Can you eat coffee beans? How does it taste like?

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Can you eat coffee beansRecently on a trip to a coffee roaster, I was mesmerized by the different types of coffee beans and roasting methods. Apart from the distinctive aroma, those little beans with unique shape strive my curiosity in so many levels. I asked, I learned and now will share with you information about coffee beans, whether or not you can eat them, possible side effects, and so much more.

Can you eat coffee beans?

Have you ever went into a coffee shop, see some coffee beans on display and wonder if we can eat them. If that is what you wonder, then the answer is yes, you can eat coffee beans. Coffee beans come from the coffee fruit or often refer as coffee cherries. It may not be a good idea to eat raw coffee beans because of its grassiness and hardness. Roasted coffee beans taste nicer and can be easier to chew. 

Coffee beans are safe to eat but should stay within a moderate amount. Each person’s caffeine intake level is different, so the number of coffee beans you can eat will differ as well. Remember, coffee beans are much more concentrated than your regular cup of coffee. So excess consumption may lead to unpleasant side effects. 

Does eating coffee beans give you caffeine?

Coffee beans not only give you caffeine, but the caffeine level is also higher than a cup of coffee. Imagine it as the concentrated, not diluted version of coffee. Just eight coffee beans provide you an equal amount of caffeine with one cup of Joe. And the human body generally absorbs caffeine quicker from coffee beans than coffee in liquid form. 

An average size Arabica bean has 6 milligrams of caffeine, while one Robusta bean has about 10 milligrams of caffeine. So it is clear to see that the amount of caffeine varies depend significantly on the type of coffee beans. Another factor is the roasting process from different manufacturers that can also affect coffee beans’ caffeine content. 

How many coffee beans can you eat?

The exact amount of coffee beans you can eat depending on some factors like your body type, caffeine absorption level, whether or not you have any health issues that need to take into consideration. So it is not the same for everyone. Generally speaking, you can remember that eating Eight coffee beans provides you the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee. The caffeine content also varies from different types of coffee beans, as discussed above. So it is good to be mindful of the amount you eat, especially if you experience any discomfort.

How is roasted coffee beans taste like?

Roasted coffee beans taste a bit bitter with an earthy flavor. Some coffee beans, like Arabica, can have a subtle fruity sweet flavor. In general, coffee beans have a strong taste and are not for everyone. If you visit a coffee plantation or roaster, they usually give you a sample of different coffee beans to try. You can choose the one you like most and buy some home. 

Some manufacturers developed and introduced chocolate covered roasted coffee beans or energy bars with nuts, dried fruit, and roasted coffee beans. That way, eating coffee beans become much more enjoyable. Take note that chocolate covered coffee beans have higher caffeine, sugar, and fat content. Just like coffee beans, they should only be consumed in moderation. 

Does Eating Coffee Beans Help You Lose Weight?

Eating coffee beans can minimize obesity due to multiple reasons. They have compounds like chlorogenic acids that lower blood pressure or reduce weight. Green forms of coffee beans that are raw or unroasted contain a significant amount of chlorogenic acids that are beneficial in the burning of stubborn fats.

Light roasted also contains these anti-oxidants, but the increasing levels from medium to dark do not include this anti-oxidant. But the pure green form has the ability of the body to burn the fats by letting go of the fat-burning enzymes.

Is there any possible side effect of eating coffee beans?

Coffee beans have their health benefits as well as side effects. They contain substances like caffeine and catechols, known to increase the production of stomach acid in our body. These substances are also in higher amounts in coffee beans compared to liquid coffee. Therefore, eating coffee beans can lead to stomach discomfort, bloating, or heartburn. 

Coffee beans also contain a high level of cafestol and kahweol. These compounds contribute to the formation of “bad” cholesterol (LDL – low-density lipoprotein.) They can affect the body’s ability to metabolize and regulate cholesterol and may lead to a higher risk of heart disease.

On average, a healthy adult can consume up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day. For pregnant women or people with cardiovascular and other health issues, the amount of safe caffeine intake would be lower. Because of the amount of caffeine, eating coffee beans can lead to insomnia, muscle tremors, headache, nausea, or anxiety (Source: Mayo Clinic). So it is better to consult with your doctor if you have any of those symptoms. You either need to quit coffee or cut back on your daily caffeine intake. 

In Summary

Coffee beans are safe to eat. Just like a cup of coffee, it is a good source of antioxidants and can help keep you energized. However, you need to make sure eating roasted coffee beans only in a moderate amount, avoid excess and over-eat. Because they do have some side effects and, in some cases, can lead to several health issues. Especially for people who are sensitive to caffeine, eating coffee beans may not be a good idea. 

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