By-Meena Ganagani,Practicing Clinical Nutritionist,Mumbai.
Coffee is one of the most commonly consumed beverages in the world that its beneficial effects on human health have been a subject of many studies. One of the common traditional forms of coffee is green coffee extract (GCE) that prepared from green or raw (unroasted) coffee been. (1)
What Is Green Coffee Extract?
Green coffee is simply made from coffee beans that haven’t been roasted and are completely raw, and it tastes quite different from regular roasted coffee as it has a milder, more ‘herbal’ flavour. Green coffee extract is often used as a dietary supplement, but it can also be used as whole beans to make a delicious hot beverage. (2)
Health Benefits of Green Coffee Extract
· Assists with Weight Loss
· Normalizes blood sugar
· Anti-Aging Properties
· Disease Management and Prevention
· Improves Energy Levels, Focus and Mood (4)
Green Coffee Extract for Over Weight
Overweight and obesity have become a serious health concern. Different weight management strategies are presently utilised and a variety of weight loss supplements sold as “slimming aids” are readily available. However, the efficacy of some of these food supplements remains uncertain. One such supplement is the green coffee extract (GCE).
GCE is present in green or raw coffee. Consumption of coffee has also been shown to produce changes in several glycaemic markers in older adults. Similarly, the consumption of caffeinated coffee can lead to some reductions in long-term weight gain, an effect which is likely to be due to the known thermogenic effects of caffeine intake as well as effects of GCE and other pharmacologically active substances present in coffee. GCE has also been postulated to modify hormone secretion and glucose tolerance in humans. This effect is accomplished by facilitating the absorption of glucose from the distal, rather than the proximal part of the gastrointestinal tract.
GCE has been reported to have antioxidant activity, demonstrated by its ability to scavenge free radicals in vitro, and to increase the antioxidant capacity of plasma in vivo. There is also evidence that certain dietary phenols, including GCE, may modify intestinal glucose uptake in a number of ways. This activity might provide a basis for explaining its effects on body weight. The purported slimming effect of GCE would have a protective effect against diabetes mellitus, via changes in gastrointestinal hormone secretion (5)
Green Coffee Extract as a dietary Supplement
Green coffee, classified as a dietary supplement, refers to raw, non-roasted coffee. Chlorogenic acids, natural antioxidants present in large amounts in green coffee, are the active ingredients in green coffee thought to promote weight loss. Chlorogenic acid is present, to some extent, in roasted coffee, although much of it is destroyed in the roasting process. The most common chlorogenic acids are 5-O-caffeoylquinic acid, 2-O-caffeoylquinic acid, and 4-O-caffeoylquinic acid. Studies have been conducted to assess chlorogenic acid bioavailability and have shown that they are highly absorbed and metabolized when present in coffee. The mechanisms of action of the chlorogenic acids, which are present in green coffee, include modulating glucose metabolism, lowering postprandial glucose, reducing glucose absorption through the intestines, and inhibiting fat accumulation. While caffeine may also promote weight loss, green coffee has measured caffeine content similar to regular brewed coffee. Studies suggest that chlorogenic acids, along with caffeine consumption, may impair glucose absorption rates. According to the Natural Medicine Comprehensive Database, green coffee is considered ‘‘possibly safe’’ if used orally and appropriately. Although little safety information exists regarding green coffee specifically, potential adverse drug events of green coffee include those related to high doses of caffeine, such as agitation, anxiety, arrhythmia, diuresis, headache, insomnia, and vomiting.(6)
Weight Loss-The Research
In a 2017 study on females with obesity, taking 400 mg of green coffee bean extract for 8 weeks, along with an energy-restricted diet, resulted in more weight loss than following an energy-restricted diet alone.
Those who took the extract also had reduced total cholesterol, LDL (bad) cholesterol, and free fatty acids. The researchers found that this intervention affected the breakdown of fat in the body, which may help people control their weight.
Research from 2020 agrees that green coffee bean extract may improve biomarkers, including the following:
- Reduced total cholesterol
- Reduced LDL cholesterol levels, although, it also decreased HDL (good) cholesterol
- A modest, non-significant effect on triglycerides levels(7)
The intake of GCE can promote weight loss. It may also promote blood sugar regulation, improve health markers, such as blood pressure and cholesterol, and provide antioxidants. Green coffee does contain caffeine, which can have numerous side effects when people consume it in large amounts.