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Coffee Bean Extract: Weight-Loss Magic?
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Coffee Bean Extract: Weight-Loss Magic?

It seems like it's been awhile since the last magic diet pill exploded onto the market. Sure, we've had superfoods marketed with the promise that adding them to your diet will result in dramatic weight loss, and diet plans that promise cutting out a single kind of food will melt the pounds right off your body, but there have been no real "magic bullets" as of late.

Well, the wait is over. Now, we have green coffee bean extract, a simple pill that promises dramatic weight loss. And to achieve it, all you have to do is remember to pop two pills twice a day. It's as simple as that!

If you're like most people, you probably hear your mother's voice in your head right now, warning you about things that seem "too good to be true."

Sorting through the science and the hype to determine whether or not green coffee bean extract is a viable weight-loss tool or just one more not-so-magic bullet is daunting, but here's what we know for sure:

  1. There are reasons to believe that green coffee beans may aid in weight loss.

  2. The science, while promising, isn't conclusive enough to guarantee that green coffee bean extract really works or that it's safe.

  3. Even if it does work, there are good reasons to stay away from green coffee bean extract as a weight-loss supplement.

First off, let's get clear on where green coffee bean extract comes from. All coffee beans start out green - they only turn brown once they are roasted.

Now, as I've mentioned before, processing food generally diminishes its nutrient content, and coffee beans are no exception. Coffee beans contain chlorogenic acid, a compound that may prevent your body from absorbing glucose (aiding in weight loss) but that breaks down once the beans are roasted. In unroasted green coffee beans, however, this compound remains intact.

So, will green coffee bean extract help you lose weight? Possibly. One study found that adding green coffee bean extract to a subject's diet resulted in an average weight loss of about 17 pounds. However, so far, studies of green coffee bean extract have been small, so it's difficult to draw broad conclusions.

But even if the research ultimately finds that green coffee bean extract is a miraculous weight-loss aid, there are still plenty of reasons not to take it.

For one, your goal is to build a healthy lifestyle, not just drop a few excess pounds. Using a weight-loss supplement, even if it's natural, won't help you form the good habits that will keep you healthy for the rest of your life. Plus, you want to keep your diet as natural as possible. That's why I don't recommend a lot of supplements. If you want to reap the benefits of chlorogenic acid, grab a peach, some prunes, or a regular cup of coffee. Green tea has also been shown to aid weight loss, and we don't need a scientific study to confirm its safety!

Plus, a few peaches or a cup of tea won't cost nearly as much as a month's supply of green coffee bean extract, which will set you back $25. Sticking to a healthy eating plan is much healthier - and less expensive - than any supplement.