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- 02-07-2006 12:32 AM #1
Chocolate covered espresso beans -- how much caffeine?
Does anyone have any idea how much caffeine is in chocolate covered espresso beans? I'd assume more than (liquid) coffee since one consumes the bean itself.
- 02-07-2006 03:57 AM #2
You actually get more caffeine from the chocolate...it takes and average of 32 espresso beans to make a single espresso"Wine is for aging, not coffee."
Ken Hutchinson, Starsky and Hutch
- 02-07-2006 12:15 PM #3
Thanks for replying, Topher.
That would make sense. So I assume actually chewing and eating espresso beans doesn't mean you're getting more caffeine than grounding and making a drink from it?
- 02-12-2006 04:12 PM #4
eating vs. drinking
I'm going to go out on a limb and reply to the quote about getting more caffeine by eating the beans.
I'm no gastro-intestinal specialist, but if I were to give some input for thought... I'd say that you would probably get less caffeine if you actually ate the bean. Here's my theory:
If you grind up the bean and then brew it, you are exposing a great deal more surface area of the coffee and then passing water through it and extracting the caffeine pretty efficiently into your cup. Then you consume it as liquid which is quickly passed to your bloodstream
If you eat the bean, your teeth could never chew the bean up enough to even come close to the mechanically ground method (much less surface area). Also when you subsequently swallow the beans partially ground/broken big pieces etc., your body would not be able to break down, digest and process the bean fully enough to get enough caffeine into your blood stream like getting it from the liquid example above
- 02-12-2006 04:16 PM #5
That's a smart scientific anaylysis. I never thought of it that way. You're right about the coffee grounds having more surface area and the liquid form having a greater, more immediate effect on the blood.
Thanks for your input!
- 12-30-2007 10:19 AM #6
I see what the guy is saying about the surface area and the brewing process. However, you can only extract so much caffeine out of the bean whether itís ground or not. At the end of the day, the bean itself is the supply of caffeine. Think of sugar in a piece of candy as analogous to caffeine in an espresso bean. You can suck on a piece of candy for a while, but itís not going to give you as much sugar as swallowing the candy whole until the piece of candy totally dissolves in your mouth.
Under this theory, eating one bean would have to put more caffeine in your body then brewing a cup of coffee with one bean ground up in the coffee maker. The only question then is how many beans must be ground up and brewed to equal one bean eaten. Of course, that doesnít speak to how much actually get into your blood stream, but thatís a different question.
I''m going to eat a couple more
- 01-01-2008 02:11 PM #7
I don't know about the scientific basis, but from personal experience, I feel the impact a huge amount more from just eating a few of these vs drinking coffee or espresso. So much so, that my former manager used to bribe me and the rest of our team by providing these on a regular basis. Ah, how I miss working for him!
- 01-01-2008 03:00 PM #8
OK, I am a chemist and here is my take on the question. There is only so much caffiene per bean. If there is 5 milligrams of caffiene/bean and you eat 30 beans or make espresso with 30 beans, the most caffiene you can get is 150 milligrams of caffiene. Caffiene is a very easy to extract compound, it goes into water very readily. This is an assumption, I have not checked it in the lab, that pretty close to 100% of the caffiene is received into the body with either approach. The difference lies in the metabolism of the caffiene carrier. A liquid is processed by the body in one fashion and a solid is processed another. I don't believe there would be a difference in the caffiene content, just in the metabolic rate that it is absorbed into the body. As you can tell by body size, two people metabolism food of all sorts differently. That is why two people with different metabolisms can eat the same food and dramatically have different weight gains/loses. Caffiene intake is going to effect different people the same way. You might eat the beans and get a quicker buzz, or you might drink espresso and get a quicker buzz. It is based in your metabolism more than actual caffiene content.
- 01-02-2008 09:56 PM #9
According to Bowes and Church's Food Values of Portions there are 5 mg. of caffeine in a chocolate covered espresso bean.
Espresso has about 100 mg per 1.5 oz serving using a double basket.
There is far more stimulation achieved from 30 chocolate covered espresso beans over 30 coffee beans extracted into espresso due to the presence of additional alkaloids in the chocolate.
Theobromine and theophylline (to a lesser degree) are present in chocolate, according to studies the body's reaction to the small amount of caffeine in chocolate are amplified by the other two alkaloids.
There are about 28 mg. of caffeine in 1.5 oz of chocolate and about 250 mg of theobromine.
When larger amounts of caffeine are joined with the two theo alkaloids the resulting effect is an overall greater stimulation.
All three alkaloids are quite similar in chemical composition:
Science aside, I can drink two cups with breakfast, go and cup coffee all morning, drink two espressos and not get jittery. A handful of chocolate covered espresso beans makes me sweat and shake.
- 04-28-2011 05:47 PM #10
Re: Digesting Espresso, eat v. Drink
I get your reasoning, and it is good logic. It's kind of stupid that I'm debating this since I'm no GI specialist either, but I'll do some research in a minute. I have done a fair of pas personal research into it, but...
Yes, liquid will extract a lot of the caffeine into the drink, and because it is a liquid, it would make sense that it would be absorbed quicker. Yes, chewing it wouldn't release near as much caffeine in your mouth. But saliva is a whole lot more effective at breaking down food that water is. You can compare with putting food in your mouth and water sometime, if you can resist eating it
Again, ignorant reasoning, but I believe active ingredients (such as caffeine) get absorbed into the bloodstream much quicker when absorbed in the mouth (if I remember right. Kind of like smoking/snorting is 10x quicker than eating). Liquids would get to the bloodstream quicker through the mouth, and I'm assuming in the digestive tract as well. However, the bean would be broken down just as effectively if not more so by the digestive tract. Think about all the tough food it breaks down on a regular basis. Since none of the bean is thrown away, as it is done when drip coffee is made, and no caffeine goes with it, eating the bean may potentially deliver a higher percentage of the caffeine. However, all this is from limited knowledge off the top of my head, so I'll be back!
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