By Emily Sayes
Coffee beans are roasted: a process that alters the bean’s taste, aroma and color. It also changes the bean’s chemical structure and health benefits.
Drink it in a latte. Pour it over ice. Taste it in a tiramisu. Sip it from an espresso martini. Blend it in a green smoothie. Coffee in a smoothie?
We aren’t joking: try adding some coffee to your morning smoothie with green coffee extract. Trust us, by the time you’ve reached the end of this article you’ll be green with envy if you haven’t grabbed yourself some of this bad boy.
What is the color of a coffee bean? If you answered brown, the joke's on you. Prior to roasting (or processing), the humble coffee bean is actually green.
Coffee beans are roasted to produce the coffee bean that we use for our daily latte. The roasting process alters the bean’s taste, aroma, and color. It also alters the bean’s chemical structure and nutrient concentration. This means that the health benefits associated with drinking coffee and consuming green coffee bean extract, are quite different.
In particular, chlorogenic acid and caffeine are responsible for the green coffee bean’s health food status.
Chlorogenic acid is an antioxidant. It’s good for you. And, surprise: there’s more chlorogenic acid in green coffee beans than the roasted variety (which is lost during the roasting process). The body quickly absorbs and metabolizes chlorogenic acid, meaning our bodies can easily take advantage of its bountiful health benefits.
Coffee is often given a bad rep a la caffeine. Sure, drinking 20 cups of coffee in a day will keep you up at night, but, in moderation, the morning latte isn’t all bad. It improves mood and brain function, protects against heart disease, enhances performance, boosts your metabolism, and helps you maintain a healthy weight.
Green coffee bean extract contains less caffeine than its roasted counterpart. A serving of coffee contains about 100mg of caffeine. The same serving of green coffee contains just 20mg of caffeine. Consuming green bean extract enables you to get your caffeine ‘fix’ without sending your system into a caffeine-induced hyperactive episode. And your body is simultaneously absorbing high amounts of chlorogenic acid. It’s a win-win concoction of healthy green goodness.
So, what are the green bean’s health benefits?
1. Assists with Weight Loss
Perhaps the green coffee bean is best known for its potential to induce weight loss.
Research suggests that chlorogenic acid helps the body to burn glucose and stored body fat, reduces the absorption of carbohydrates (lowering blood sugar and insulin spikes), and improves cholesterol.
In one particular study, a group of 30 overweight individuals was divided into two groups: one group consumed green coffee bean extract, while the other drank regular instant coffee. At the end of 12 weeks, the group consuming green coffee bean extract lost on average 11.9 pounds (5.4kg) and dropped 3.6% body fat. The group consuming plain instant coffee lost on average 3.7 pounds (1.7 kg) and dropped just 0.7% body fat.
Numerous studies have also shown that caffeine helps to boost metabolism anywhere from 3 – 11%, which, again, helps the body to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. In another study published in the Journal of Physiology and Behavior, it was found that people who drank caffeinated coffee had a 16% increase in metabolism over those who drank decaffeinated coffee. Death to decaf!
2. Normalizes blood sugar
Green coffee bean extract also helps to lower inflammation which has positive effects on blood sugar levels. In fact, the green coffee bean has been shown to reduce fat accumulation and insulin resistance, and may even reduce the absorption of glucose in obese people.
The green coffee bean’s ability to help normalize or reduce high blood sugar levels can, in turn, lower the risk of type two diabetes.
3. Anti-Aging Properties
Shout out to antioxidants for keeping us fly.
Green bean coffee extract holds many antioxidant properties, the majority of which have been shown to slow the effects of aging.
The high concentration of chlorogenic acid present in the green coffee extract reduces redness associated with excessive sunlight exposure. Caffeine also contains anti-aging properties. It limits photodamage, decreases skin roughness and wrinkle formation, and reduces the appearance of crow’s feet.
No wonder dermatologists and skincare companies include green coffee bean extract in their products!
4. Disease Management and Prevention
Green coffee beans are bursting full of antioxidants which help fight against damaging free radicals in the body. Free radicals assist in the development of diseases and cancer. In fact, in a 2004 study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, it was concluded that chlorogenic acid antioxidants may prevent the proliferation of four kinds of cancer cells, suggesting green coffee bean extract may even help to prevent cancer.
5. Improves Energy Levels, Focus and Mood
The American Psychological Association has concluded that caffeine has significant effects on psychomotor and cognitive performance, psychological well-being, blood pressure, and athletic performance. Other studies conclude that caffeine is capable of altering attention, alertness, motivation and reaction times, to name a few. This is why some of us refer to our morning coffee as a cup of “get s!@# done”.
So, every so often, ditch the coffee and opt for some green coffee bean goodness! How? Check out our Organic Pre-Workout Powder, which includes organic green coffee bean extract: the perfect way to start your workout or workday!