Green Coffee Bean Extract: What are the Side Effects?

green coffee bean extract side effectsProponents of green coffee bean extract dietary supplements are quick to point to the perceived successes of the “miracle” product, but that’s just good salesmanship.  There may not be anything inherently wrong with the product itself, but like anything that is consumed, there is a possibility of negative side effect which ought to be examined.

The Science

The chlorogenic acids contained in the extract are said to inhibit the production of body fat.  The optimal production level of these acids seems to be chlorogenic acids in the 45% to 50% range for increased effectiveness.  Different manufacturers offer varying concentrations of chlorogenic acids, milligrams per capsule, as well as other variables in the contents of the supplement, such as whether or not they include additives.

As you will see, the testing of the effectiveness of this supplement is scant.  There is no FDA approval required for dietary supplements, so expectations of more independently verified results in the near future are not good.  The market for this supplement appears to be driven by testimonials of its effectiveness, rather than any clinical studies.

The Testing

Two studies are often cited by marketers of green coffee bean extract: one conducted by Dr. Oz, on his television show, and a second study published by the Journal of Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity.  Both occurred in 2012.

In Dr. Oz’s study, 100 women were selected to participate – none were pregnant or suffering from any medical problems.  The dosage instructions given to half of these women were to take 400 milligrams three times a day, before meals (1200 mg daily).  The other half of the group received placebos with the same instructions.  The participants were further instructed not to change their diets, although simply being aware that they were participating in a weight loss study may have affected their dietary habits.  This study concluded after two weeks and resulted in an average wright loss of 2 pounds for those taking the supplement and an average of one pound of weight loss for the placebo group.

The Journal study was much smaller, involving sixteen adult participants.  However, this study lasted twelve weeks with participants receiving dosages of either 700 or 1050 milligrams per day.  The average weight loss among all participants was eighteen pounds.

Possible Side Effects

People tend to moderate the amount of coffee and tea that they drink because of caffeine.  The general reason for avoiding having too much caffeine is because it can have an effect on sleeping and it can also increase feelings of anxiety.

Products like green coffee bean extract produce concentrated amounts of caffeine as a byproduct of extraction.  These concentrated doses of caffeine can result in a number of side effects.  It has been found that those side effects can include: headaches, insomnia, upset stomach, anxiety, and nervousness.  Concentrated caffeine can also prompt an irregular heartbeat.

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