Drinking coffee can lead to weight gain

With coffee against the kilos

A current study on the effect of caffeine consumption on body weight, which was carried out as part of the Obesity Competence Network, indicates that coffee drinkers have a lower body mass index (BMI) and can maintain their weight better in the long term through their caffeine consumption than people who do not Drink coffee.

Show me your cups

Not new, but more topical than ever, is the research into the effects of the consumption of caffeinated beverages, which are among the most popular beverages besides water, especially in the western world and worldwide. In an evaluation of the German Weight Control Register, which is funded as part of the Obesity Competence Network, the positive contribution of caffeine to maintaining weight could once again be determined. The aim of the German Weight Control Register, which was set up for a period of two years, was to find out which factors are important for long-term weight stabilization. Among other things, the different eating habits were examined and the results compared with a general sample of the population.

Less weight gain from coffee consumption

"Significant differences in the consumption of caffeinated beverages were found between the 500 people from the German Weight Control Register and the general population," explains Prof. Dr. med. Martina de Zwaan, Head of the Clinic for Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy at the Hannover Medical School, who played a key role in the study. In the group of people from the German Weight Control Register, significantly higher amounts of coffee and caffeinated drinks were consumed per day compared to the population sample (mean: 3.83 versus 3.35 cups per day; total range: 1-7 cups in both groups). If the mentioned differences are checked with the collected socio-demographic variables, the BMI as well as with the physical activity, the difference in coffee consumption (ratio: 1.18) remains significant.

The participants in the weight control register, who successfully lost weight by at least ten percent over a year and were able to maintain the reduced weight sustainably for at least a year, consumed significantly higher amounts of coffee and caffeinated beverages compared to the general population sample. ²

Lower BMI in coffee drinkers

"So caffeine consumption seems to be negatively associated with long-term weight gain, which means that you gain weight less quickly after losing weight if you consume larger amounts of caffeine," says de Zwaan. There is also evidence that coffee drinkers have a lower BMI. Caffeine, as a central nervous system stimulant, is still considered to be the most active metabolic component of coffee and has been associated with various effects on metabolism: increased energy expenditure, increased heat production and improved fat burning in muscles during physical activity.

Health-promoting effect

The moderate consumption of coffee is not associated with a health risk, but in many cases even shows health-promoting effects. Not only is the caffeine itself crucial for this. Other ingredients of coffee and tea probably play an important role. An intake of around 300 mg of caffeine per day is generally considered to be moderate, with a cup of coffee containing between 40 and 120 mg of caffeine, depending on the type of preparation and type. Studies show preventive effects, even with higher intake quantities.

However, excessive consumption can lead to undesirable effects. There are great individual differences with regard to the tolerance of caffeine. The consumption of caffeinated coffees and teas can support a weight reduction measure positively. However, successful and long-lasting weight loss and maintenance can only be achieved through long-term changes in eating, drinking, exercise and behavioral habits.

Source: Press release of the Competence Network Obesity