Light roast coffee maintains high levels of Chlorogenic Acid
(And that’s a good thing)
Don’t get hoodwinked by the word “acid”. We’re not talking about acidity levels.
Chlorogenic acids (CGA) are gems of nature. These potent antioxidants have been scientifically proven to stabilize blood insulin, reduce blood pressure, and treat inflammation. Besides these physical benefits, CGA helps improve your cognition and memory and reduces anxiety levels.
Many fruits and veggies contain chlorogenic acids: apples, pears, eggplant, tomatoes, and strawberries. But the highest concentration can be found in our beloved coffee beans. Up to 12% of the green bean’s mass is pure CGA.
When exposed to high temperatures, CGAs become volatile. In fact, it’s one of the first compounds vanishing into thin air during coffee roasting. So the longer you expose the beans to heat, the less CGA the coffee will contain.
Light roast coffee has lower levels of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs), along with acrylamide, are the two prime culprits behind the occurrence of cataracts, kidney and liver damage, and sometimes even DNA mutations, like cancer.
PAHs are a by-product of pyrolysis—the chemical decomposition that occurs when organic materials are exposed to heat.
Dark roasting places coffee beans under high temperatures for prolonged times, increasing the risk of these ugly components forming inside the coffee bean. All the more reason you should keep your coffee roast the same way you keep your spirit: light.