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An Exotic Beverage

Nutmeg is a tree that grows in the tropics, and the fruit produces a seed which is commercially used to make the spices mace and nutmeg. Although mostly used in baking, the active components of nutmeg also make it easily used as a medicinal tea. Nutmeg has a long history of being traded as an exotic spice, although today is it easy to find. Essential oils from nutmeg are used for fragrance in the home and on the body, and the spice is added to food for the flavor and the scent. Teas use the nutmeg for various medical benefits.

Before drinking nutmeg tea, it is important to realize that this product must be used carefully. While safe in small doses of tea or food, the larger amounts of nutmeg can be toxic and produce hallucinations. The dosages that are recommended for safe consumption may vary from person to person, according to metabolism and body weight, so do research before drinking or eating nutmeg in order to avoid unwanted side-effects. The constituents in nutmeg contain stearin and lignin, and the medicinal qualities include antifungal and antimicrobial activities. It contains anti-oxidant properties as well, but great care must be exercised before use.

Nutmeg tea can be a fragrant and delicately flavored beverage for culinary purposes, and while it does have some medicinal value, it must be used extremely cautiously. The components in nutmeg that give it its medicinal qualities also can cause delirium, convulsions and toxic poisoning. While these negative side effects are very uncommon, improper administration of this tea is ill advised. Children should avoid nutmeg tea, and women nursing or pregnant should never drink nutmeg tea, as it could lead to miscarriage. Case studies of nutmeg report that some people experienced headaches and paranoia that lasted for an extended period of time after being used.

Historically, nutmeg tea has played a great part in many religious practices throughout the world. Shamans and mystics have used the nutmeg seed to induce the psychotropic qualities in different ceremonies. When used for these types of purposes, it typically took several hours for the effects to begin, and then the side effects were quite severe and lasted for many days after use. If regular tea drinkers wish to drink nutmeg tea, it should be drunk in very small quantities and with a great deal of caution. At all costs, avoid giving this product to pets, children and pregnant women.

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