Can Coffee Cause Weight Gain?

A new study finds a link between drinking coffee and weight gain. Dang it

Guess this means we'll be holding off on the daily cups of coffee from now on: A new study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry has found that too much coffee can increase weight gain and fat cell retention.

Researchers at the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research and the University of Western Australia's School of Medicine and Pharmacology examined a compound called chlorogenic acid (CGA), found in coffee.

Researchers were hoping that CGAs would specifically increase insulin sensitivity, reduce blood pressure, and decrease body fat thanks to previous research showing that coffee reduced the risk of type-2 diabetes. Unfortunately, the study did just the opposite.

Researchers fed CGAs to obese lab mice that were put on a high-fat diet for 12 weeks; the animals were fed enough CGAs to account for six cups of coffee a day.

Instead of losing weight, however, the mice gained weight; the results were either the same as feeding mice regular food, or worse. The CGAs "had no beneficial effect on their blood sugar levels and also, a little bit more worrying, the mice on this coffee compound tended to accumulate fat in their liver," University of Western Australia's Kevin Croft told The Age.

So the results? Assistant professor Vance Matthews says that three to four cups a day does still decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes, but more than five or six cups a day could reverse the process. In fact, it might actually case an "abnormal retention of fat within cells." No wonder the FDA is worried about crazy kids binging on caffeine.

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