Cola nuts are the seed pods of various evergreen trees that are native to Africa.
The cola nut trees, which grow as tall as 60 feet (18 meters), are most common in Western Africa and the Atlantic coast area of Central Africa.
Cola nuts contain caffeine and act as a stimulant.
In some parts of Africa, cola nuts are given as gifts to visitors entering a home, usually with some formal ceremony. Offering the cola nut is a gesture of friendship and hospitality.
Cola nuts are consumed by breaking them open and into pieces, then chewing the cola nut pieces. They are very hard and the stimulative effect is similar to a strong cup of coffee.
Commercially produced cola drinks were developed in the late 1800s, when chemists and inventors the world over used cola nuts in various drinks and tonics. The most famous of these is Coca-Cola!
Cola nut also contains tannins, phenolics, phlobaphens, kola red, betaine, protein, starch, fat, thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin.
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