15 Proven Benefits of Nutmeg

Reviewed by Experts

nutmeg benefits

Nutmeg also known as Jaiphal is a popular spice that is commonly used in the culinary world to add a sweet and nutty flavour to dishes. However, this versatile spice has also been used in traditional medicine for centuries, particularly in Ayurveda. [1] [2] In this article, we will explore 15 scientifically proven nutmeg benefits according to Ayurveda, and how it can help promote overall health and well-being.

15 Proven Nutmeg Benefits You Must Know

Here are the 15 nutmeg benefits you must know for better health.

1. Improves digestion

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that help stimulate the digestive system and increase the secretion of digestive enzymes. [1]

Secondary Benefit: This can help improve nutrient absorption and prevent digestive issues such as bloating, constipation, and diarrhoea. [1]

2. Reduces inflammation

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce inflammation in the body. [1] [3]

Secondary Benefit: This can help alleviate pain, reduce the risk of chronic diseases, and improve overall health. [1] [3]

3. Boosts immunity

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have antimicrobial and antiviral properties and can help boost the immune system. [3] [4]

Secondary Benefit: This can help reduce the risk of infections and illnesses and promote overall health and well-being. [3] [4]

4. Enhances brain function

enhances brain function - nutmeg benefits

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that can help enhance brain function and improve cognitive performance.

Secondary Benefit: This can help improve memory, focus, and concentration and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases. [5] [6]

5. Promotes sleep

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have sedative properties and can help promote relaxation and improve sleep quality. [7]

Secondary Benefit: This can help alleviate insomnia and promote overall health and well-being. [7]

6. Relieves pain

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have analgesic properties and can help relieve pain. [8]

Secondary Benefit: This can help alleviate headaches, menstrual cramps, and other types of pain. [8]

7. Regulates blood sugar

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that can help regulate blood sugar levels.[3]

Secondary Benefit: This can help prevent and manage diabetes and promote overall health and well-being. [3]

8. Reduces anxiety

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have anxiolytic properties and can help reduce anxiety. [9] [10]

Secondary Benefit: This can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety disorders and promote overall mental health and well-being. [9] [10]

9. Promotes heart health

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that can help promote heart health and reduce the risk of heart disease.[3] [5]

Secondary Benefit: This can help lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol levels, and improve overall cardiovascular health. [3] [5]

10. Enhances skin health

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that can help enhance skin health and improve its appearance.[11]

Secondary Benefit: This can help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, improve skin texture, and prevent skin infections. [11]

11. Promotes oral health

promotes oral health - nutmeg benefits

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have antimicrobial properties and can help promote oral health. [3]

Secondary Benefit: This can help prevent and treat oral infections, alleviate bad breath, and promote overall oral health. [3]

12. Relieves menstrual cramps

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that can help relieve menstrual cramps. [12]

Secondary Benefit: This can help alleviate other symptoms of menstrual pain such as mood swings, bloating, and fatigue. [12]

13. Supports liver health

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that can help support liver health and improve its function. [1] [2]

Secondary Benefit: This can help detoxify the body, prevent liver damage, and promote overall liver health. [1] [2]

14. Reduces oxidative stress

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have antioxidant properties and can help reduce oxidative stress in the body. [1] [2]

Secondary Benefit: This can help prevent damage to cells and tissues and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. [1] [2]

15. Enhances respiratory health

Primary Benefit: Nutmeg contains compounds that have expectorant properties and can help relieve coughs and congestion. [2] [5]

Secondary Benefit: This can help soothe inflamed airways and reduce inflammation in the respiratory system. [2] [5]

How to use nutmeg for health benefits

Nutmeg can be used in a variety of ways to obtain its health benefits. Here are some ways you can incorporate nutmeg into your diet:

Add nutmeg powder to your dishes: Nutmeg powder can be added to sweet and savoury dishes to enhance their flavour and reap its health benefits.

Use nutmeg oil: Nutmeg oil can be used topically or in aromatherapy to promote relaxation and relieve pain.

Drink nutmeg tea: Nutmeg tea can be made by steeping grated nutmeg in hot water. This can help promote digestion and relieve menstrual cramps.

Use nutmeg in a face mask: Nutmeg can be used in a DIY face mask to promote skin health and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Precautions

While nutmeg is generally safe when used in culinary amounts, excessive consumption can cause adverse effects. Overconsumption of nutmeg can cause symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and hallucinations. It is important to use nutmeg in moderation and consult a healthcare provider before using it for medicinal purposes. [13] [14]

FAQs About Nutmeg

 

1. Can nutmeg interact with any medications?

Nutmeg can interact with some medications such as antidepressants and blood thinners. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider before using nutmeg if you are taking any medications.

2. How much nutmeg should be used for its medicinal benefits?

The amount of nutmeg used for its medicinal benefits can vary depending on the condition being treated. It is important to follow recommended dosages and not exceed them to avoid any potential side effects.

3. Where can nutmeg be purchased?

Nutmeg can be purchased at most grocery stores and health food stores. It is important to choose high-quality nutmeg and store it in a cool, dry place to maintain its freshness and potency.

4. Is nutmeg the same as mace?

Nutmeg and mace are both obtained from the nutmeg tree, but they come from different parts of the tree. Nutmeg is obtained from the seed, while mace is obtained from the outer covering of the seed. They have similar health benefits and can be used interchangeably in cooking and as natural remedies.

5. Can nutmeg be used during pregnancy?

While nutmeg is generally safe to use in small amounts during pregnancy, excessive consumption can cause uterine contractions and lead to miscarriage. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider before using nutmeg during pregnancy.

Conclusion

Nutmeg is a versatile spice that has been used in Ayurveda for centuries for its health benefits. It contains compounds that can improve digestion, reduce inflammation, boost immunity, enhance brain function, promote sleep, relieve pain, regulate blood sugar, reduce anxiety, promote heart health, enhance skin health, promote oral health, relieve menstrual cramps, support liver health, reduce oxidative stress, and enhance respiratory health. Nutmeg can be incorporated into the diet in various ways to obtain its health benefits, but it is important to use it in moderation and consult a healthcare provider before using it for medicinal purposes.

Disclaimer: This article is from a health and wellness perspective only and does not constitute medical advice. Kindly seek the help of a trained medical practitioner before initiating any treatment.

References:

  1. Phyto-pharmacological potential of Jaiphal (Myristica fragrans Houtt): A spice of medicinal importance and its utilization in Unani Medicine (researchgate.net)
  2. Myristica fragrans (Jaiphal): A Significant Medicinal Herbal Plant | International Journal for Research in Applied Sciences and Biotechnology (ijrasb.com)
  3. Elucidating-the-Phytochemical-and-Pharmacological-Potential-of-Myristica-fragrans-Nutmeg.pdf (researchgate.net)
  4. The Dietary Effects of Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) Extract on Growth, Hematological Parameters, Immunity, Antioxidant Status, and Disease Resistance of Common Carp (Cyprinus carpio) against Aeromonas hydrophila (mdpi.com)
  5. Health And Nutritional Benefits Of Nutmeg (Mystica fragrans Houtt) (mchemist.com)
  6. Phytopharmacological review on Myristica fragrans Houtt (Jaiphal). | Journal of Ayurveda and Holistic Medicine (JAHM)
  7. The pharmacological effects of a ligroin extract of nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) – ScienceDirect
  8. Biological effects of Myristica fragrans (nutmeg) extract – Olajide – 1999 – Phytotherapy Research – Wiley Online Library
  9. Indirect modulation of the endocannabinoid system by specific fractions of nutmeg total extract – PubMed (nih.gov)
  10. Phenolic compounds from nutmeg (Myristica fragrans Houtt.) inhibit the endocannabinoid‐modulating enzyme fatty acid amide hydrolase(researchgate.net)
  11. International-Journal-of-Chemistry-and-Pharmaceutical-Sciences-Cosmetics-Emulsion-from-African-Nutmeg-Oil-Monodora-Myristica-Formulation-Chemical-Evaluation-and-Microbiological-Analysis (researchgate.net)
  12. Antioxidant, antimicrobial, and health benefits of nutmeg (researchgate.net)
  13. Nutmeg overdose: Spice not so nice – ScienceDirect
  14. The spice of life: An analysis of nutmeg exposures in California (researchgate.net)
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Livayur Ayurvedic Team

The LivAyur Team includes more than 10 Ayurveda specialists, with more than 20 years of experience. They have a deep understanding of Ayurveda and are committed to sharing their expertise through our blogs, videos, live sessions, and consultations. Our experts also stay updated & monitor on the latest developments in health and wellness.