Tag Archives: Nigeria

Arbutus andrachne

Botanical Name: Arbutus andrachne
Family: Ericaceae
Genus: Arbutus
Species: A. andrachne
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Ericales

Common Names:Greek Strawberry Tree or Grecian StrawberryTree

Habitat: Arbutus andrachne is native to the Mediterranean region, the Middle East, and southwestern Asia. Evergreen scrub and rocky slopes on limestone, serpentine and igneous rocks in areas that are very dry in summer

Description:
Arbutus andrachne is an evergreen Tree growing to 6 m (19ft) by 6 m (19ft) at a slow rate. Arbutus andrachne can reach a height of about 12 meters. The smooth bark is exfoliating during the summer, leaving a layer with a pistachio green color, which changes gradually to a beautiful orange brown. The flowers bloom in Spring and are white or yellowish green. Its fruits ripen in Autumn. The fruit is about 15mm in diameter. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.The plant is self-fertile....CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

Cultivation: 
Requires a nutrient-rich well-drained moisture-retentive soil in a sunny position with shelter from cold drying winds, especially when young[200]. Requires a lime-free soil according to some reports[1, 134], but it thrives on a limy soil according to other reports[11, 182, 200]. Established plants are drought tolerant. Plants are hardy to about -15°c[184]. The flowers are sweetly scented[245]. Dislikes being transplanted, it should be placed in its final position whilst young, giving some protection in its first winter outdoors[11, 134]. Plants are very slow growing. Most plants cultivated under this name are in fact A. x andrachnoides ‘Serratula'[200].
Propagation :
Seed – best surface sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe. Stored seed should be soaked for 5 – 6 days in warm water and then surface sown in a shady position in a greenhouse. Do not allow the compost to become dry. 6 weeks cold stratification helps. The seed usually germinates well in 2 – 3 months at 20°c. Seedlings are prone to damp off, they are best transplanted to individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and should be kept well ventilated. Grow them on in a greenhouse for their first winter and then plant out in late spring after the last expected frosts. Basal cuttings in late winter. Cuttings of mature wood of the current season’s growth, November/December in a frame. Poor percentage. Layering of young wood – can take 2 years

Edible Uses:
Edible Parts: Fruit.
Fruit – raw or cooked. A luscious, juicy texture with a sweet but insipid flavour. Many people do not like eating more than a few of the raw fruits. They make a good cooked fruit in preserves etc.

Medicinal Uses:
The bark of this evergreen tree peels off annually and can be used as a decoction for sore throats as a gargle and the infusion can be used as a tisane for the same ailment. An infusion of the leaves may be used for a cold, and the berries themselves are said to aid digestion and improve the appetite.
This tree was described by Thomas Wright in his book, Early Travels in Palestine, published in 1845. He has this description of what is believed to be the Greek strawberry tree.

A remedy for eczema associated with gouty and rheumatic symptoms. Arthritis; especially larger joints. Urine rendered more clear. Lumbago. Symptoms shift from skin to joints. Vesical symptoms.

Arbutus Andrachne treatment for Relationship ailments: Arbutin; Ledum; Bryonia; Kalmia.

Arbutus Andrachne treatment for Dose ailments: Tincture, to third potency.

Other Uses :
Hedge; Hedge; Wood.

Plants can be grown as a hedge, they are tolerant of some trimming. Wood – hard, close-grained.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.webhomeopath.com/homeopathy/homeopathic-remedies/homeopathy-remedy-Arbutus_Andrachne.html
http://herbs-treatandtaste.blogspot.in/2012/06/greek-strawberry-tree-information-and.html
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Arbutus+andrachne
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arbutus_andrachne

Kola Nuts

Botanical Name: Kola vera
Family:   Malvaceae
Genus :  Kola
Species:   K.vera
Kingdom :  Plantae
Order:   Malvales

Synonyms: Cola acuminata. Sterculia acuminata. Kola Seeds. Gurru Nuts. Bissy Nuts. Cola Seeds. Guru Nut.

Common NameKola Nuts

Parts Used: The seeds are the most commonly used parts of the kola nut tree for its commercial and medicinal purposes.
Habitat: Kola nut is native to W. Africa; this herb is cultivated extensively in the tropics particularly Nigeria, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Indonesia and S. America. Though it is a native of tropical West Africa, but has been spread so much by man that today it is cultivated from Senegal to Nigeria.

Originally a tree of tropical rainforest, it needs a hot humid climate but can withstand a dry season on sites with a high ground water level. It may be cultivated in drier areas where ground water is available. C. nitida is a shade bearer but develops a better spreading crown which yields more fruits in open places. Though it is a lowland forest tree it has been found at altitudes over 300 m on deep rich soils under heavy and evenly distributed rainfall.

Description:
The Kola nut is a caffeine-containing nut of evergreen trees of the genus Cola, primarily of the species Cola acuminata and Cola nitida. Cola acuminata, an evergreen tree about 20 metres in height, has long, ovoid leaves pointed at both the ends with a leathery texture. The trees have yellow flowers with purple spots, and star-shaped fruit. Inside the fruit, about a dozen round or square seeds develop in a white seed-shell. The nut’s aroma is sweet and rose-like. The first taste is bitter, but it sweetens upon chewing. The nut can be boiled to extract the cola. This tree reaches 25 meters in height and is propagated through seeds. C. nitida and C. acuminata can easily be interchanged with other Cola species...CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

Kola nuts comprise about 2% caffeine, as well as containing kolanin and theobromine. All three chemicals function as stimulants

Cultivation:   Ripe fruits harvested before the follicles split open, the seeds or nuts are extracted from the follicles and the white aril removed after 5 days of fermentation. Yields of 300 nuts per tree are considered good. Nuts for planting are the mature ones that have undergone after-ripening. C. nitida can also be propagated by cuttings or aerial layering. The seedl
ings are sometimes raised in pots or in polythene bags before planting out. Field spacing of 10 x 10 m is common. Early weeding is essential and interplanting with a shade tree recommended. Initial growth is slow, reaching only 3 m in 4 years. Slashing the trunk of cola trees before the season of main flowering is believed to induce heavy bearing. Trees start flowering at 4-5 years and very few fruits can be obtained, but full production occurs in 20 years. Cola as an intercrop flowers later than the normal 4-5 years. Seed generally have recalcitrant storage behaviour. Seed can be retained for 1 year or more without loss in viability with seeds wrapped in banana leaves in a basket, or with polythene bags, at room temperature. Nuts may be thus stored for several months without spoiling but will require regular changing of the leaves and checking for weevil damage.

Constituents:    The different varieties of nuts give a greater or lesser percentage of caffeine, which is only found in the fresh state. The seeds are said to contain a glucoside, Kolanin, but this substance appears to be a mixture of Kola red and caffeine. The seeds also contain starch, fatty matter, sugar, a fat decomposing enzyme acting on various oils.

Medicinal   Uses: The properties of Kola are the same as caffeine, modified only by the astringents present. Fresh Kola Nuts have stimulant action apart from the caffeine content, but as they appear in European commerce, their action is indistinguishable from that of other caffeine drugs and Kola red is inert. Kola is also a valuable nervine, heart tonic, and a good general tonic.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kola_nut
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/k/kolanu10.html
http://www.findyourfate.com/astrology/plants/trees/kola-nut.html

Cowpea beans (Barboti)

Botanical Name :Vigna unguiculata
Family: Fabaceae
Genus:    Vigna
Species:V. unguiculata
kingdom:K Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Names : Cowpea beans ,Barboti

Southern United States, where they are often called black-eyed peas or field peas. In India, in Tamil it is called K?r?mani, or Thatta Payir, the beans are called thatta kaai. In Oriya, it is called jhudunga, in Bengali, it is called barboti kolai or barboti, in Kannada, it is called Alasande, in Telugu, it is called Alasandalu , Bobbarlu. In Hindi, it is called lobhia or bura (when used as a string bean). In Gujarati, these are called chola or chowla. In Marathi, these are called chawali or chavali. It is an integral part of the cuisine in the southern region of India.

Habitat :Cowpeas are one of the most important food legume crops in the semiarid tropics covering Asia, Africa, southern Europe and Central and South America.

Description:
Cowpea beans is an annual an  herb, erect or suberect, spreading, to 80 cm or more tall, glabrous, taproot stout with laterals near soil surface, roots with large nodules, stems usually procumbent, often tinged with purple, first leaves above cotyledons are simple and opposite, subsequent trifoliolate leaves are alternate, the terminal leaflet often bigger and longer than the two asymmetrical laterals, petiole, stout, grooved, 5–15 cm long; leaflets ovoid-rhombic, entire or slightly lobed, apex acute, 6.5–16 cm long, 4–11 cm wide, lateral leaflets oblique; inflorescence axillary, 2–4-flowered, crowded, near tips on short curved peduncles 2.5–15 cm long; calyx campanulate with triangular teeth, the upper 2 teeth connate and longer than rest; corona dull white, yellow, or violet with standard 2–3 cm in diameter, keel truncate; stamens diadelphous, the anthers uniform; pods curved, straight or coiled; seeds 2–12 mm long, globular to reniform, smooth or wrinkled, red, black, brown, green buff or white, as dominant color; full colored, spotted, marbled, speckled, eyed, or blotched; (5–30 g/100 seeds, depending on the cv). Germination phanerocotylar. Fl. early summer. Fr. mid- and late summer, depending on the cv sensitivity tp ;pca;photoperiod and tmperature conditions.
click to see the pictures

Cultivation:
Seeds remain viable for several years. Germination is epigeal. Should be planted after danger from frost is past. If seeded for hay or seed, crop should be sown early, but for green manure and pasture purposes, may be seeded late with good results. Rate of seeding varies with method: when planted in rows 10–40 kg/ha, for broadcasting, 90 kg/ha. Cowpeas may be planted in rows, broadcast, or mixed with such other plants as cassava, corn, sorghum, sudangrass, johnsongrass, millets, peanuts, or soybeans. When grown for seed, it is painted in rows, for forage or green manture, broadcast. For hog feed or silage, cowpeas are planted with corn, either at the sime time as or at the last cultivation of corn. In rows, cowpeas are spaced of 5–7.5 cm apart, in rows 75–90 cm apart two or more cultivations are necessary to control weeds. Ordinary corn cultivator equipment is satisfactory, and cultivation should stop when flowering begins. In United States, 600–1,000 kg/ha of a 4-8-8 NPK fertilizer may be applied in bands 5 cm below seeds when planting. Cowpeas are usually grown rainfed, rarely irrigated. For weed control, amines of 2-4-D and MCPA are said to be effective as preemergence sprays. Trifluralin at 0.56–1.12 kg/ha just before sowing is said to give good control. Cowpeas respond slightly to K application up to 45 kg/ha. Calcium ions in the soil aid inoculation. In the United States, application of ca. 1 MT of lime is recommended and favors seed increase more than hay increase. Superphosphate recommendations are 112–224 kg/ha in the United States. Sulfur can limit seed production and/or protein synthesis. Molybdenum recommendations are 20–50 g/ha, and Mn, Cu, Zn, and B are essential, in very small quantities, for effective nodulation and seed yield increases. The cowpea symbiosis has genetic potential for large seed yields: cowpea Rhizobium associations should require only nominal amounts of fertilizer N, if any.

Harvesting:
Early maturing cvs produce pods in 50 days, seed in 90 days, late cvs mature seed in 240 days. Crop ripens unevenly and proper Stage for harvesting is difficult to determine. Usually flowers and green and ripe pods occur on vines at same time. Crop is cut for seed when one-half to two-thirds of pods are ripe. May be harvested by hand, with a special harvester or by self-rake reapers. For hay, crop cut when most pods are fully developed, and first ones have ripened. If cut too early, hay is difficult to cure; if cut too late, stems are long and woody and seed and leaves shatter badly. Ordinary mowing machine is used for harvesting cowpeas.

Edible Uses:
Cultivated for the seeds (shelled green or dried), the pods and/or leaves that are consumed as green vegetables or for pasturage, hay, ensilage, and green manure. The tendency of indeterminate cvs to ripen fruits over a long time makes them more amenable to subsistence than to commercial farming. However, erect and determinate cvs, more suited to monocultural production systems, are now available. If ctut back, many cvs continue to produce new leaves, that are eaten as a potherb. Leaves may be boiled, drained, sun-dried and then stored for later use. In the United States, green seeds are sometimes roasted like peanuts. The roots are eaten in Sudan and Ethiopia. Scorched seeds are occasionally used as a coffee substitute. Peduncles are retted for fiber in northern Nigeria. Crop used to some extent as pasturage, especially for hogs, and may be used for silage, for which it is usually mixed with corn or sorghum. Crop is very useful as a green manure, and leafy prostrate cvs reduce soil erosion.

In Tamilnadu, India, between the Tamil months of Maasi (February) and Panguni (March), a cake-like dish called kozhukattai (steamed sweet dumplings – also called adai in Kerala) is prepared with cooked and mashed cowpeas mixed with jaggery, ghee, and other ingredients. Thatta payir in sambar and pulikkuzhambu (spicy semisolid gravy in tamarind paste) is a popular dish in Tamil Nadu.

In Sri Lanka, cowpeas are cooked in many different ways, one of which is with coconut milk.

In Turkey, cowpeas can be lightly boiled, covered with olive oil, salt, thyme, and garlic sauce, and eaten as an appetizer. Also, they are cooked with garlic and tomatoes. And they can be eaten in bean salad.

In bengal Cowpea beans or barboti is used as a palatable vrgitable with different vegitable curry.

According to the USDA food database, the leaves of the cowpea plant have the hig
hest percentage of calories from protein among vegetarian foods.

• Gabi-Paayap Instant Baby Food: A nutritious baby food from a blend of gabi powder, roasted paayap grits processed by extrusion cooking, with a 100-gram pack providing 394 kcal and 19.4 g protein.

Kamote-Paayap Weaning / Baby Food: A rootcrop-legume combo of dried kamote cubes and paayap girts containing 376 kcal and 12.5 g of protein per 100 g.

• Rice-Paayap Sesame Powder: A blend of 3/4 cup of roasted rice flour and two tablespoons each of roasted paayap flour and roasted sesame flour, provides 424 Kcal and 14 grams protein per 100 grams.

Medicinal Uses:
Constituents:
Study shows of dried edible seeds : moisture, 6.20-8.92%; protein, 20.5-31.7%; fat 1.14-3.03%; fiver 1.70-4.5%; carbohydrate 56-65.7%, with varying amounts of cyanide, tannin, total oxalate and phytate.

In other folkloric medicinal systems, various parts of the cowpea plants (roots, leaves, and seeds) are used for a variety of medical ailments including dysmenorrhea, epilepsy, headaches, constipation,  chest pains and bilharzia.

Different Studies:
*Report on Flatulence and Abdominal Discomfort on Ingestion: 1989 report on abdominal discomfort associated with ingestion of cowpea and the decreased incidence of side effects with pressure cooking and dehulling.

*Antifungal / Antiviral: Study presents evidence of multiple proteins with antifungal and antiviral potency in cowpea seeds. The two proteins, designated alpha-antifungal and beta-antifunga, were capable of inhibiting HIV reverse transcriptase and one glycohydrolases associated with HIV infection. The proteins also retarted the mycelial growth of a variety of fungi, with the alpha-protein more potent in most cases.

*Protein Source/ Anti-Nutrient Factors : Study suggests cowpea as a valuable protein source with the predicted protein deficit in Southern Africa. Unlike other legumes, VU contain antinutritional factors (ANF) as trypsin inhibitors, tannins and phytates.

*Anti-Inflammatory: Study on the anti – inflammatory activity of Vigna unguiculata seed extract..

* Anti-Bleeding: Rats on boild white rice dite developed symptoms of severe vitamin K deficiency and the addition of autoclaved beans of V. unguiculata in the diet prevented the bleeding syndrome.

* Antifungal / Antibacterial: Results have indicated antifungal and some antibacterial activity by cowpea leaf extracts.

* Lipids / Constituents: Dried edible seeds of V unguiculata and P vulgaris grown in Northern Nigeria were studied for its chemical constituents. Iodine values were higher in vigna. Overall, potassium was the most abundant element in the seeds.16 amino acides were identified. Study highlights the safety and high nutritive values of the studied varieties.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cowpea
http://stuartxchange.com/Paayap.html
https://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/duke_energy/Vigna_unguiculata.html

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Vernonia amygdalina

Botanical Name :Vernonia amygdalina
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Vernonia
Species: V. amygdalina
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Common Names:Ewuro (Ibdan, Nigeria), Etidot (Cross River State of Nigeria),Bitter leaf

African common names include grawa (Amharic), ewuro (Yoruba), etidot (Ibibio), onugbu (Igbo), ityuna (Tiv), oriwo (Edo), chusar-doki (Hausa), muluuza (Luganda), labwori (Acholi), and olusia (Luo).

The genus was named in honour of an English botanist, William Vernon, traveller and plant collector in North America in the 17th century. The specific name means ‘like an almond’—the allusion is not clear.

Habitat : Vernonia amygdalina  grows in the tropical Africa.

Description:
Vernonia amygdalina is a bushy shrub or well-formed tree up to 7 m in height. Bark light grey or brown, rather rough and longitudinally flaking; branches brittle.

The leaves are green with a characteristic odour and a bitter taste   Leaves are lanceolate to oblong; up to 28 x 10 cm, but usually about 10-15 x 4-5 cm. Leathery, medium to dark green, with or without sparse hairs above, with fine, soft, pale hairs below and conspicuous net-veining; apex and base tapering, base always almost symmetric, margin entire or very  finely toothed; petiole usually very short but may be 1-2 cm long.

click to see the pictures.>…..(01).......(1).………….(2)…..

Flower heads thistlelike, small, creamy-white, sometimes slightly touched with mauve, about 10 mm long, grouped in dense heads, axillary and  terminal, forming large flat clusters about 15 cm in diameter but not conspicuous; sweetly scented, especially in the evening. Fruit a small nutlet, with minute glands and bristly hairs on the body and a
long tuft of bristly hairs at the top.

No seeds are produced and the tree has therefore to be distributed through cutting.

Grows under a range of ecological zones in Africa and produces large mass of forage and is drought tolerant (Hutchioson and Dalziel, 1963 cited by Bonsi et al., 1995a). There are about 200 species of Vernonia.

Medicinal Uses:
The leaves may be consumed either as a vegetable (macerated leaves in soups) or aqueous extracts as tonics for various illnesses. Many herbalists and naturopathic doctors recommend aqueous extracts for their patients for emesis, nausea, diabetes, loss of appetite-induced abrosia, dysentery and other gastrointestinal tract problems. Until the last decade or so, there were only anecdotal reports and claims to support the health benefits

In a preliminary clinical trial, a decoction of 25 g fresh leaves of V. amygdalina was 67% effective in creating an adequate clinical response in African patients with mild falciparum malaria. Of these 32% had complete parasite clearance. Unfortunately 71% of subjects had recrudescence (that is, recurrence of symptoms). The treatment was without significant adverse effects.

Other Uses:
Vernonia amygdalina has been observed to be eaten by goats in Central Zone of Delta State, Nigeria. However, in general has there been found, that Vernonia amygdalina have an astringent taste, which affects its intake (Bonsi et al., 1995a). The bitter taste is due to anti-nutritional factors such as alkaloids, saponins, tannins and glycosides (Buttler and Bailey, 1973; Ologunde et al., 1992 cited by Bonsi et al. 1995a; Anonymous, 1999). It has been tried to mix Vernonia with molasses to make it more palatable, but 6.6 % of DM intake had to be added to improve the intake of Vernonia. During the dry periode Dairy farmers from Southern Ethiopia feed boiled Vernonia, since the boiling decreases the content of secondary plant compounds and makes the feed more palatable.

Vernonia amygdalina has also been fed to broilers, where it was able to replace 300 g kg-1 of maize-based diet without affecting feed intake, body weight gain and feed efficiency (Teguia et al., 1993 cited by Bonsi et al., 1995a).

Zoopharmacology:
In the wild, chimpanzees have been observed to ingest the leaves when suffering from parasitic infections

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vernonia_amygdalina
http://projects.nri.org/adappt/docs/Vernonia_amygdalina.pdf
http://www.fao.org/ag/aga/AGAP/frg/Visit/Ida/Vernonia%20amygdalina.htm

Aframomum melegueta

Botanical Name :Aframomum melegueta
Family: Zingiberaceae
Genus: Aframomum
Species: A. melegueta
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Zingiberales

Common Names;Grains of paradise, Melegueta pepper, Alligator pepper, Guinea grains or Guinea pepper
English : Guinea grains, Melegueta pepper, Alligator pepper
French :Graines de paradis, Malaguette, Poivre de Guinée, Maniguette
German : Paradieskörner, Guineapfeffer, Meleguetapfeffer, Malagettapfeffer
Spanish : Malagueta, Pimienta de malagueta

Habitat : Aframomum melegueta is native to West Africa, it is an important cash crop in the Basketo special woreda of southern Ethiopia.

Description:
A. melegueta is a herbaceous perennial plant native to swampy habitats along the West African coast. Its trumpet-shaped, purple flowers develop into 5 to 7 cm long pods containing numerous small, reddish-brown seeds.

Clicl to see Pictures of Aframomum melegueta :

The pungent, peppery taste of the seeds is caused by aromatic ketones; e.g., (6)-paradol (systematic name: 1-(4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)-decan-3-one). Essential oils, which are the dominating flavor components in the closely-related cardamom, occur only in traces.

Medicinal Uses:
Used in West African herbal remedies, grains of paradise relieve flatulence and also have stimulant and diuretic effects. The seeds are in a number of veterinary medicines. They appear in old pharmacopoeias like Gerard’s for a variety of abdominal complaints.  Chinese herbalists often add it to fruits such as baked pears to reduce the production of mucus in the body.  Classified in traditional Chinese medicine as an acrid, warm herb.  It’s taken for nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, indigestion, gas and loss of appetite; morning sickness, pain and discomfort during pregnancy; involuntary urination.

Other Uses:
Melegueta is commonly employed in the cuisines of West and North Africa, where it has been traditionally imported via caravan routes through the Sahara desert, and whence they were distributed to Sicily and Italy. Mentioned by Pliny as “African pepper” but subsequently forgotten in Europe, they were renamed “grains of paradise” and became a popular substitute for black pepper in Europe in the 14th- and 15th-centuries. The Ménagier de Paris recommends it for improving wine that “smells stale”. Through the Middle Ages and into the Early Modern period, the theory of the Four Humours governed theorizing about nourishment on the part of doctors, herbalists and druggists: in this context, “graynes of paradise, hoot & moyste þey[clarification needed] be” John Russell observed, in The Boke of Nurture.

In 1469, King Afonso V of Portugal granted the monopoly of trade in the Gulf of Guinea to Lisbon merchant Fernão Gomes, including the exclusive trade of Aframomum melegueta, then called “malagueta” pepper – which was granted by 100 000 real-annually in exchange for exploring 100 miles of the coast of Africa a year for five years.[8] After Christopher Columbus reached the New World in 1492 and brought the first samples of Capsicum frutescens, the name malagueta was then taken to the new chilli “pepper”.

The importance of the spice is shown by the designation of the area from the St Johns River (present day Buchanan) to Harper in Liberia as the “Grain Coast” in honor of the availability of grains of paradise. Later, the craze for the spice waned, and its uses were reduced to a flavoring for sausages and beer. In the eighteenth century, its importation to Great Britain collapsed after a Parliamentary act of George III forbade its use in malt liquor, aqua vita and cordials. In 1855, England imported about 15,000 to 19,000 lbs per year legally(duty paid). By 1880, the Encyclopaedia Britannica (9th edition) was reporting, “Grains of paradise are to some extent used in veterinary practice but for the most part illegally to give a fictitious strength to malt liquors, gin and cordials”.

Today, it is largely unknown outside of West and North Africa, except for its use as a flavoring in some beers (including Samuel Adams Summer Ale), gins, and Norwegian akvavit. In America, grains of paradise are starting to enjoy a slight resurgence in popularity due to their use by some well-known chefs. Alton Brown is a fan of its use, and he uses it in his apple pie recipe on an episode of the TV cooking show Good Eats. They are also used by people on certain diets, such as a raw food diet, because they are less irritating to digestion than black pepper.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.uni-graz.at/~katzer/engl/Afra_mel.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aframomum_melegueta
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_FGH.htm