Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) Powder
Common names: Mace, Bishop’s Wort, Nootmuskaatboom, Muscadier Commun, Jaiphal, Pala, Sadhika, Rou Dou Kou, Dza Ti, Gabz, Dok Chan, Bunga Pala, Jafal, Bisbasa, Fuli, Cevz Buvat, Atipalam, Luk Chan, Malaboda, Mesu, Pattiri, Yu Guo, Vasa Vasi
Nutmeg Seeds mature within the fruit of an evergreen tree native to the Moluccas, a group of islands in eastern Indonesia. Nutmeg trees are cultivated in moderately warm, humid tropical areas including Guatemala, Indonesia, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Grenada, Malaysia, and Tanzania. They typically reach heights of 15 to 50 feet, and occasionally 60 up to nearly 100 feet. The trees are usually intercropped with Areca Nut, Coconut, or other trees, which help by providing shade.
Nutmeg has been used by people in the Indonesian archipelago for at least 3,500 years. It was one of the exotic spices that medieval Europeans prized most dearly as a medicine, preservative, and flavoring, and its price rose further in the 1500s when it was thought to prevent infection with the plague. Mace is a similar-tasting spice that is derived from the covering of the Nutmeg seed.
Like so many spices and herbs used in cooking, delicious Nutmeg aids digestion, calming flatulence, bloating, nausea, and diarrhea. Like numerous spices and herbs, Nutmeg is also rich in antioxidant, antimicrobial, and insulin-like compounds; among 78 common spices tested, it ranked among the top 10 for antioxidant activity. Antioxidant effects, in turn, are often linked to controlling inflammation and reducing pain, and Nutmeg is included in some herbal formulas for relieving the pain of injuries, headaches, and arthritis. It has been used to bring on delayed menses.
Nutmeg can also be mildly sedating. Dr. Eric Yarnell states that “The most specific herb to use for patients who wake up in the middle of the night and cannot fall back asleep is Nutmeg. With a delayed onset of action in promoting sleep, it can be taken with dinner to induce sleep at bedtime. The usual dose of fresh Nutmeg is 1/4-1/2 tsp, taken with milk, or twice that amount of dried powder.”
Nutmeg contains volatile oils, terpenes, flavonoids, and phenolic compounds. A 2017 review article explores its history and chemistry, touching on its uses for digestion, infections, and effects on the nervous system. Animal studies with Nutmeg extracts show pain-relieving, anticonvulsant, aphrodisiac, and hepatoprotective actions, and suggest that some of Nutmeg’s CNS effects may be due to its indirect interaction with the endocannabinoid system.
Medicinal use of Nutmeg is not recommended during pregnancy.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.