Researchers at the University of Illinois are interested in the potential of inflammation-fighting compounds found in the silverskin and husk of coffee beans for their benefits in alleviating chronic disease and in adding value to would-be "waste" products from the coffee processing industry. Their study shows that when fat cells of mice were treated with water-based extracts from coffee beans skins, two phenolic compounds, protocatechuic acid and gallic acid, in particular reduced fat-induced inflammation in the cells and improved glucose absorption and insulin sensitivity.
The findings - published in Food and Chemical Toxicology - show promise for these bioactive compounds, when consumed as part of the diet, as a strategy for preventing obesity-related chronic illnesses, such as Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. For the study, the fat cells and immune cells were cultured together to recreate the "real-life" interaction between the two cells. Significantly, these "brown-like" cells are known as fat burners, and they contain more mitochondria, an important organelle in cells that turns nutrients into energy. The researchers observed that some phenolics were able to stimulate browning of the fat cells, increasing the content of mitochondria in adipocytes, or fat cells. When macrophages interact with fat cells, the cells have fewer mitochondria. Having less mitochondria, they lose the capacity of burning lipids. Using these phenolics, the researchers found that this impact of macrophages on the fat cells was completely blocked.
The fat cells maintained their function. "The compounds we tested were able to inhibit inflammation in the macrophage,” says Elvira Gonzalez de Mejia, professor of food science in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at U of I, and co-author of the study. “That means inhibiting many markers that produce inflammation to the adipocytes. Those were blocked. Coming to the adipocytes themselves, we saw inhibition of different markers related to inflammation as well. Absorption of glucose was improved because the glucose transporters were present. And this went back and forth. Now we know that in the presence of these compounds we can reduce inflammation, reduce adipogenesis, and decrease the 'loop' that helps the two types of cells grow and develop bad compounds that will negatively affect the whole system. This material from coffee beans is interesting mainly because of its composition. It's been shown to be non-toxic. And these phenolics have a very high anti-oxidant capacity."
Can Drinking Coffee Reduce Risk Of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s?
A study from the Krembil Brain Institute suggests there could be more to that morning coffee than just a simple boost in energy and attention. By drinking coffee, you are also protected against development of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
Dr. Donald Weaver, co-director of the Krembil Brain Institute, confirmed that coffee consumption seems to have a sort of connection with the decrease of developing Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. The investigation from the brain institute was seriously trying to confirm which compounds are involved and how they may have an impact on these age-related cognitive declines. The team investigated three types of coffee - decaffeinated dark roast, light roast and dark roast. The caffeinated and de-caffeinated dark roast coffees had identical potencies in the initial experimental tests which showed that the protective effects and potencies could never be due to caffeine.
Dr. Ross identified compounds known as phenylindanes, which occur as a result of the roasting process coffee beans go through. This is the only compound investigated in this study as it inhibits and, in some cases, prevents tau and beta amyloid - protein fragments responsible for Parkinson’s’ and Alzheimer’s disease. Phenylindanes can be referred to as dual-inhibitors. Due to the roasting process - which makes higher quantities of phenylindanes - dark roasted coffee seems to be better than light roasted coffee.
This study was the first time anyone investigated how phenylindanes interacted with the proteins responsible for Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s and that led to trying to investigate how beneficial this compound is as well as its ability to cross the blood-brain barrier and the blood stream. This study proves a lot by taking epidemiological evidence and refining it, demonstrating that there are compounds within coffee that are very beneficial to warding off cognitive declines. From the perspective of the scientists in this study, these findings have the potential of reaching far more than science could have imagined possible. But to think and suggest that coffee is a cure for the diseases mentioned is absolutely incorrect at the moment.
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Lisa S. Jones is a certified nurse, nutritionist, fitness coach and health expert. Her training credentials include a B.Sc. in Nursing from California State University in 2013 and Youth Nutrition Specialist Certification from the American Fitness Professionals and Associates in 2015. In 2017, she also received Holistic Nutrition Certification from the American Fitness Professionals and Associates.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.