Is it caffeine or chlorogenic acid the ingredients of coffee stimulating the stomach?

If it's chlorogenic acid, do you have coffee without chlorogenic acid? Or how to choose coffee with less chlorogenic acid?

In short, love the taste of coffee, but wouldn't the reaction on the body, that is, no diarrhea, frequent urination nor excitement.

4 Answers 4


I personally couldn't taste any difference between decaf and regular coffee but depends on the brand. According to some resources is decaf the biggest source of antioxidants in the western diet and it has positive impact on health if you drink 2-3 cups per day. From my personal experience, you can drink probably as much decaf as you want since it doesn't have any negative side effects, regarding regular coffee you might get breath problems and high blood pressure if you drink too much. There are lot of good brands of decaf where you don't taste any difference between it and regular coffee.






I have read that actually decafs have caffeine but way less than regulars. So there could be no reactions at all. Espresso decaffeinated is a very good solution since it has a nice taste & better quality effects on body than instant ones for example. Whether drinking regular coffee or not, make sure you drink enough water, it helps.

  • 1
    Please elaborate on your argument. You make quite a few claims, but they lack backing up. Adding some references from well-established sources goes a long way.
    – JJJ
    Sep 7, 2019 at 18:38

I am neither a doctor nor a chemist.
The following statements rely heavily on the German Wikipedia article on chlorogenic acid and some other sources that are typically considered trustworthy (e.g. PubChem and others citing studies.
Individual reactions may vary.

So we have two suspects that may or may not be responsible for stimulating your digestive system.

Chlorogenic acid sounds like a good candidate for stomach issues (being an acid), but in animal testings it actually helped against ulcers and there are no indicators of other plants containing chlorogenic acid causing problems.
High contents in coffee can be tasted and the content is significantly influenced by the roasting method, slow roasting at temperatures around 200C will break it down, which will additionally make the coffee taste milder. I suspect that the perceived flavor contributes to the ascribed properties that are sometimes mentioned on more popular (non-scientific) websites. But I assume that it’s not the chlorogenic acid per se, but the general roasting method and bean quality that matters here.

Caffeine on the other hand is a proven stimulant, which affects the nervous system - including the peristaltic movement of the colon, causing the known effect of urgent bathroom trips up to diarrhea. It’s also an - albeit weak - diuretic, resulting in frequent urination. The symptoms you describe in your question are classic caffeine effects. If you are suffering, the dose is too high for you to stomach (pun intended). You can develop a tolerance (we have some Q/As on the topic here on the site), but reducing the dose or skipping the caffeine is the logical way of avoiding the effects.

So my conclusion: If you want a “mostly harmless” drink, go for decaf and don’t worry too much about chlorogenic acid. If you want a mild coffee and are ok with the caffeine effects, go for slow-roasted - which I would generally recommend. Finding a coffee with both properties may be a good reason to get familiar with your local roaster instead of buying at the supermarket.


Decaf coffee may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. It may also reduce the risk of premature death.Decaf coffee may protect against age-related mental decline. It may also reduce the risk of diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.Decaf coffee causes significantly less acid re flux than regular coffee. Drinking more than two cups a day may also reduce the risk of rectal cancer.

  • 5
    Can you add sources for the claims?
    – Stephie
    Nov 14, 2018 at 11:48

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