Green coffee beans have become increasingly popular as of late, in fact, they’re now one of the most popular supplements and weight loss products around. They’ve also been associated with a host of health benefits, from protecting the heart and lowering the risk of neurological diseases, to anti-aging effects and more.
These green-hued beans are roasted seeds of the plant Coffea Arabica. During roasting, the natural antioxidants present in the coffee beans are removed, which is not at all beneficial for our health, but these beans do not undergo that same procedure and are actually considered as highly beneficial for our overall health, in addition to helping to support weight loss efforts.
While there is some debate as to whether the benefits are worth risking the side effects, which we’ll discuss a bit later, there is evidence to believe green coffee may be very beneficial for those who can tolerate caffeine.
1. Powerful Antioxidants
Green coffee beans are loaded with antioxidants, provided they’re unprocessed, as mentioned. Those powerful antioxidants help to lessen the damaging effects of harmful free radicals in the body and help support overall health. Several studies have confirmed that raw and unprocessed green coffee beans contain 100% pure Chlorogenic Acid (CGA), which is essentially an ester of caffeic acid with strong antioxidant properties.
Many experts believe that free radical damage is a factor in the development of a host of diseases, including cancer and atherosclerosis. Antioxidants like those found in green coffee beans may play an important role in either managing or preventing not only some cancers and heart disease, but Alzheimer’s disease, macular degeneration, arthritis-related conditions and more.
2. Normalizing Blood Sugar
Thanks to the high level of antioxidants and other healthful compounds in green coffee beans, they can also help lower inflammation, which offers positive effects on blood sugar. It may be helpful for lowering glucose levels, which, in turn, may lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Research published in the Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine journal demonstrated that a decaffeinated green coffee bean was able to reverse the negative effects of a high-fat diet, by reducing fat accumulation and insulin resistance.
Another study, conducted in 2007 out of Oslo Norway and published in the Journal of International Medical Research showed that chlorogenic acid enriched coffee could potentially reduce the absorption of glucose in obese people.
In 2014, the Journal of Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry published a report that looked at the effects of chlorogenic acid, caffeine, and coffee on diabetic rats. The study showed that a green coffee bean extract may help to prevent brain disorders connected with diabetes, in addition to having to have the ability to improve memory and reduce anxiety, better than just coffee or caffeine alone.
3. Aiding Fat and/or Weight Loss
Green coffee beans were initially thrust into the spotlight when researchers discovered its ability to aid with weight loss. While it’s no miracle for losing weight, there is evidence to suggest it can help enhance the results when consumed while following a healthy diet and engaging in regular exercise. That’s because of the substance chlorogenic acid, which is believed to be responsible for those effects. Chlorogenic acid is highly absorb-able and known to aid the body in burning glucose and stored fat for energy.
Caffeine plays a part too, in fact, a number of studies have shown that it helps boost the metabolism, anywhere from 3 to 11 percent. As caffeine provides a stimulant effect on the central nervous system, drinking it raises the metabolism and increases the oxidation of fatty acids, aiding one’s ability to lose weight or maintain an already ideal weight. In fact, caffeine is actually one of only a very few natural compounds that have been scientifically proven to aid fat burning. One study, published in the Journal of Physiology and Behavior, looked at people who drank caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee. They found that caffeinated coffee drinkers had a 16% increase in metabolism over the decaffeinated group.
Still, the main active ingredient in green coffee beans is believed to be its chlorogenic acid. Some research on humans has suggested that it can decrease the absorption of carbohydrates from the digestive tract, which lowers blood sugar levels and insulin spikes, which means, consuming a green coffee bean extract is similar to following a slightly lower carb diet.
In a 2016 animal study out of South Korea, published in the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Medicine, the effects of green coffee bean extract were tested on obese mice, and the researchers discovered that it “significantly decreased body weight gain, liver weight and white adipose tissue weights with regulation of adipose tissue lipolysis hormones, like adiponectin and leptin.”
4. Protecting Heart Health
As hypothesized in animal studies, the chlorogenic acid in green coffee beans appears to reduce glucose absorption, an effect that could potentially provide a protective role in diabetes management, explain the effects on body weight, and even positively affect the blood vessels to offer a major positive impact on heart health. In both human and animalstudies, it’s been found to lower blood pressure in those with hypertension.
According to WebMD, there has also been research that found people with mild high blood pressure who take a specific green coffee extract, 93 mg or 185 mg daily, have reduced blood pressure in less than a month.