The benefits of coffee don’t stop at drinking that dark, delicious beverage. The byproducts collected in making coffee might possess useful substances. Even if the study is still in its initial stages, its results indicate that silverskin and husks discarded by coffee manufacturers may have health and environmental benefits.
To bring out the coffee bean, coffee growers should first peel off the husk, which is the hard outer covering. They also remove the silverskin, which is the thin layer that protects the seed. In a normal harvest, growers just leave the husks out there in the field. The discarded materials are rich in chlorogenic acid, caffeine, and tannins, which are known to be dangerous to the environment.
Coffee producers end up with approximately 0.68 tons of coffee waste, which manufactures a ton of fresh coffee. This makes it necessary to reuse coffee byproducts. Researchers from the University of Illinois (Urbana-Champagne) are trying to find out if these coffee byproducts have useful bioactive properties.
Making Medicine from Waste
Coffee husk and silverskin extracts help scientists understand of these discarded components are capable of reducing several of obesity’s biochemical hallmarks. Scientists also tested the specific phenolic compounds taken from coffee silverskins. The results of this study were published recently in the journal names Food and Chemical Toxicology.
According to the study’s co-author, Professor Elvira Gonzales de Mejia, their interest in the coffee byproducts was sparked by their non-toxic composition. They were also rich in antioxidants.
Inflammation Associated with Obesity
The study’s authors believe that inflammation can be treated, it can also be possible to block the pathways of inflammation, obesity, and insulin resistance. This generally reduces the level of damage to the body.
With the cultured cells they had, they started to examine the effects of the extracted coffee components on adipogenesis, mitochondrial dysfunction, obesity-related inflammation, and insulin resistance.
Adipogenesis is the creation of fat or adipose cells. The scientists were able to culture macrophages and fat cells together to imitate the interactions between these types of cells in real life. Based on the words of the lead author of the study Miguel Rebollo-Hernanz, they have assessed five pure phenolics and two extracts. They observed that the given phenolics (gallic acid and protocatechuic acid) had the ability to block the accumulation of fat in fat cells with lipolysis stimulation and by producing beige or brownish adipocytes.
What is known as brown fat contains huge numbers of mitochondria. It burns fat quickly. In the study, the phenolics decreased the secretion of factors causing inflammation and reduce oxidative stress.
It is worth investing time in using the discarded coffee byproducts in improving health because it also helps the environment. When the coffee growers understand the value of these byproducts, they will see and treat them as valuable ingredients. To make this endeavor sustainable in the future, there has to be effective collaboration among the public sector, academic institutions, and the coffee industry