Cola vera (Sterculiaceae)
KOLA NUTS, GURRU NUTS
A favourite stimulant of people
in west Africa, South America, and Asia, whole or powdered seeds from the
nut are used to counter tiredness and stimulate the appetite.
Many people throughout west Africa, South America, and Asia chew kola nuts before
meals to promote digestion; regular chewers can be recognized by their red lips and
teeth. An evergreen, the kola tree is native to west Africa but was taken to the West
Indies and South America by slaves and to India and Sri Lanka by traders. The nuts,
which contain the seeds, are white when harvested but turn reddish-brown on drying.
Alkaloids, especially caffeine
and theobromine; tannins; red pigment.
Central nervous system stimulant;
increases urine production; general stimulant.
Used as a tonic to stimulate the appetite and alleviate tiredness.
Tablets, seeds, tincture, powder.