Researchers explore the functional potential of green coffee beans

By Nathan Gray contact

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Researchers explore the functional potential of green coffee beans

Related tags: Coffee

There is strong potential for the use of ground green coffee beans to be used directly as a functional ingredient in supplements and foods, say researchers.

The preliminary study, published in LWT - Food Science and Technology, investigated the potential for using ground coffee beans as a functional additive by testing the grinding characteristics, sensory properties, and release of phelonic compounds and antioxidants.

Led by Dariusz Dziki and corresponding author Urszula Gawlik-Dzik from the University of Life Sciences, Poland, the team behind the research noted a growing consumer interest in green coffee, which has been backed up by recent scientific studies that have suggested that both bioactive components of coffee (phenolic acids and caffeine) may help to prevent a range of diseases.

“Results of our study clearly show that powdered GCB [green coffee bean] may be used directly, without extract preparation, for food supplementation,” wrote the team.

“Phenolics released during simulated digestion were highly bioavailable in vitro,” they noted. “Simulated digestion released phytochemicals acting as chelating and reductive agents, free radical scavengers and lipid-preventers.”

Research details

Gawlik-Dziki and colleagues studied the the grinding characteristics of green coffee beans before assessing the sensory properties of bread enriched with green coffee bean flour and testing bioavailability through in vitro​ model of digestion.

According to the team, GCB was characterized by high grinding energy requirements. They revealed that the dominant compound identified was 5-caffeoylquinic acid, while caffeine content was comparable in all samples and averaged from 4.36 mg/g dw to 4.99 mg/g dw.

Meanwhile, preliminary tests on a proposed functional bread product made with GCB powder indicated that phenolic compounds were highly mastication-extractable, which may predict their high bioaccessibility and bioavailability, said the team.

“The content of phenolics was strongly correlated with powdered GCB addition,”​ they added. “The sensory characteristics linking results indicated that a partial replacement of wheat flour in bread with up to 3% ground GCB powder gives satisfactory overall consumer acceptability.”

Bread enriched with GCB also possessed higher antiradical activity than control samples, the authors revealed.

Green coffee bread

The Polish research team noted that an important aspect of the research was to try to determine the suitability of GCB to obtain a functional product dedicated to people suffering from, or at risk of metabolic syndrome.

“An innovative solution is to offer a product containing both phenolic acids to hinder the absorption of fat and caffeine which contributes to energy expenditure and improved mood,”​ they suggested.

“Bread is one of the main products consumed in the cultural area of many countries and resignation from its consumption for many people is impossible.”

“The proposed product is mainly targeted at this group of consumers –it is a compromise between ‘traditional’ and pro-health food,”​ they said.

Source: LWT - Food Science and Technology
Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1016/j.lwt.2015.03.076
“Ground green coffee beans as a functional food supplement – preliminary study”
Authors: Dariusz Dziki, Urszula Gawlik-Dziki, et al

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