If you’re one of the thousands of people who drinks coffee for that jolt of caffeine to jump-start your day, you’re probably tired of listening to how your caffeine habit is ruining your well being. After all, excessive caffeine intake has been connected to an increase in weight, increased stress, poor sleep and other medical issues. Well, enough of the bad about coffee; here’s a little good: Coffee, particularly the fruit of the coffee bean, also contains a health-promoting phytonutrient called chlorogenic acid.
Studies suggest that consuming 3-4 cups of coffee daily (which many people do) reduces the risk of developing insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes, and is effective in weight loss. Whether the coffee is caffeinated or decaffeinated does not matter. What’s to account for these health benefits? Chlorogenic acid seems to impact how glucose is processed, thus helping the body to burn fat and use it as energy. While it is also present in high amounts in cherries and plums, studies suggest coffee is chlorogenic acid’s greatest dietary source. Needless to say, degrees of this phytonutrient will vary more or less widely in several processed roasted coffee beans. Still, among coffee beans, the dried, raw green bean of the coffee fruit, especially the Robusta bean, is the richest source.
An all-natural water-soluble extract of raw, decaffeinated green coffee beans is obtained by a traditional extraction method. This is important in that up to 70 percent of chlorogenic acids can be destroyed by roasting. A high-quality, standardized extract of 400 mg has the chlorogenic content of up to six or seven cups of coffee. Yet it is free of a number of the harmful acids in coffee (cafestol and kahweol), and with only 25 percent of the caffeine. Raw green coffee bean extracts also contain quinic and caffeic acid, which possess strong antioxidant power, notably limiting the oxidation of lipids (fats) in the liver.
In a recent clinical study published in the journal Phytotherapie, 50 people 19-75 years of age received 400 mg of green coffee bean extract for 60 days. Participants who received the green coffee bean extract lost 5.7 percent of their initial weight, corresponding to a median weight loss of 11 lbs. The placebo group, which did not get any coffee bean extract, lost only 2.8 percent of their initial weight over the same time period.
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