African Kola Nut Fruit | An Ancient Superfood

Kola nut caffeine and theobromine molecules | Oji Kola

Kola nut fruit (Cola acuminata), is packed with caffeine and theobromine, and powerful antioxidants for a clear and focused energy boost. Due to its impressive stimulating effects, kola has been used for thousands of years in West Africa. The caffeine in kola makes for a strong neurological stimulant that can combat work fatigue, suppress hunger and uplift spirits. The fruit and its extracts have been used throughout history in treating respiratory conditions such as asthma and whooping cough thanks to the Theobromine which opens the blood vessels in the lungs for greater circulation of oxygen. It's also believed to aid in weight loss, digestion, and to boost metabolic rate.

Nigerian Kola Nut Cola Acuminata

Kola nut grows as a fruit in shelled pods, sprouting from the towering Mallow tree, often over 60 feet high and indigenous to the tropical rain forests of West Africa. The trees and their fruit can also be found in pockets of Brazil and the West Indies, where they were transferred from West Africa by enslaved peoples during the transatlantic slave trade in the late 1500's. Due to Kola's versatility, it has been used as a cultural symbol, medicine, food, and flavoring around the world for centuries.

As a symbol, kola nut has been widely used by all ethnic groups in Nigeria, particularly amongst the Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa tribes. In Nigeria they say, "kola nut is produced in the West by the Yoruba, consumed in the North by the Hausa and worshiped in the East by the Igbo."

Nigerian Kola Nut Cola Acuminata

The trusted ingredient is used to grace social rituals of hospitality as welcome offerings to guests; as sacred offerings in religious proceedings and as a medium to channeling the ancestors. Its use is extremely common in gatherings for important life events such as weddings, naming ceremonies, funerals and memorials.

Its history is less foreign than you think, too. Throughout the late 1700's and early 1800's kola was used in Europe and America in tonics to relieve end of day work fatigue. Then, in the late 1880's kola became a household staple in the United States when John Pemberton used it as the main ingredient in the original formula for Coca-Cola. John was badly injured fighting for the Confederacy during the civil war and became addicted to morphine as a result. Recognizing his addiction he set out in search of a better alternative, finding the West African kola nut (Cola acuminata) and the South American coca leaf. Kola has since been replaced with artificial flavorings in most soft drinks, its origins in West Africa lost.

Oji Kola is putting respect back on kola's name by building better kola supply chains that focus on our smallholder farmer partners, who grow the highest quality kola in the world. This is real kola, the way it was intended. 

See what all the kola nut hype is about, order Oji Kola today!