Monday, August 24, 2009



Most people know of nutmeg, a common spice. Goes well in eggnog and such like.

What most people don't know, and continues my theme that everything is bad for your and laboratory rats at some level, is that nutmeg is toxic. Certainly if you applied to have it approved for use as a new drug you wouldn't get it past the food authorities.

We had a fruitcake submitted due to a complaint that the consumer's lips tingled when she ate the cake. Was it contaminated? No, but it had high levels of nutmeg.

Wikipedia says of nutmeg toxicity:

In low doses, nutmeg produces no noticeable physiological or neurological response.

Large doses can be dangerous (potentially inducing convulsions, palpitations, nausea, eventual dehydration, and generalized body pain).

Users report both negative and positive experiences, involving strong hallucinations, and in some cases quite severe anxiety.

Use of nutmeg as a recreational drug is unpopular due to its unpleasant taste and its possible negative side effects, including dizziness, flushes, dry mouth, accelerated heartbeat, temporary constipation, difficulty in urination, nausea, and panic. In addition, experiences usually last well over 24 hours making recreational use rather impractical.

Good reason to cut back on the nutmeg and up the rum.


  1. Wow! This is something I did not know and I love nutmeg. Love to sprinkle it on my latte, for example. What do you mean by high levels?

  2. Difficulty in urination? Must make an infusion of nutmeg before retiring in the evening; may get a good night's sleep for a change.


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