms had more caffeine in their blood – and a lower body mass index (BMI).

Dr Gill said: “So, using these genetic variants that cause people to metabolise caffeine faster or slower, we found that slower metabolisers have higher plasma (blood) caffeine levels, and those with higher plasma caffeine levels go on to have a lower body mass index and a lower risk of diabetes.

“It’s the plasma caffeine that’s doing that.”

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