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What is nutmeg? And what happens when you eat too much of it?

what is nutmeg and what are its benefits and uses
What are nutmeg’s uses and benefits?

What So Great About Nutmeg? And What are the Side Effects if You Eat Too Much of It?

Nutmeg is a unique and versatile spice with a wide range of benefits and uses. However, it is also known to have some side effects when you eat too much of it, including hallucinations and other unusual reactions in some people. First off, nutmeg is well known as a spice known to bring in the cooler weather of fall, working well in so many dishes popular around the holidays as well as hot drinks. But that wonderful taste may come with a special surprise. Are you aware of how nutmeg can act as a hallucinogenic? The privileged classes knew this, sometimes coveting this versatile spice for this extraordinary use.  So let’s explore the truth around this controversy.

nutmeg can have side effects
You don’t need much Nutmeg for the typical dish but in large quantities it does produce side effects

Nutty Side Effects

The potential hallucinogenic properties from Nutmeg have been known for some time – historical records mention its use as a narcotic as far back as the 16th & 17th centuries. So, could that dash of nutmeg at Starbucks really cause enough of a mass hallucination to sway an election or make the masses abandon Justin Bieber? The truth is it takes 1- 3 WHOLE nutmegs (5-30 g , or anecdotally 1.75 oz) to make you loopy, or even sick.

An abstract from a study by A K Demetriades, et. al. describes an 18-year-old student who had taken approximately 37 g of ground nutmeg in a milkshake. The long and short of it is that although she did not have hallucinations, she complained of palpitations, drowsiness, nausea, dizziness, thirst, and a dry mouth. She was also very anxious, restless, and agitated, describing herself as “in a trance state…like Jack in the box wanting to get out”, and didn’t recover from her episode until 16 hours after the initial ingestion.

Others like Malcolm X used a matchbox full of nutmeg while in prison stirred it into a glass of cold water to “get the kick of three or four reefers.” But before you reach for what might call a “recreational” spice, know that just 1-2mg of nutmeg per kilogram of body weight (when you eat too much nutmeg) can play havoc with your central nervous system, with a tablespoon being to bring on nausea, vomiting, flushing, elevated heart rate, euphoria, hallucinations and a dry mouth.

Nutmeg has many benefits
Nutmeg’s many benefits include cognitive enhancement

The Right Amount for an Amazing Benefits

Before you start to worry about your holidays being invaded by sugar plum fairies after your second helping of pumpkin pie, know most recipes ask for not teaspoons or tablespoons but just 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon to get that amazing spicy taste and that advantages the fresh spice can bring. And if you’re just spicing up a drink, a pinch is plenty!

Which brings up the principle of Ayurveda- balance. While even too much water can kill you, having the right amount of nutrients in our body can help us achieve perfect health and an ideal state of mind.

Then, what kind of benefits can you expect when you start taking nutmeg every day?

Some of the most important benefits have been found to relieve pain, soothe indigestion, strengthen cognitive function, detoxify the body, boost skin health, alleviate oral conditions, reduce insomnia, increase immune system function, and prevent leukemia.

Taking nutmeg every day has numerous benefits which you can enjoy in no time at all. One of the most significant benefit is that it can be used to effectively reduce pain and soothe indigestion. Additionally, it is known to provide a boosting effect on both your cognitive function as well as your body’s immune system, helping you stay healthy throughout the year. It also provides an incredible array of skin benefits, aiding in keeping your skin looking soft and wonderful. In addition, taking this versatile spice daily can help to reduce insomnia and has even been studied to prevent leukemia. With this incredible list of benefits from just one simple spice, there is no reason not to add nutmeg into your daily routine!

Ideally fresh nutmeg can help you get the most benefits
With a spice grinder or microplane be sure to use fresh nutmeg for maximum benefits

So how much Nutmeg should you have daily?

Both history and experts tell us it is safe in small amounts. Just 1 to 2mg a day is plenty to spice up your life, your health, and keep you in tip top shape, but what are the best ways to have it?

Best Uses of Nutmeg

While it isn’t quite the nutrient superstar like moringa, a spice like nutmeg plays a key part in giving you nutrients you’re not getting at your average meal. These include Vitamin A, C, E, manganese, magnesium, copper, phosphorous, zinc, and iron. But what are some cool ways to add it to your food?

Surprisingly, nutmeg is a delicious and versatile ingredient that can enhance the flavor of countless dishes. Traditionally used in European and Indian cuisine, whole nutmeg can be freshly ground to give dishes a new and unique flavor. There are so many uses for nutmeg making it perfect for those looking to explore their culinary creativity. From sprinkling over breakfast cereals or oatmeal to baking with it, nutmeg can add zest and zing to any dish. It’s also great in hot beverages like coffee and hot chocolate, as well as in seasonal favorites like eggnog, mulled cider, and mulled wine. And don’t forget vegetables – nutmeg is a sure hit when added to cauliflower or sweet potatoes! Whether you’re exploring traditional uses of this delicious spice or finding creative ways to incorporate it into your own dishes, adding nutmeg can add beautiful depth of flavor that’s sure to entertain your company’s taste buds.

spice shopping for nutmeg
When you spice shopping for nutmeg, look for the freshest you can find, and make it organic

Where do you find good nutmeg?

Thankfully, no pesticides are needed for nutmeg trees, as they are naturally pest resistant. Farmers take care of the seedlings when they first plant them and then leave the trees alone until it is time to harvest the spices. Most companies use equipment and procedures to rid the spices of any harmful pathogens before they are sent out for sale, but unfortunately too many of the “big spice” companies irradiate this amazing spice.

But we here at Coconut Country Living would never think of throwing these lovely “nuts” in a microwave or letting them sit stale in a warehouse where they lose so much of their flavor and health value. On the contrary, our generational farmers freshly pick these beauties from the nutmeg tree at their nutritional and taste peak, and then we lock that goodness in mylar foil bags so you can have the freshest, tastiest, purest nutmeg for a long, long time so you can experience nutmeg like this…

I ordered this product and I have never used fresh whole Nutmeg but now I will never use anything but whole Nutmeg. I baked a savory chicken and squash pie.The depth of flavor added by the nutmeg was breathtaking. I ate 2 pieces!!!

why use nutmeg review

We here at CCL believe our nutmeg is so popular because it is raised with such TLC. Not just USDA organic certified and Beyond Organic, but sourced fair trade from farmers who put their heart and souls into giving you the finest spices nature will produce.

free e-book on nutmeg's benefits
Nutmeg’s mysterious History and Amazing Benefits — Yours Free

To get you started with this hidden gem, we are also offering our free e-book from the best-selling author, Michael DiSalvo: The Mysterious History of Nutmeg & Its Amazing Benefits. What about nutmeg made it so that none other than the Big Apple was traded for Nutmeg Island and why should this special spice be part of your routine every season of the year? Find out today and enjoy the pleasure that prides itself beyond pumpkin spice to the perfect complement people all over the world treasure. And drop us a line about how you enjoy your nutmeg best, whether is sweet or savory. Check out our store at or at, and we will see you in Coconut Country!

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CCL is all about healing the world through tasty superfoods. Nature has done it for 1000s of years safely. Why change now?


Your family is important as ours, and we need as many healthy happy people out there as possible to change the world. We help farmers to earn a living wage while giving back in ways to help preserve our food system, water, and air.


Though we might be disappointed for what passes as “organic” at times, we do our best to also bring you low carb, gluten-free, keto- and paleo-friendly products that go beyond official “organic” standards.


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DISCLAIMER: The entire content of this website is based upon the opinions of representatives of Coconut Country Living, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked. The information on this website is not intended to replace solid advice of a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Mr DiSalvo and other health advocates. Coconut Country Living encourages you to make your own healthcare decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your health care professional before using products based on any content presented.

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