Ponmo contains zero nutrients – Medical Expert

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Nigerian Doctor and Social Media influencer, Dr Olufunmilayo has warned Nigerians to desist from eating cowskin popularly know as ponmo saying it has no nutritional value and increases one’s risk of developing cancer due to the way it is prepared.


Sincerely, do you know ponmo contains zero nutrients?

Ponmo is medically useless.

Ponmo is medically useless.

Ponmo is medically useless.

It contains:

Zero proteins.

Zero vitamins.

Zero fat/oil.

Zero carbs.

Zero nutrients.

Ponmo contains zero nutrients
Ponmo contains zero nutrients

Don’t empty your savings on Agemawo.

It’s as good as chewing a nylonbag.

Waste of money.

Waste of time.

And look at this breakdown:

NO Proteins – it can’t build your muscle.

NO Carbs/Sugar – it can’t give you energy.

NO Fibre – it can’t aid digestion.

NO Saturated Fats – it can’t help your heart.

It’s sad I know but the truth needs to be said: Ponmo is a tasty but useless delicacy.

And because of the apparent lack of nutrients in Ponmo itself: that means it is NOT advisable to give children.

Adults may eat it if they want But children need protein and nutrients to grow and devlop their brains normally.

Too much Ponmo in a child can make the child dull

People see Ponmo as a cheap “alternative” to proper protein sources like meat, milk or eggs.

But let us be clear on this once and for all: Ponmo has ZERO protein and it is NOT a protein alternative. So if you give kids.

Ponmo with no other protein, you will destroy that child.

Normal mental development.

Normal physical development.

Developing immunity to fight infections.

Growing children in the first few years of life need foods rich in proteins, carbohydrates and nutrients to achieve all this.

Giving children Ponmo alone can lead to stunted growth.

Let’s talk a bit more: Are you aware of how Ponmo is made? Ponmo is animal skin- mostly from cows. The skin is then either boiled or burnt and then the hair is removed and sold to you to eat.

Have you thought about any risks that may be attached to the process? I will tell you.

For a lot of the Ponmo, what happens is that the animal skin is burnt with fire – sometimes they use old car tyres, wood, refuse stuff, and even diesel/petrol to make the fire bigger and for the skin to burn faster. Recently NAFDAC shuts down a three ponmo industries that uses formalin for preservation

Now this burning is what gives you the brown soft Ponmo.

Health risks of ponmo

Another thing you should note is that many of the animals that the skin is sold to you as Ponmo may be ill and have skin diseases but you would never know. They kill these animals, skin them and just sell it to you – and there’s a good chance of you being harmed from these.

Health experts have raised alarm about ponmo in the past

You must never forget that nobody really regulates the Kponmo industry and ensure that what they sell to the public is safe/healthy for consumption. That alone makes it quite a risky thing to eat. Some animals die while being treated by vet doctors- and the owners sell them.

Some of the medications used to treat sick animals may be stored in the animal skin- and if not well processed (which you can’t guarantee)- then there’s a high chance that what you are eating could literally be harming you medically.

So except you can monitor the process of how the Ponmo was done and you can vouch for the person packaging, processing and selling it to you from the point of their production to the end point of you buying it- then there’s a very high chance that what you are buying is potentially dangerous, unsafe and can harm you.

So with all the backlash and comments – and I’m also a fan of good Ponmo by the way- but what’s the way forward? I will suggest a few – be patient with me.

1. Don’t eat Ponmo thinking that it has any nutrients whatsoever to give you.

2. Make sure you wash and boil it properly. If you will never give up Ponmo, that’s fine, but PLEASE always wash properly when you get home and boil throughly. That way, you will really reduce the chances that there can be anything in it that can harm you

3. Never chew raw Kponmo straight from the market. Don’t be a goat.

As I explained in earlier tweets, raw Ponmo can be dirty, unhygienic, not well processed and may have high bacteria/microorganisms in it.

NEVER eat Raw Kponmo- that’s too dangerous/unsafe. Get home, wash it well, boil it properly and then you can eat it. Again, don’t be a goat.

4. Don’t eat Ponmo alone. As I said earlier, that’s unwise. Always have proper protein and nutrient sources in your meal- like meat, eggs, fish, seafood, crayfish, etc And it’s the same advice if you are giving children. Never give a child Ponmo alone. That’s really child abuse.

5. If you are overweight and your biggest challenge is overeating- Ponmo may help. Now don’t misquote me o. Ponmo does NOT cause weight loss. But it will NOT cause weight gain.

I hope that makes sense. So if you are looking for food ideas that won’t give you weight, try Ponmo.

6. Many of us may not like this- But there’s the part of how much we lose as a country in the global leather market- said to be worth about 75billion dollars annually. I’m NOT saying never eat Ponmo, I’m only saying maybe we should start considering cutting down a little.

Ponmo contains zero nutrients
Nigeria eats shoe leather

Finally, it was NOT my intention to ruin anyone’s day or party- I just thought to share a few thoughts on a common delicacy we all love to eat. I hope you learnt something.

And I hope you pass on the message.

Thanks for reading share for others as well.

Do have a nice day and remember ponmo contains zero nutrients.

Credit: Dr Olufunmilayo


  1. This claim cannot be accurate.
    There is no part of an animal that contains NO nutrients. Even the hoof contains calcium and collagen, among other things. And the cow skin certainly contains several nutrients, but whether they are in sufficient quantities may be another topic.

    From its basic composition, the cow skin contains
    1. Cholesterol, which is useful in making steroid hormones, including testosterone
    2. Collagen
    3. Carbohydrates
    4. Proteins
    5. Electrolytes (e.g. magnesium)

    As in all things, moderation is the rule. If you must eat ponmon, eat it occasionally, for taste, if you wish. But also eat other types of meat, fish, etc.
    Stop listening to those who misrepresent scientific facts.


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