Nutmeg and Health - Warning of toxic nutmeg

Large amounts of nutmeg can be toxic

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Nutmeg. © 2009 Peggy Trowbridge Filippone

Nutmeg and Health

Nutmeg contains a substance called myristicin, a narcotic with very unpleasant toxic side effects if taken in large quantities. Ingestion of small amounts of nutmeg is harmless to the body, however the consumption of 1 to 3 whole nutmegs (in excess of 1 teaspoon ground) can cause wild hallucinations, nausea, vomiting, and/or circulatory collapse within 1 to 6 hours after ingestion. Very large doses can be fatal.

Although nutmeg is said to counteract stomach distress from gas, do not try any home remedies without first consulting your physician. Nutmeg is also an astringent and stimulant, as well as a purported aphrodisiac.