Green Coffee Extract: Contraindications, How to Take it…an ally for weight loss?

Green Coffee Extract: Contraindications, How to Take it…an ally for weight loss?

Clinical studies have proven how green coffee extracts supports weight loss processes. Moreover, it can also prevent the onset of diabetes and it lowers the arterial hypertension. This product from the beans provides more benefits for our health than contraindications.

The chlorogenic acid from green coffee extract has antioxidant properties, it lowers high blood pressure and helps to regulate the blood sugar.

The green coffee extract contains chlorogenic acid, an antioxidant that can improve our health in many ways.

On the one hand, it contributes to a slower glucose release, which is why it is quite useful for type II diabetes.

Moreover, it has proven its effects to lower a high blood pressure. Taking green coffee extract can stimulate weight loss processes if it is combined with a diet and exercise.

Coffee Intake

Each year, we consume more than 800 thousand million cups of coffee in the world. Coffee is a natural source of antioxidants. It contains more than 700 compounds which are responsible for its scent and flavor.

It is one of the most consumed drinks in the world

From 1950 its production has increased in a 100%1

Coffee beans

What is green coffee?

Green coffee is a variety of unprocessed “raw” coffee.

Green coffee extract is obtained by drying the unprocessed coffee beans

It is usually found in capsules, even though it can be added to drinks and chewing gum

Obtaining green coffee

Green coffee extract is obtained from the non-roasted green coffee beans. Once they are roasted, the grains become brown and they can be used to make coffee.

The most popular caffeine drink

The roasting process does not alter the caffeine content of the plant. However, it destroys most of the chlorogenic acid from the grains.

It is believed that chlorogenic acid helps to lower the blood pressure and regulates the blood sugar levels as well

Composition of green coffee

Some of its main bioactive substances are caffeine and chlorogenic acid (CGA).

The latter gathers a group of compounds that are also present in other products such as tea, berries, cocoa or citrus fruits2⁠.

However, there are more bioactive compounds in coffee such as theophylline, theobroma, cafestol or trigonelline. These elements also have positive effects for our health1

Benefits of green coffee extract for health:

  • Supporting weight loss
  • Lowering the blood sugar levels
  • Regulating a healthy blood pressure

Chlorogenic Acid and Green Coffee

CGA is usually destroyed when the coffee undergoes the roasting process, which reduces its content. This is the reason why there are not high amounts of this substance in a traditional cup of coffee.

Because the grains that are used to make infusions have been roasted previously

Benefits of green coffee beans

Even though green coffee has an average concentration of 5 – 12% of CGA, we can find green coffee products with up to a 50%.

CGA has many benefits for our health, but before we analyze them one by one, we should take a very important aspect into account:

Are we capable of absorbing and using this compound?

Absorbability of Chlorogenic Acid

A study tested the absorbability of this compound on 10 healthy individuals (men and women) who were given 400mg of green coffee extract3⁠.

They performed blood tests after 30 minutes and then every hour. They also gathered urine samples 2 hours before the supplementation and 8 hours after taking the capsules.

The CGA content of the capsules was 42.5%, equal to 170mg

According to this study, the main chlorogenic acids present in coffee are absorbed in the intestines and they are highly bioavailable. However, the authors pointed out that the effects were different in all the subjects.

Moreover, they emphasized that we need more studies, since our genes could affect the absorption and metabolization of these compounds

Benefits of Green Coffee Extract

Blood sugar control

There are different ways in which green coffee extract could help to regulate high blood glucose levels. Two of those ways are:

  1. Inhibiting the intestinal absorption of glucose
  2. Preventing the release of glucose by the liver4⁠.

All of this would result in lower blood glucose levels and a lower insulin activity as well


However, even though the studies with cells and animals are promising, it seems that humans are more complex than that.

A example of this was the following study5⁠. They selected a sample of 15 healthy overweight subjects who were divided in three groups. The first group was given 12g of decaf coffee (containing 264mg of CFA and 72 of trigonelline). The second one was given 1g of CGA and the third was given 500mg of trigonelline. There was also a control group that was given 1g of mannitol.

All the treatments were taken 30 minutes before a tolerance test for 75g of glucose. The researchers took blood samples 30 minutes before the glucose intake and until 120 minutes later.

Glucose control device


They observed a significant drop of the glucose and insulin levels after taking both CGA and trigolline supplementation. This difference was only relevant after 15 minutes, but it did not affect the glucose concentration in general.

However, in another study6, an intake of coffee enriched with CGA did lower the glucose during 2 hours after taking 25g of glucose. This did not occur with non-enriched soluble coffee.

All this means that CGA can help to prevent glucose peaks. Moreover, when we consume carbs in moderate amounts, their effects can be prolonged for two hours after their intake. We should bear in mind that none of the two studies used diabetic patients or people with a low glucose tolerance

Hypertension control

Hypertension is one of the main complications of the metabolic syndrome. It is a very important risk factor for the onset of cardiovascular or renal diseases, among others.

Studies with animals have shown several mechanisms through which CGA could improve the blood pressure. Fundamentally, its effects have been associated with its antioxidant capacity and the fact that it improves the endothelial function.

Some even believe that it can increase the NO (nitric oxide) synthesis, producing a vasodilating effect

Measuring the blood pressure


Recently, the prestigious magazine Nature published a meta-analysis7⁠ which gathered the results from other studies about the effectiveness of CGA on blood pressure.


The results of CGA supplementation were extremely positive (Figure). There was a significant reduction of the systolic and diastolic pressure in those subjects who used supplementation. Moreover, they observed that there was a correlation between the dose and the effect on the systolic pressure.

The doses that were used in the studies were different, between 25 and more than 450mg of CGA.

Effect of chlorogenic acid on blood pressure

Perhaps, the main limitation of the meta-analysis was the fact that the study protocols were different in terms of: dose, type of sample and lifestyle intervention.

However, after reading these results and the conclusions from other reviews8, we could reach the following conclusion: green coffee extract rich in CGA would be a useful supplement for people with hypertension.

Obesity and weight loss

There is a strong link between the intake of CGA and an improved control on the blood sugar and hypertension. Logically, we may ask ourselves if it is also effective to combat against overweight and fat gains.

There also studies that show an inverse relation between taking coffee and becoming overweight and obese.

These effects are usually related to the intake of caffeine and chlorogenic acid from coffee

Green coffee supports weight loss


In these context, there are many studies on animals that suggest that green coffee extract could be an anti-obesity supplement. There is less evidence with humans, but there are positive results as well.

An example could be the second phase from one of the previous studies6⁠.

In this case, a group of overweight subjects took 11g of coffee enriched with CGA. The study lasted 3 months and the subjects did not change neither their lifestyle nor their diet.


The researchers observed a significant decrease of both the weight and the body fat percentage in the group that took enriched coffee. However, the placebo group did not experience this effect.

However, even though there are studies and other reviews9 the evidence is very scarce. In general, its fat loss properties are not always supported10⁠.

The problem lies in the lack of quality of the studies that have been done up until now. Moreover, there has been a lack of uniformity when it comes to the dose, duration and type of sample.

Other possible benefits

Green coffee has been connected to many physiological effects thanks to its many different bioactive compounds. For instance, its antioxidant properties could help to protect the DNA against oxidative damage1⁠.

Some studies talk about the benefits for the lipid profile and the hepatic health of overweight and obese people1

Green coffee could even be able to prevent neuronal and cognitive deterioration thanks to its caffeine and CGA content. These properties have a strong connection to its antioxidant power

Who can benefit from taking green coffee?

  • Those who suffer from hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • People who want to lose weight
  • Patients who suffer type II diabetes

Does green coffee produce side effects?

High doses of chlorogenic acid can cause harmful effect.

The side effects of green coffee are due to caffeine. This element can increase the need to urinate, nervousness, stomach pain, headaches and arrhythmia in very sensitive people.

The interactions of green coffee

There have been reports about the possible interactions of green coffee with other elements.

Diabetic patients should be more careful if they are taking insulin or other oral anti-diabetes elements. In this case, green coffee could cause hypoglycemia.

This is due to the fact that we absorb less glucose and the release of glucose by the liver drops as well.

Diabetic people should consult their doctor previously before taking green coffee extract. Moreover, they should control their blood sugar levels more frequently.

Where can I buy Green Coffee?

Green coffee can help to treat hypertension and type II diabetes, as well as those who want to lose weight. You can check the complete catalog at HSN

Reasons to take green coffee extract

  • Supporting fat loss
  • Potential against cardiovascular diseases
  • Helping to regulate the blood pressure
  • Improving the tolerance to carbohydrates
  • Getting an antioxidant supply


Green coffee extract contains a great variety of compounds which provide many benefits for our health. Apart from its low-moderate caffeine supply, green coffee stands out as one of the main sources of chlorogenic acid (CGA).

When we talk about CGA, we are actually referring to a whole group of substances with biological activity. It is possible to increase the CGA concentration by extracting the green coffee beans.

This allows us to reach effective doses with doses lower than 1 gram of extract daily

Glucose control and fat loss

The studies have provided very promising results when it comes to the effectiveness of green coffee when it comes to controlling the blood glucose and body fat

Regulate the hypertension

However, it seems that the best benefit is for those who suffer hypertension. There are several studies that agree on the fact that it is an effective supplement against a high blood pressure.

Antioxidant effect

Due to its antioxidant effect, green coffee extract could potentially combat against oxidative stress. Or it could improve our hepatic health or the blood lipid levels.

We need more research, but there is not doubt that green coffee extract could be a good supplement for those who suffer the metabolic syndrome


  1. Sanlier N, Atik A, Atik I. Consumption of green coffee and the risk of chronic diseases. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2018;8398:1-13. doi:10.1080/10408398.2018.1461061
  2. Marcason W. What Is Green Coffee Extract? 2013. doi:10.1016/j.jand.2012.12.004
  3. Farah A, Monteiro M, Donangelo CM, Lafay S. Chlorogenic Acids from Green Coffee Extract are Highly Bioavailable in Humans 1,2. J Nutr Biochem Mol Genet Mech. doi:10.3945/jn.108.095554
  4. Naveed M, Hejazi V, Abbas M, et al. Chlorogenic acid (CGA): A pharmacological review and call for further research. Biomed Pharmacother. 2018;97(August 2017):67-74. doi:10.1016/j.biopha.2017.10.064
  5. Van Dijk AE, Olthof MR, Meeuse JC, Seebus E, Heine RJ, Van Dam RM. Acute effects of decaffeinated coffee and the major coffee components chlorogenic acid and trigonelline on glucose tolerance. Diabetes Care. 2009;32(6):1023-1025. doi:10.2337/dc09-0207
  6. Thom E. The Effect of chlorogenic acid (SvetolTM) and chlorogenic enriched coffee (CoffeeSLENDER ®) on the glucose profile and bodyweight in healthy volunteers. J Int Med Res. 2007;35:900-908.
  7. Onakpoya IJ, Spencer EA, Thompson MJ, Heneghan CJ. The effect of chlorogenic acid on blood pressure: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials. J Hum Hypertens. 2015;29(2):77-81. doi:10.1038/jhh.2014.46
  8. Tajik N, Tajik M, Mack I, Enck P. The potential effects of chlorogenic acid, the main phenolic components in coffee, on health: a comprehensive review of the literature. Eur J Nutr. 2017;56:2215-2244. doi:10.1007/s00394-017-1379-1
  9. Onakpoya I, Terry R, Ernst E. The Use of Green Coffee Extract as a Weight Loss Supplement: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomised Clinical Trials. Gastroenterol Res Pract. 2011;2011. doi:10.1155/2011/382852
  10. Buchanan R, Beckett RD. Green Coffee for Pharmacological Weight Loss. J Evidence-Based Complement Altern Med. 2013;18(4):309-313. doi:10.1177/2156587213496818

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About Carlos Sánchez
Carlos Sánchez
Carlos Sánchez has a degree in Human Nutrition and Dietetics, and therefore all his actions are rigorously backed by science.
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