How many coffee beans should I eat?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “How many coffee beans should I eat?”, discuss answers to other related questions like how much energy do coffee beans give you and how can you measure coffee beans.

How many coffee beans should I eat?

In general the consumption of eight coffee beans provides a comparable caffeine amount as one cup of coffee. A single coffee bean has approximately 1.9 milligrams of caffeine for Arabica coffee beans and 2.9 milligrams for Robusta coffee beans.

The quantity of coffee beans to include in your diet depends on their caffeine content, as it is essential to avoid exceeding the recommended daily dosage of 45 mg of caffeine per kilogram of body weight.

 It is worth noting that the entire coffee bean contains only a fraction of the caffeine and other chemicals found in a regular cup of filtered and diluted coffee. (1)

The amount of caffeine in coffee beans varies based on size, strain, and duration of roasting. For example, Robusta coffee beans generally contain around twice as much caffeine as Arabica coffee beans.(2)

What is the composition of coffee beans?

To summarize, coffee beans consist of approximately 43% carbohydrates, 7.5-10% proteins, various nitrogenous compounds (including 0.6% – 2.8% caffeine), 10-15% lipids, 25% melanoidins, 3.7-5% minerals, and around 6% organic and inorganic acids and esters. 

During the roasting process, there is no significant loss of caffeine, and its concentration actually increases due to the degradation of other components.

However, it’s worth noting that raw, or green, coffee beans are not particularly enjoyable to eat. They have a bitter and woody flavor and can be challenging to chew. 

On the other hand, roasted coffee beans are slightly softer in texture, making them more palatable. (1-3)

What are the health benefits of coffee beans?

Caffeine, a natural stimulant, exerts its effects on the brain and central nervous system, resulting in various benefits such as increased energy, alertness, improved mood, enhanced memory, and better overall performance. 

Additionally, caffeine has the potential to enhance exercise performance and aid in weight loss by boosting metabolism (3).

Coffee beans, being rich in antioxidants, particularly contain a notable amount of chlorogenic acid. This compound has demonstrated promising effects in reducing the risk of diabetes, combating inflammation, and even exhibiting anti-cancer properties.

The concentration of chlorogenic acid in coffee beans can vary depending on factors such as the variety of the beans and the specific roasting techniques employed. 

During the roasting process, there is a reduction of 50-95 percent in the content of chlorogenic acid. Nevertheless, coffee beans continue to be highly regarded as an excellent source of this beneficial compound. (4, 5)

Do coffee beans have any adverse effects?

Coffee exhibits modest cardiovascular effects, which can include increased heart rate (tachycardia), elevated blood pressure, and occasional irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmia). 

These acute effects are more likely to occur shortly after consuming coffee, particularly in individuals who are more susceptible to them.

While the impact of coffee on the development of hypertension (high blood pressure) is generally minor, it may be more significant in individuals who consume coffee infrequently. 

It is important to note that other factors such as overall lifestyle and individual health conditions play a more substantial role in hypertension.

Moreover, caffeine can slightly hinder calcium absorption in the gastrointestinal tract. To minimize the risk of osteoporosis and fractures, it is advisable to maintain an adequate intake of calcium and vitamin D, especially among elderly adults. 

This can help offset any potential negative effects of caffeine on calcium absorption and ensure optimal bone health.(6)

What can happen if you eat too many coffee beans?

Consuming an excessive amount of coffee beans can result in various negative effects. While the stimulating effect of caffeine provides a temporary boost, it can lead some individuals to experience a subsequent crash. This caffeine crash is characterized by sudden fatigue and sleepiness.

Another potential adverse effect of coffee consumption is anxiety. Caffeine acts by blocking adenosine, a chemical that helps prevent fatigue. However, consuming high quantities of caffeine can trigger feelings of fatigue and nausea.

Caffeine-induced anxiety disorder is a recognized syndrome associated with excessive caffeine intake. Ingesting approximately 1000 mg of caffeine per day can cause symptoms such as nervousness, jitteriness, and nausea. 

It is important to be mindful of one’s caffeine consumption to avoid such negative effects on mental well-being. (2, 7)

Other FAQs about Coffee which you may be interested in.

How long can black coffee sit out?

How much does a cup of coffee cost?


In this brief guide, we answered the question “How many coffee beans should I eat?”, discussed answers to other related questions like how much energy do coffee beans give you and how can you measure coffee beans.


  1. Caroline Woelffel Silva, Keila Rodrigues Zanardi, et. al. Green coffee extract (Coffea canephora) improved the intestinal barrier and slowed colorectal cancer progression and its associated inflammation in rats, PharmaNutrition, 22, 2022.
  2. Farah, Adriana.  Nutritional and health effects of coffee. 10.19103/AS.2017.0022.14. 2018.
  3. Mary Jane Brown, Can You Eat Coffee Beans? All You Need to Know. Them. Healthline Media LLC. 2020
  4. Wei, F., Furihata, K., Hu, F., Miyakawa, T., & Tanokura, M.  Complex mixture analysis of organic compounds in green coffee bean extract by two-dimensional NMR spectroscopy. Magnetic Resonance in Chemistry, 48(11), 857–865. 2010.
  5. Tajik, N., Tajik, M., Mack, I. et al. The potential effects of chlorogenic acid, the main phenolic components in coffee, on health: a comprehensive review of the literature. Eur J Nutr 56, 2215–2244. 2017.
  6. Bae, J.-H., Park, J.-H., Im, S.-S., & Song, D.-K.  Coffee and health. Integrative Medicine Research, 3(4), 189–191. 2014.
  7. Willson, C.  The clinical toxicology of caffeine: A review and case study. Toxicology Reports. 2018.

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