About Kigelia Africana
The kigelia tree used to be commonly found growing wild in Central, South & West Africa. It blooms beautiful blood-red flowers at night that look like a bell or trumpet dangling on the tree vines. Hence, many people planted it for ornamental purposes which lead to its widespread growth throughout Africa & even into some neighbouring countries too. In certain areas, it’s also known as the sausage tree due to its unusual fruit that looks like an oversized brown sausage. The kigelia fruit, although hanging on vines, can grow up to 1 meter long & weigh up to 10 kgs. It’s definitely not a tree you want to stand under during fruiting season.
Kigelia has a long history of use by various African communities. Even to this day, it is still widely used especially in rural villages with limited access to modern medicine. Kigelia’s bark, leaf, fruit & even roots have been used to remedy various diseases. But here, we shall focus only on the topical use of the kigelia fruit. The fruit is packed with a number of powerful skin friendly compounds such as antioxidant flavonoids, fatty acids, natural steroids & saponins. Therefore, it has amazing anti-bacterial property, anti-fungal & anti-inflammatory property. That supports its traditional usage for treating a wide range of skin problems, from infections, to sun burns, blemish, psoriasis, eczema & even STDs.
Interestingly, kigelia also has been applied on women chest to enlarge breast size & improve its firmness for hundreds of years.