An herb entry from the Ancient Herbs and Modern Herbs book by James K. Sayre, Copyright, 2001. All rights reserved.
Coffee, Robusta - Coffea robusta (Coffea canephora) - family: Rubiaceae (Madder Family).
This evergreen tree grows to about thirty feet high. It has large glossy
leathery oval-shaped dark green leaves and produces scented star-shaped
white flowers. The flowers are followed by fruits that each contain two
red-brown coffee beans (seeds). These beans (called cherries in the trade)
are fermented and then they are roasted. They are the source of the familiar
adult beverage encountered the world over. They contain significant amounts
of caffeine. Caffeine is a bitter white alkaloid with the formula C8H10N4O2.H2O.
Coffee is traditionally used as a general mental stimulant. It is used as
a remedy for fatigue, being tired and for headaches. Note: excessive amounts
cause nervousness and insomnia. Note: if you are pregnant or nursing, use
in moderation if at all, due to its caffeine content. Note: coffee is mildly
addictive; its withdrawal symptoms include headaches. Note: unroasted beans
may be toxic. They are the source of a supposedly lesser grade of coffee
than that brewed from Coffea arabica. Native to tropical Africa. Cultivated
in tropical Africa.
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Web page last updated on 20 May 2003.