Kola nuts were traditionally consumed because they “cleared the mind”. By stimulating heart rate and increasing circulation, kola nuts are able to boost oxygenation to certain essential parts of the body, including the skin , organs, and even the brain. This is why kola nuts are sometimes referred to as cognitive boosters , as increased levels of oxygen in the brain have been connected with higher levels of cognition and concentration . This can also promote healing of wounds and cellular repair through the increased flow of oxygen and nutrients.
For thousands of years, kola nuts have been chewed or consumed by indigenous cultures in Africa both in ceremonies and in the treatment of digestive problems. The active ingredients of the kola nut are able to improve digestion and nutrient uptake, while also reducing constipation , bloating, cramping, and other, more serious, gastrointestinal issues.
Prevents Prostate Cancer
Although research is still in its early stages and is still a matter of debate in some circles, some of the phytoestrogens and phytoandrogens found in kola nuts are able to stimulate apoptosis in prostate cancer cells. This line of study is relatively new, but applications for other types of cancerous cells are also being explored.
Boosts the Immune System
The roots, stem, and leaves of the kola tree have volatile compounds that can prevent certain bacterial infections in the human body. These bacterial infections include those responsible for causing a wide range of respiratory illnesses like bronchitis , meningitis , and tuberculosis . Kola nut extracts are available in most health stores, but the nuts themselves have not been directly connected to this medicinal benefit.
Although caffeine has long been known as an appetite suppressant to a certain degree, kola nut extracts have also been connected with increased fat-burning in the body, possibly due to the positive impact on metabolism that these nuts can have. This can be an ideal option for those people who are trying to lose weight or improve the quality of their diet.
Word of Caution: The significant level of caffeine found in kola nut extracts and supplements can be a risk for those who already suffer from high blood pressure or a sensitivity to caffeine. Its side effects include shaky hands, upset stomach, and insomnia , as caffeine is a powerful stimulant. Consult a medical professional before a kola nut addition to your dietary regimen.