Before the arrival of colonial masters in Nigeria, and the use of modern contraceptive methods like hormones, condoms, IUCD, hysterectomy etc. women used natural methods of contraception like uda water.
Now such natural methods are gradually becoming more popular again in Nigeria as women are beginning to realise that some of the modern methods of contraception have side effects.
Hormone-based birth control often comes with side effects that can range from weight gain, depression, infertility to the increased risk of certain types of cancers, heart attack or stroke.
Throughout history, a variety of plants have been used safely and effectively for contraception and some of these include, Negro or Ethiopian pepper (Botanical Name-Xylopia Aethiopica) also known as Uda in the Igbo language or Eeru alamo in the Yoruba language or Chimba in the Hausa language.
It is native of the low land rainforest and moist fringe forest in the savanna zones of Africa, largely located in a West, Central and Southern Africa and also in the dry country sides.
The key constituents in Negro pepper/UDA are Diterpenic and Xylopicacid, copper, manganese and zinc.
It also consists of mono & sesquirter peniods with typical constituents like &-(alpha) and B (beta) Pinene, myrene, P-cumene, limonene, to mention but few (people in the medical field will understand these components better).
The nature,variety and chemical constituents of these spices have made their use SIGNIFICANT i.e. UDA spices have a strong taste of aroma which make them useful. This spice can be found in ‘Suya Pepper’.
Here on Mamalette.com our very own Madame Joyce Tochukwu who did a dissertation while at university on this very subject frequently explains what this spice is and how it can be used to prevent pregnancy.
According to Madame Tochukwu,
“The issue of unwanted pregnancy among nursing mothers in Nigeria is quite alarming. While most mothers aim to space their kids many don’t quite achieve their aim. As an ardent reader and participant on the Mamalette.com forum, I have decided to assist other mothers by informing them on how to effectively use a natural method of contraceptive called UDA water.”
“You should note that unlike hormonal contraceptives, there are no side effects to using UDA water to prevent pregnancies.”
“It is also safe for women who are breastfeeding infants, in fact UDA water contains vitamins A, B1, B2, C, E and folic acid.
How do you prepare UDA water?
Step 1: Purchase a large quantity of UDA and put this in a pot e.g. 250 grams which should be about half the size of a tin of Milo.
Step 2: Add about 60cl of water e.g. a bottle of Nestle water
Step 3: Boil the UDA in this water for 5 minutes and allow it to cool.
Step 4: Once the boiled UDA water has cooled down you can store it into a container of your choice e.g. you can use your plastic bottle and place it in a refrigerator.
UDA water can be preserved in a refrigerator for one month at 25 degrees centigrade i.e. normal storage compartment in the refrigerator.
Do not put in the freezer so that the active ingredient will be stable although is more active when is not stored for too long.
Step 5: Immediately after sexual intercourse with your husband, shake the bottle very well and pour the UDA water into a glass. A glass of this contraceptive water should be just fine. Some women also prefer to take this before sex(this is because some spermatozoa are stubborn).
Madame Joyce Tochukwu carried out research on the effective use of Negro pepper as a contraceptive in August 2003.
For any more questions, Madame Tochukwu can be reached at [email protected]
You can also ask her questions on the Mamalette Facebook page.