• Antioxidant activity;
  • Body weight loss;
  • Coffee;
  • Superoxide dismutase;
  • Vitamin E


Recent results from prospective cohort studies have shown that moderate coffee consumption is associated with a reduced risk for diabetes mellitus type II or Alzheimer's disease. Since reactive oxygen species (ROS) are believed to be involved in the pathogenesis of these diseases, antioxidants in coffee might contribute to this risk reduction. We aimed at elucidating whether a dark roast coffee beverage (CB) rich in N-methylpyridinium ions (NMP: 785 μmol/L) and low in chlorogenic acids (CGA: 523 μmol/L) has stronger antioxidant effects on human erythrocytes than a CB prepared from a light roast with opposite proportions (CGA: 4538 μmol/L; NMP: 56 μmol/L). Following a 2-wk wash out period, 500 mL of the respective CB was administered to 30 subjects daily for 4-wk. Blood and spot urine samples were collected at the beginning and at the end of each intervention. Intake of the dark roast CB most effectively improved the antioxidant status of erythrocytes: superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase activity decreased by 5.8 and 15%, respectively, whereas tocopherol and total glutathione concentrations increased by 41 and 14%, respectively. Furthermore, administration of the NMP-rich CB led to a significant body weight reduction in pre-obese subjects, whereas the CGA-rich CB did not.