Nutmeg and mace are plant products. Nutmeg is the shelled, dried seed of the plant Myristica fragrans, and mace is the dried net-like covering of the shell of the seed. Myristica fragrans is native to the Banda Islands of Indonesia. The tree is now grown in several other tropical regions, such as Malaysia and the Caribbean. Grenada is also one of the world’s greatest nutmeg exporters.
Nutmeg is taken by mouth for diarrhea, nausea, stomach spasms and pain, and intestinal gas. It is also taken by mouth for treating cancer, kidney disease, and trouble sleeping (insomnia); increasing menstrual flow; causing a miscarriage; as a hallucinogen; and as a general tonic.
In foods, nutmeg is used as a spice and flavoring.
In manufacturing, nutmeg oil is used as a fragrance in soaps and cosmetics. Nutmeg oil is distilled from worm-eaten nutmeg seeds. The worms remove much of the starch and fat, leaving the portions of the seed that are rich in oil.
Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for…
- Intestinal gas.
- Kidney disease.
- Producing hallucinations.
- Stomach problems.
- Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of nutmeg and mace for these uses.
How does Nutmeg work?
Nutmeg contains chemicals that might affect the central nervous system. Nutmeg might also kill bacteria and fungi.
Are there safety concerns?
Nutmeg is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth and used appropriately. Nutmeg is a commonly used spice in foods.
Nutmeg is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in doses larger than amounts found in foods and for long periods of time. Long-term use of nutmeg in doses of 120 mg or more daily has been linked to hallucinations and other mental side effects. People who have taken larger doses of nutmeg have experienced nausea, dry mouth, dizziness, irregular heartbeat, agitation and hallucinations. Other serious side effects have included death.
There is not enough reliable information available to know if nutmeg is safe when applied to the skin or what the side effects might be.
Special Precautions & Warnings:
There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking nutmeg if you are breast feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.