A small Pennsylvania study suggests that unroasted or green coffee bean extract can promote weight loss.

Sixteen overweight or obese people between the ages of 22 and 26 alternated between taking capsules of the green coffee bean extract or a placebo for 22 weeks.

University of Scranton researchers said the study participants’ eating habits and exercise regimens did not change during the study.

During the course of the study, participants lost an average of 17 pounds with an average drop of 16 per cent in body fat.

The research was presented on Tuesday at a American Chemical Society meeting in San Diego, Calif., and is on the society’s website.