Aims/hypothesis: Coffee and tea consumption has been associated with a lower type 2 diabetes risk but little is known about how changes in coffee and tea consumption influence subsequent type 2 diabetes risk. We examined the associations between 4 year changes in coffee and tea consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes in the subsequent 4 years.
Methods: We prospectively followed 48,464 women in the Nurses' Health Study (NHS; 1986-2006), 47,510 women in NHS II (1991-2007) and 27,759 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS; 1986-2006). Diet was assessed every 4 years using a validated food-frequency questionnaire. Self-reported cases of incident type 2 diabetes were validated by supplementary questionnaires.
Results: During 1,663,319 person-years of follow-up, we documented 7,269 cases of incident type 2 diabetes. Participants who increased their coffee consumption by more than 1 cup/day (median change = 1.69 cups/day) over a 4 year period had an 11% (95% CI 3%, 18%) lower risk of type 2 diabetes in the subsequent 4 years compared with those who made no changes in consumption. Participants who decreased their coffee intake by more than 1 cup/day (median change = -2 cups/day) had a 17% (95% CI 8%, 26%) higher risk for type 2 diabetes. Changes in tea consumption were not associated with type 2 diabetes risk.
Conclusions/interpretation: Our data provide novel evidence that increasing coffee consumption over a 4 year period is associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, while decreasing coffee consumption is associated with a higher risk of type 2 diabetes in subsequent years.