mizzeliz – working for you.. Healthy Foods — Buttons — Gardening

Category Archives: Herbs

Lasagna without Pasta…

What’s your reason for giving up Pasta? Mine are loosing weight and controlling Type 2 diabetes. Whatever your reasons are try this recipe!!!
Ingredients: 4 Servings
-2 1/2 cups zucchini, sliced lengthwise 1/4 inch thick (about 2 medium)
-1/2 lb lean ground beef (or up to 1 lb)
-1/4 cup onion, chopped
-2 small tomatoes, cut up
-1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
-1 garlic clove, minced
-1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
-1/2 teaspoon dried basil
-1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
-1/4 cup water
-1/8 teaspoon pepper
-1 egg
-3/4 cup low fat cottage cheese (or low fat or fat free ricotta)
-1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded (or up to 8 oz. divided)
-1 teaspoon flour

1. Cook zucchini until tender, drain and set aside. Fry meat and onions until meat is brown and onions are tender; drain fat. Add next 8 ingredients and bring to a boil.
2. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered 10 minutes or until reduced to 2 cups.
3. In small bowl, slightly beat egg.
4. Add cottage cheese, half of shredded cheese and flour.
5. In 1 1/2-qt. baking-roasting pan arrange half of the meat mixture. Top with half of the zucchini and all the cottage cheese mixture. Top with remaining meat and zucchini.
6. Bake uncovered at 375 degrees F for 30 minutes.
7. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake 10 minutes longer.
8. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Ginger Syrup


This seems like something I need to make… ET


Blooms and SpoonsThe weather has taken a much more delightful turn for the better here in southern Alberta and I’m really enjoying the sunshine and brilliant blue skies. Hopefully I can store up all this beneficial vitamin D to fall back on when the next round of snowstorms arrive!

I’ve been trying out a few new things in the kitchen this month, sampling some recipes that I had gathered over the last year. So many yummy dishes, so little time! As I was going through some papers, I found a little yellow sticky note with a few ingredients scribbled on it – an incomplete recipe for ginger syrup. As I had a tub full of whole gingerroot sitting in the freezer waiting to be used up, I thought I ought to give the idea a chance. I experimented with the ratio of sweetener to water, and substituted honey for the sugar listed on the note. This is what I came up with:

Ginger Syrup

3 cups water

3/4 cup local honey

8 ounces gingerroot (fresh or frozen), unpeeled, chopped into 2-inch pieces

Place all ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low and slowly simmer for up to 1 hour. The syrup should thicken and reduce somewhat. Strain off the gingerroot and allow the syrup to cool. To store, pour the syrup into bottles or a Mason jar, and seal tightly. It will keep in the fridge for up to 4 weeks.


You can add the syrup to sparkling spring water or club soda, or put a little bit in your tea (it’s especially good with green or white teas). Adjust to taste – a little goes a long way!


How To Make Your Own Super-Healthy Detox Tea —- from Herbs-info.com

I haven’t tried this yet, but I already drink Lemon water with ginger… so I’ll just add a few more ingredients..ET

I haven’t


I’m back in Austin after a wonderful whirlwind of a weekend in Omaha and Des Moines. I had such an amazing time and the event was a total success! I received so many wonderful comments and messages the next day from people saying they came away from the event feeling inspired and motivated to make changes in their own lives! One lovely lady drove all the way from Minnesota just for the event! She said she recently started incorporating my green smoothies into her routine and has already lost 15lbs!! I am so flattered that you drove all that way, Denise and am so excited to hear more about your progress!!

Linda Wagner's Detox E-Books are HERE!!

Today I was ready for a little detox and so I made a variation of my favorite Lemon Ginger Detox Tea. The ingredients pack a powerful punch and act as an anti-inflammatory, anti-infective, antioxidant, lymph system cleanser and more.

I’ve already talked about how amazing Lemon Water is on it’s own but just look at the added benefits you get when adding ginger, turmeric, and cayenne!


  • Ovarian Cancer Treatment: Ginger may be powerful weapon in the treatment of ovarian cancer. A study conducted at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center found that ginger powder induces cell death in all ovarian cancer cells to which it was applied.
  • Colon Cancer Prevention: A study at the University of Minnesota found that ginger may slow the growth of colorectal cancer cells.
  • Morning Sickness: A review of several studies has concluded that ginger is just as effective as vitamin B6 in the treatment of morning sickness.
  • Motion Sickness Remedy: Ginger has been shown to be an effective remedy for the nausea associated with motion sickness.
  • Reduces Pain and Inflammation: One study showed that ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and is a powerful natural painkiller.
  • Heartburn Relief: Ginger has long been used as a natural heartburn remedy. It is most often taken in the form of tea for this purpose.
  • Cold and Flu Prevention and Treatment: Ginger has long been used as a natural treatment for colds and the flu. Many people also find ginger to be helpful in the case of stomach flus or food poisoning, which is not surprising given the positive effects ginger has upon the digestive tract.
  • Migraine Relief: Research has shown that ginger may provide migraine relief due to its ability to stop prostaglandins from causing pain and inflammation in blood vessels.
  • Menstrual Cramp Relief: In Chinese medicine, ginger tea with brown sugar is used in the treatment of menstrual cramps. (source)


  • It is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent.
  • When combined with cauliflower, it has shown to prevent prostate cancer and stop the growth of existing prostate cancer.
  • Prevented breast cancer from spreading to the lungs in mice.
  • May prevent melanoma and cause existing melanoma cells to commit suicide.
  • Reduces the risk of childhood leukemia.
  • Is a natural liver detoxifier.
  • May prevent and slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by removing amyloyd plaque buildup in the brain.
  • May prevent metastases from occurring in many different forms of cancer.
  • It is a potent natural anti-inflammatory that works as well as many anti-inflammatory drugs but without the side effects.
  • Has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis in mice.
  • Is a natural painkiller and cox-2 inhibitor.
  • May aid in fat metabolism and help in weight management.
  • Has long been used in Chinese medicine as a treatment for depression.
  • Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it is a natural treatment for arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Has been shown to stop the growth of new blood vessels in tumors.
  • Speeds up wound healing and assists in remodeling of damaged skin.
  • May help in the treatment of psoriasis and other inflammatory skin conditions. (source)


  • Anti-Cold & Flu Agent: When you have a cold or flu, cayenne pepper helps break up congested mucus and gets it moving. Once the mucus starts to leave your body, you will get some relief from many of the flu symptoms you may be experiencing.
  • Anti-Fungal Properties: The results of one study indicated that cayenne pepper could effectively prevent the formation of the fungal pathogens.
  • Migraine Headache Prevention: Many naturopaths have known of the health benefits of cayenne pepper, especially for migraine symptoms.
  • Anti-Allergen: Cayenne is a wonderful anti-inflammatory agent and may even help relieve allergies.
  • Digestive Aid: This spice is a well-known digestive aid. It stimulates the digestive tract, increasing the flow of enzyme production and gastric juices. This, in turn, aids the body’s ability to metabolize the food (and toxins) we take into the system. Cayenne pepper is also a wonderful medicinal herb for relieving intestinal gas. It stimulates intestinal peristaltic motion, aiding in both assimilation and elimination.
  • Anti-Inflammatory Properties: Cayenne’s anti-inflammatory properties makes it a great herb for arthritis, diabetes, psoriasis and herpes-related nerve damage.
  • Prevents & Treats Blood Clots: Cayenne pepper also helps reduce atherosclerosis, encourages fibrinolytic activity and prevents the formation of blood clots, all of which can help reduce the chances of a heart attack or stroke.
  • Detox Support: Cayenne is a known circulatory stimulant. It also increases the pulse of our lymphatic and digestive rhythms.
  • Possible Anti-Cancer Agent: Studies done at the Loma Linda University in California found that cayenne pepper can prevent lung cancer in smokers. Other studies have also shown a similar reaction in cayenne’s ability to inhibit liver tumors.
  • Supports Weight Loss: Scientists at the Laval University in Quebec found that participants who took cayenne pepper for breakfast were found to have less appetite, leading to less caloric intake throughout the day. Cayenne is also a great metabolic-booster, aiding the body in burning excess amounts of fats.
  • Improves Heart-Health: Cayenne helps to keep blood pressure levels normalized. It also rids the body of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. (source)



You’ll need:

  • 2 inch knob of ginger
  • 2-3 inch piece of turmeric root or substitute 2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1-2 dashes of cayenne (or you could juice 1/2 a habanero or jalapeño pepper)
  • 4 lemons (3 for juicing and 1 for slicing as a garnish)
  • 3 droppers vanilla stevia
  • 2 quarts water

In a juicer, juice your ginger root, turmeric, and 3 lemons. I recommend using Breville brand juicers. I love Breville because they are easy to use, easy to clean, and great quality!

In a large pitcher add your juice to about 2 quarts of water, a couple droppers of vanilla stevia to taste, a couple dashes of cayenne and your thinly cut lemon slices. Mix well with a wooden spoon and adjust flavors to taste. Let sit for about 10 mins before serving to let the flavors blend.  Will last about 5 days in the fridge.

You can enjoy at room temperature or over ice. This tea is sweet, tangy and very spicy! Be ready, it’s got some serious kick!! But it always helps me “get back to normal” after travelling. I tend to get puffy and retain water when I travel and this tea helps flush out my lymphatic system and reduce swelling. I absolutely love it and I hope you do too!


I use nutmeg in cooking and I found this information so I thought I’d share it here..ET


Names of Nutmeg, past and present

Chinese: rou dou kou / ron dau kou
Japanese: hikaya
Malay: pala / buah pala
Pinyin: Rou Dou Kou
Indian: jaiphal / jatipari / jatikosha
Hindi: Jaayphala / Jayphala / Japhal / Jaephal / Jaiphal
Spanish: nuez moscada / nuez moscada y macis
German: die mustanuß / muskatbuam
French: muscade / noix muscade / fleur de muscade / macis / muscade et macis
English: nutmeg / muscade (adapted) / mace / nutmeg and mace (complete nomenclature)
Latin (esoteric): muscada (pronounced: moose-kah-duh) / nox muscada / macis (pronounced: mah-sees; alternately: mah-cheese)
Latin (scientific nomenclature): Myristica fragrans / Myristica malabarica / Myristica officinalis

Nutmeg – General Info

Nutmeg is a popular (and formerly notorious) spice that is derived from the fruit (specifically the seeds) of the nutmeg tree – Myristica fragrans; a large evergreen tree native to the Banda Islands in Indonesia. The plant now thrives in a large area that encompasses Europe and Asia, although its point of origin is oftentimes attributed to India, where the spice had been used prior to its commonplace employment in mediaeval European cuisine and medicine.

Uses Of Nutmeg
Uses Of Nutmeg – infographic to repin / share
Background image source – Brocken InaGlory (via Wikiepdia) – lic. under CC 3.0

The nutmeg plant is a relatively tall tree which grows upwards of twenty to twenty-five feet in length. It is characterized by its smooth, sap-laden grey to grayish-brown bark. It is also notable for its tendency to have uneven stem growths, and for its highly aromatic, broad, glossy leaves which possess a matte underside. The nutmeg tree also sports small white to lavender-hued star-burst shaped flowers that begin as tiny bead-like growths that later blossom into many-petaled inflorescences.

The fruit of the nutmeg tree is around the size of an apricot, with the seed being of corresponding size. The fruit is drupe-shaped, featuring smooth to slightly pitted pale-green to yellowish matte skin which encases succulent edible flesh and a singular seed with a red to dark-red hued aril. The flesh of the nutmeg may be consumed as a type of foodstuff, although it is most commonly cultivated and harvested for its seeds (which are made into whole or ground nutmeg), and its arils (the hairy, delicate coating of the nutmeg seeds) which are dried and ground to make the spice known as mace.

Just like the majority of spices, nutmeg and mace are primarily dried prior to use. The seeds are oftentimes cured to help preserve the spice and prevent its being consumed by pests. This was traditionally done by sun-drying the seeds for a week, and is then followed by slow roasting in a charcoal fire. Mace on the other hand is simply separated from the seed of the nutmeg plant and immediately sundried and powdered. Nowadays, both mace and nutmeg are processed through modern means, often undergoing flash dehydration for faster yields, although some variants available in the markets, especially the artisanal types, are still cured and processed traditionally.

Of all the known spices in the world, the nutmeg fruit is among the few plants that provide two distinct types of spices from a singular source. [1] Nutmeg is rumored to be one of the “secret ingredients” in the Coca Cola recipe.

All three parts of the fruit are known for their narcotic – and toxic – effects if taken in large enough quantities, and even the aroma of the flowers is said to be intoxicating. [2]

There are many other species of Myristica tree and over 300 are listed. [3] These grow for example in grow in India and New Guinea – but nuts from these trees are considered to be adulterants of Myristica fragrans. [3]

Nutmeg – History

Nutmeg has been used as a spice for many centuries, typically being grated fresh or purchased in ready powdered form. [3] It was well known throughout the Old World, and later on, the New World. The history of nutmeg’s use dates back to the time of the Ancient Egyptians, where it was used in religious rites, medicine, cosmetics, and in the preservation of foodstuffs. The Ancient Egyptians were (perhaps) also the first culture to employ nutmeg for the purposes of consciousness alteration, although the spread of its employment for such purposes seems to have come about after its introduction into Early Roman society.

In medieval times, nutmeg was very expensive and highly prized as a spice – and it played a curious, astonishingly significant role in the destiny of empires of those days.

Nutmeg was known to have reached Constantinople by the 9th century: St Theodore of Studium (759 – 826 A.D.), a Byzantine monk of Constantinople, was said to have allowed the use of Nutmeg in his monastery, though whether it was previously forbidden due to alleged aphrodisiac effects, or whether due to the fact that monks were supposed to live a plain life without excessive sensory stimulation, is not stated. [3]

Myristica fragrans
Myristica fragrans (nutmeg)
Illustration from old medicinal plant book (Kohler)

Nutmeg is mentioned in the Canterbury Tales of Chaucer (c. 1343 – 25 October 1400). Chaucer’s Sir Thopas describes “licorice and ginger and many a clove and nutmeg to put in ale”. Nutmeg was called Notemuge at that time, the name meaning a nut with musky fragrance.

In those days, the world’s only source of Nutmeg was Run Island, one of the smallest islands in the Indonesian Banda Islands. Due to the value of Nutmeg, and of mace, derived from the fruit of the same tree, Run was considered of economic importance despite its small size. Arab traders kept the Banda’s location secret; controlling the market and selling Nutmeg for a high price to Venetian traders. [4] The Venetians in turn held the monopoly of European trade with the Middle East, and grew wealthy – as herbs and spices were among the most expensive and in-demand products of the Middle ages. [5]

This scenario lasted until 1511, when the Portuguese learned the location of the islands. Then followed the English and the Dutch, who fought ferocious battles for supremacy in the spice trade.[3]

The price of nutmeg was driven sky-high by faith in the belief that a recipe of nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves; eaten, powdered and mixed into drinks, or even worn, was the only remedy for the plague. Traders of old were known to “hype” the mysteries of nutmeg, telling tales that the spices came from Eden itself, or of great and terrifying dangers undergone in its harvesting. It’s been said that at this time, a sackful of nutmeg could have set a person up financially for life. [6] The practice of carrying a nutmeg in the pocket as a charm against ill health continued until recent times in England.

From 1620 the Dutch reigned supreme in the spice trade until eventually, in the early 19th century, Nutmeg trees were transplanted to British colonies such as Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) and Grenada. [4]

Nutmeg – General Herbal Uses:

Nutmeg plays a major role in both modern and ancient cuisine, where it’s edible fruit, and its two derivative spices are often incorporated into a wide array of different dishes. The fruit of the nutmeg tree is usually made into a sweet preserve after the extraction of the seeds and arils, although very ripe specimens can be eaten as is without any preliminary preparations. In a number of Asiatic cultures, the succulent flesh of the nutmeg fruit is typically made into candies, or otherwise incorporated into a number of different desserts.

Nutmeg seeds and powdered mace derived from its arils are the two most commonly employed constituent parts of the nutmeg plant, with its uses being by far more popular than even the employment of the whole fruit itself. In terms of culinary uses, there is a long-standing debate over the better of the two spices, although it is a general given that nutmeg imparts a slightly more robust flavour in contrast to mace’s more delicate notes. Due to the fact that mace and nutmeg both share a slightly similar flavour and aroma profile, they tend to be used interchangeably, especially by amateur culinary enthusiasts. There is also a long-standing misconception that states that powdered nutmeg is equivalent to mace, however, they are in fact two wholly different spices.

Both mace and nutmeg are highly aromatic and flavourful, often releasing the utmost of its aromatic notes when warm or hot. Both of these spices are commonly ground into powder and mixed with other types of seasonings, and due to its highly flavourful (and originally extremely costly) nature, are usually integrated only in very small amounts. Its limited use should also be credited to the fact that in very large amounts, both nutmeg and mace is highly toxic. Both nutmeg and mace feature in some regional garam masala (Indian spice mixture) recipes, and may be integrated into spice rubs, or employed as a general seasoning for sundry foods and beverages. In older times, nutmeg and mace was extensively used by the more affluent for the curing of meats, or for the emboldening of stews, especially those which contain gamey meats. In European culture, it is usually associated with flavouring a wide assortment of warming alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and was an almost indispensable ingredient in mulled beverages. The subtler flavour of mace usually allotted it a place in most sweetmeats and desserts, although even the bolder nutmeg was also incorporated into snacks, typically in very small amounts. Both spices were also known to be added into different preserves to add subtle nuances in its flavour, and to further improve and extend its shelf-life. [1]

The medicinal use of nutmeg stretches back to the time of the Ancient Egyptian and Early Roman periods, where it’s very integration into foodstuffs (and the subsequent consumption of foodstuffs containing nutmeg or mace) was in itself of medicinal value. The earliest common medium of medicinal employment for nutmeg and mace seemed to be in its integration into mulled spirits, which yielded a semi-narcotic draught which was known to be an excellent stomachic, digestive aid, relaxant, antipyretic, expectorant, and emmenagouge. It was almost never used by itself and was commonly combined with an assortment of other herbs and spices, typically cloves, cinnamon, and ginger root. The most common use of nutmeg and mace is as a mild tea to seasoning to help settle the stomach and alleviate the symptoms of nausea. When taken during a dizzy spell, it is traditionally noted to help prevent vomiting. [7]

Powdered nutmeg and mace was also taken as a form of snuff, by itself or mixed with shredded tobacco (and in some variants, cloves). It was notorious for its hallucinogenic after-effects, although it was partaken of more for the relief of flu symptoms such as stuffy nose, headaches, and migraine. Imbibed as a smokable mixture, it was also reputedly employed to help alleviate the symptoms of cough and cure asthma, although general oral consumption of either spices were just as equally effective (sans the possible hallucinogenic side-effects).

Very potent decoctions of whole nutmeg seeds have been employed during the Middle Ages as an early type of anti-microbial wash or rinse, and can be employed for medicating bandages or sterilizing injuries such as wounds to help avoid infection. Mixed with cloves, rosemary, and nettle leaves, nutmeg can be employed as an after-shampoo hair rinse. It may even be allowed to macerate in apple cider or cane vinegar to achieve similar purposes, as regulated use has traditionally been said to improve hair-growth and stave off premature graying. Ground into a very fine powder and mixed with bath salts, yogurt, powdered senna (Cassia obovata), powdered henna (Lawsonia enermis) or any other medium base, it can be employed cosmetically to help improve skin tone and complexion, or (if applied to the hair and scalp via a henna or senna paste base, it can effectively improve hair texture and fight dandruff, along with a number of common scalp problems. [8]

Because of its prolific use in the fields of cuisine and medicine, a culture developed from the employment of nutmeg, so much so that by the latter part of the 17th century affluent individuals would oftentimes carry portable nutmeg graters made from (or plated with) precious metals. [9] These highly ornamental fashion accessories often encased a moderately sized nutmeg seed, which could be grated, and the powder derived from the action caught by the compartment that initially housed the seed. This made it possible for people to lace nearly everything they partook of with nutmeg in the belief that its medicinal properties (being above-par) were akin to a panacea. Realistically, the vogue for nutmeg and mace began to take hold of the European populace due to the undeniable mood-altering effects that were experienced from the copious consumption of nutmeg. To this effect, a tea with a few grates of fresh nutmeg integrated into it can help to alleviate stress and improve one’s mood, while an extremely mild spiced tea made from a nutmeg seed (with or without the inclusion of other spices) is said to help warm the body, improve circulation, and (quite contradictorily) even promote sleep.

For a time, nutmeg was also notoriously employed by women as an abortifacient. Typically consumed whole, or otherwise imbibed in small doses repeatedly over a period of several weeks, it was believed to induce abortion primarily due to its cytotoxic properties. Its use as an extremely dangerous abortifacient reached its zenith sometime during the latter part of the Vicrtorian Era, where it proved to be a highly popular ‘drug’ for women who worked in houses of pleasure. Its use as an abortifacient soon extended to general usage, eventually eclipsing its other medicinal uses. Its employment for contraceptive purposes pervaded until well into the early 1900s, causing many cases of recorded and unrecorded fatalities brought about by nutmeg poisoning. [10] To this day, nutmeg is still considered a dangerous spice despite its common integration into a variety of foodstuffs, although its accidental liberal usage is nevertheless a slightly common happenstance, more so when it comes to inexpert cooks who are new to the idea of incorporating spices into their foods.

The essential oil of nutmeg (obtained via steam distillation of ground nutmeg seeds) is also a very popular therapeutic and culinary ingredient. It is typically integrated into dishes in lieu of whole or ground nutmeg, albeit in relatively lesser amounts. It is incorporated into cough syrups (a common addition in Traditional Chinese Medicinal tonics and syrups), or mixed with a base oil to create anti-arthritic or anti-rheumatic ointments or salves. It may be used in its pure state to help relieve toothaches or heal bleeding gums in much the same light as clove oil. It has also been employed for aromatherapeutic purposes, usually for diffusers, where it is employed as a stress-relieving and enervating aroma. [11]

Nutmeg – Esoteric Uses:

In the general body of western esoteric herbalism, nutmeg is employed most commonly as an incense is burnt for protection, to increase psychical abilities, for attracting luck. Mace is equally employed for the selfsame purposes, and it is said that the scent of incense boosts one’s intellectual acuity. Whole nutmeg plays a very potent and powerful role in voodoo and hoodoo, where it is commonly employed in the creation of juju bags that are carried as good luck or protection charms. In Creole superstition, it is said that nutmeg is an excellent spice to be employed when attempting to attract love or increase desire. A folkloric belief stated that sprinkling grated nutmeg on a woman’s left shoe at midnight for seven consecutive days would drive her mad with love and desire for whoever performed the act. [12]

Nutmeg is a somewhat popular (albeit extremely dangerous) natural hallucinogen. Whether imbibed in small portions for a short, consecutive span of time, or drunk in moderately large doses in a short amount of time, nutmeg – and subsequently, mace – possesses mild to potent hallucinogenic effects, although with very detrimental (and even lethal) after-effects. [13] The use of nutmeg as a hallucinogen may have stemmed from a traditional shamanic employment of the plant-matter to achieve altered states of perception, although no historical record of tribal usage solely within the context of its being an entheogen has been found to support such possibilities save for limited accounts that suggest the use of close species of the nutmeg family as a hallucinogenic drug in the Amazon basin. It was, and still remains a somewhat unsafe ‘filler’ – used unscrupulously to increase the potency of street drugs – a practice that became somewhat commonplace during the early 1960s at the height of the hippy culture. The essential oil of nutmeg has also been employed for hallucinogenic purposes. The essential oil contains elemincin, a hallucinogenic compound that is similar to mescaline.

Is Nutmeg an Aphrodisiac?

Nutmeg has had a reputation as an aphrodisiac since ancient times, and has been included in many an “aphrodisiac formula”. Hari Datt Sharma’s 2005 “Better Sex The Herbal Way” states that nutmeg is chewed with betel leaf to create euphoria, and that it “acts as an aphrodisiac by stimulating the higher centres of sex.” It’s said to have been made into a love potion in Israel, and, fried in gingili oil, rubbed into the genitals before intercourse to create a pleasant sensation. This practice was also described by the English “Professor of Physick” William Salmon (1644–1713), who stated that nutmeg oil applied in this way was an aphrodisiac. [14] This doesn’t seem particularly safe as it may be irritant and so is not advised.

Nutmeg has also had a reputation as an aphrodisiac in the Unani medicinal system (India) [15] and in other cultures of the orient.

Spices were associated with luxury and the exotic; is it any wonder then that they have acquired a reputation as being aphrodisiac? However, some scientific research has actually been done into the aphrodisiac qualities of nutmeg. A study on mice at the Faculty of Unani Medicine, Aligarh Muslim University, India – in 2003 and 2005 – found that extracts of the nutmeg and clove were found to stimulate the mounting behaviour of male mice, and also to significantly increase their mating performance. [16]

This was followed up at the same faculty by a 2005 study on rats, which found, at the dose of 500 mg/kg “significant and sustained increase in the sexual activity of normal male rats without any conspicuous adverse effects, [indicating] that the 50% ethanolic extract of nutmeg possesses aphrodisiac activity, increasing both libido and potency, which might be attributed to its nervous stimulating property.” [17]

Nutmeg contains myristicin, a substance that has been used by drug chemists as a precursor to the restricted narcotic MDA, and it has been hypothesized that myristicin is transformed in the body to similar substances in the amphetamine family, which would explain the stimulant effects. Nutmeg also contains elemicin, another substance with structural similarity to amphetamines, safrole and many other compounds. [15]

Nutmeg – Safety Notes:

Although small amounts of nutmeg are said to produce no neurological or physiological response, nutmeg is dangerous when taken in large doses, and can even (rarely) be fatal. As little as one heaping tablespoon of nutmeg taken straight-up or otherwise integrated into beverages or foodstuffs and consumed immediately can result in discomforts associated with a flood of myristicin in the bloodstream. A dose of 7.5g or more is said to lead to convulsions, palpitations, nausea, intoxication, and possibly panic. The intoxication produced by high doses of nutmeg is generally held to be of a very unpleasant nature, and it is often reported not to be worth seeking out as a “high”. Don’t do it! It’s very dangerous and will not be a fun time.

Myristicin is also reported deadly to some animals in quantities harmless to humans – and for this reason Nutmeg should NEVER be given to dogs. [3]

Nutmeg may be illegal in some countries including Oman and Saudi Arabia.[18]

Nutmeg should not be given to pregnant women due to its abortifacient effects. While very minute doses seem to be relatively safe, the risk the possibility of induced abortion caused by nutmeg is a risk that mustn’t be taken.

There has at times been much adulteration and fraud in the Nutmeg trade. [19] One famous (and amusing) example from history actually involved carving fake “nutmegs” out of wood. Presumably these might have been mixed in with some real nutmegs in order to make the bag more profitable…

Nutmeg is listed in the AHPA’s “Herbs of Commerce”, p252. [20]

Nutmeg – References:

[1-2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutmeg

[3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutmeg

[4] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Run_(island)

[5] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spice_trade

[6] http://web.archive.org/web/20100406162701/http://www.seventypercent.com/2007/12/the-spice-of-life/

[7] http://botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/n/nutmeg07.html

[8] http://books.google.com.ph/books?id=3eb7OiuZIDMC&pg=PA206

[9] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutmeg_grater

[10] http://www.scribd.com/doc/22321349/63/Nutmeg

[11] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutmeg_oil

[12] http://herb-magic.com/nutmeg-whole.html

[13] http://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/data-and-analysis/bulletin/bulletin_1966-01-01_4_page003.html

[14] http://www.alternet.org/drugs/140480/do_you_know_about_the_narcotic_effects_of_nutmeg?page=3

[15] http://www.pharmj.com/editorial/20061223/christmas/p786spicytale.html

[16] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14567759

[17] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16033651

[18] http://www.erowid.org/plants/nutmeg/nutmeg_law.shtml

[19] http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/n/nutmeg07.html

[20] “Herbs of Commerce” (AHPA) (2000 edition) – Michael McGuffin, John T. Kartesz, Albert Y Leung, Arthur O. Tucker p.252

– See more at: http://www.herbs-info.com/nutmeg.html#sthash.i1cXeePi.dpuf