The Green Coffee Bean Project

Green coffee bean extract has been touted for its weight-loss benefits. To learn more about how and if it works, The Dr. Oz Show conducted its own experiment. Read on to learn about the results.

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"Green coffee" refers to the raw or unroasted seeds (beans) of Coffea fruits. Green coffee beans are cleaned, dried, roasted, ground, and brewed to produce coffee. Researchers claim green coffee bean extract can help with weight loss, and the supplement has generated a lot of buzz. Read this fact sheet on green coffee bean extract to learn more about how it works.

The most recent study on green coffee bean was published in January 2012 in Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity. The researchers followed a group of 16 adults who supplemented with a special green coffee bean extract of chlorogenic acids at different dosages (either 700 or 1050 milligrams per day) for 12 weeks. All 16 adults were considered overweight, as demonstrated by a BMI of greater than 25. The subjects lost an average of almost 18 pounds – this was 10% of their overall body weight and 4.4% of their overall body fat.

To test the effects of the green coffee bean extract for The Dr. Oz Show, the show’s medical unit conducted a project under the guidance of experts including Dr. Caroline Apovian and registered dietician Kristin Kirkpatrick. It is the largest project the show has ever done.

The show’s medical unit enlisted 100 women between the ages of 35 and 49 who were overweight with BMIs between 25 and 45. The women were not pregnant or breastfeeding and didn’t have any major medical problems including diabetes, or history of heart attack or stroke. These women received either the green coffee bean extract or a placebo, and were instructed to take 400 mg capsules, three times a day – 30 minutes before each meal. No participant knew which pill they were given. Furthermore, the participants were instructed to not change their diet, and to keep a food journal that would help The Dr. Oz Show learn what these women were eating. After two weeks, the study participants were weighed.  

In two weeks, the group of women who took the green coffee bean extract lost, on average, two pounds. However, the group of women who took the placebo lost an average of one pound – possibly because they were more aware of their diet for that two weeks because of the required food journal.