Chlorogenic Acid (CGA) Popularity and Uses
There are several pieces of marketing that claim “green coffee extract,” also known as CGA, Coffee bean extract, 5-O-caffeoylquinic acid and 3-O-caffeoylquinic acid as the next best supplement.
The advertising claims that 120-300mg. per day helps to reduce belly fat, improve blood pressure, circulation, bacterial infections, Alzheimer’s disease and the effects of Type 2 Diabetes. The preferred form of CGA is found in supplement form, the actually green coffee beans are extremely bitter and most describe it as unpleasant to consume. Follow dose recommendations on the bottle and try not to consume in the evening or afternoon hours so sleep quality will not be compromised. It is recommended taking 30 minutes prior to mealtime to help control appetite, I would only recommend taking it with breakfast and lunch. Some doses are up to 3000mg. It is not recommended to start out with this high of a dose in case your body is unable to tolerate that high amount of the extract, look at the list of side effects. Be careful and always take a low dose to start with and test for interactions.
Although scientist discovered CGA in the 1930’s the research is very new and it has been marked by some scientific research journals as “in progress,” there is still more research that needs to be compiled to get an accurate answer to all of the major metabolic claims. The 120-300 mg. is a moderate dose and further research is being done to indicate if a higher dose would be more beneficial.
Chlorogenic Acid Definition
Chlorogenic acid is a potent antioxidant rich phytochemical found in green coffee and coffee beans. A phytochemical is defined as a biologically active compound in plants. CGA is made from the etherification of cinnamic acids, such as caffeic, ferulic, and p-coumaric acids, with (-)-quinic acid. CGA’s have been advertised as being able to reduce blood sugar levels and potentially reverse or reduce symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes. It has also been related to weight loss and obesity prevention, but there is not enough research to confirm this correlation and some experts believe it is not necessarily due to chlorogenic acid. The amount of CGA is highest in the beans before they are roasted, the amount is dramatically reduced in roasted coffee beans.
Inconsistency of amount found in Food Sources
It can be beneficial to supplement, unfortunately the doses found in food sources are not enough to support a long-term care and preventative claim such as anti- diabetic. Green tea is another healthy beverage choice associated with major health benefits but the amount of tea that needs to be consumed to have optimal benefits is close to 10 cups per day.
Side Effects Include
- Stimulant Effects
- Laxative Effects
- Interacts with Antidepressants/ Mood stabilizer medications
- Upset Stomach
- Increased or irregular Heart Rate
- Rapid Breathing
Chlorogenic acid (CGA) does have stimulant effects, but the amount is estimated to be about one-third less potent than coffee. CGA is found in coffee and espresso but the amount is not consistent, so the amount of coffee or espresso to drink to receive benefits is not recommended a this time because the amounts are unreliable. Not only does CGA have stimulant effects, it is also the compound in prunes that has a laxative effect, this can be beneficial for those who suffer from constipation.
On a more serious note Chlorogenic acid can interact with anti-depressants and mood stabilizers such as bipolar medications. Check with your doctor before supplementing with CGA if you are taking anything for mood disorders, anxiety and depression.
Always keep in mind too much of a good thing is not good, the same symptoms of drinking too much traditional coffee or taking too much of a stimulant can have negative effects especially on the heart, stomach and digestive tract. If you feel headaches, irritability, vomiting, nausea, insomnia, etc. Consult with your doctor.
Special precautions & warnings should be taken if you suffer from the following conditions. Consult with your doctor before using CGA. The below conditions can be made worse when caffeine is consumed.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding, Abnormally high levels of homocysteine, Bleeding disorders, Diarrhea and Glaucoma.
High blood pressure, Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and Thinning bones (osteoporosis)
Drug interactions from chlorogenic acid are related mostly to the caffeine in CGA. Consult with your doctor before considering the supplement. It is best to avoid CGA if you have been advised not to consume caffeine.
- Drug Interactions include:
- Adenosine (Adenocard)
- Alendronate (Fosamax)
- Antibiotics (Quinolone antibiotics)
- Clozapine (Clozaril)
- Dipyridamole (Persantine)
- Disulfiram (Antabuse)
- Fluvoxamine (Luvox)
- Medications for asthma (Beta-adrenergic agonists)
- Medications for depression (MAOIs)
- Medications that slow blood clotting (Anticoagulant / Antiplatelet drugs)
- Pentobarbital (Nembutal)
- Riluzole (Rilutek)
- Stimulant drugs
- Verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan)
CGA and Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 Diabetes has become an epidemic, the Mayo Clinic defines Type 2 Diabetes as a condition that affects the way your body processes glucose, either producing too much insulin or not enough. A Dutch study with 17000 men who consumed 7 or more cups of coffee per day proved that their risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes was reduced. CGA is a more potent form of the antioxidants found in traditional coffee, therefore, increasing the effects and improving mental conditions that are related to Diabetes such as memory and anxiety. A study in the Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine performed a study on obese induced mice that showed improved insulin metabolism, reversed fat accumulation and insulin resistance by regulating the genes involved in fatty tissue storage and inflammation in visceral adipose tissue.
It has also been shown to reduce the amount of glucose that accumulates in the liver, improving liver health and reducing the risk of liver cancer and cirrhosis.
Reduction in Risk for Gallstones
Harvard University performed a study with over 80,000 women. Those who consumed a regular intake of coffee (1-2 cups per day) had a lower risk for producing gallstones.
Those who consumed 2 or more cups per day reduced their risk for gallbladder surgery by 9 percent, 3 or more by 22 percent and 4 or more brought the risk down by 28 percent, only drinking one cup per day did not reduce risk significantly.
The effects of supplementing and/or consuming Chlorogenic Acid for individuals who have consulted with their doctor before supplementing may see mild to moderate improvements in glucose metabolism, weight management, heart health, and mental health.