Chlorogenic acid (C16H18O9) is an antioxidant and phenolic compound, which, in ways that are not yet fully clear, can modulate and/or suppress the immune response. The acid is a natural compound found in a wide array of plants. It is a polyphenol that is an important intermediary compound in plant metabolism, and also has a broad range of antimicrobial properties. This chemical has also been found to inhibit the release of glucose into the blood, and appears to help people lose weight.
Many of the polyphenols function as antioxidants. Chlorogenic acid is able to neutralize several classes of carcinogenic compounds before they can damage DNA, thus preventing mutations from occurring and causing cancer. It also inhibits oxidation of the low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or bad cholesterol. Such oxidation can damage the arteries and cause atherosclerosis. Limiting this is thought to help prevent cardiovascular disease.
The primary dietary sources of chlorogenic acid are coffee and tea1, both caffeinated and decaffeinated. Green coffee beans typically contain 6-7% of this component (range: 4-10%); roasted coffee beans contain somewhat less, as the roasting transforms this acid into other molecules, which may still retain the same functions as chlorogenic acid.
A number of population studies identified coffee drinkers, who drank at least five cups a day, as being substantially less likely to get Type 2 diabetes. Further research has suggested the reason for this as being the effects of chlorogenic acid on glucose metabolism. Glucose is stored in the liver in a polysaccharide called glycogen, which is a long, branched chain of insoluble glucose molecules. In a process known as glycogenolysis, the enzyme glucose-6-phosphatase releases free glucose into the bloodstream, where it circulates to various organs.
The quantity of this substance in most plants is miniscule. However, a few types of plants accumulate chlorogenic acid(CAS No. 327-97-9), especially in the skin, in quantities sufficient to have a physiological effect on individuals who consume them. If glycogenolysis is inhibited, the body gets its energy from fat cells. This reduces blood glucose levels, helping to reduce the symptoms of diabetes. Also, reducing the number of fat stores should help in losing weight.
While one must always be cautious when using weight loss supplements, there is some data — from the manufacturer — to suggest that this product does result in weight loss. he biological effects of chlorogenic acid have led to its being marketed for weight reduction in Europe. The substance is obtained from green coffee and sold as Svetol, which is typically included as an ingredient in mints, chewing gum, and coffee.