Nutmeg Benefits + Side Effects

By Adriane Marie •  Updated: 08/03/22 •  9 min read
nutmeg benefits and side effects

Health

Nutmeg health benefits may include:

Nutmeg benefits also include being…

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Environment

Water footprint: high, it takes 34,319 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of nutmeg / 4,112 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of nutmeg

Carbon footprint: low, 1.6 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of spices, a car driving equivalent of 3.75 miles or 6 kilometers

Destruction: low, nutmeg production is relatively sustainable, there is no known significant damage to air, water, land, soil, forests, etc. as long as pesticides have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc.

Nutmeg is…

Animals

Kills: none, nutmeg production does not require any animals to be killed

Harms: none, nutmeg production does not require any animals to be used

Indirectly kills or harms: none, no animals are indirectly killed or harmed from nutmeg production as long as toxic chemicals have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as pesticides harm and kill wildlife and ecosystems by contaminating soil, water, air and plants that animals eat

Nutmeg is…

Laborers

Health and safety: varies, overall, agriculture continues to be one of the most dangerous industries, farmworkers may be subject to dehydration, heat stroke, unprotected exposure to harmful, toxic chemicals and pesticides, unsafe machinery and clean drinking water may not always accessible

Living conditions: varies, laborers are often exploited, they may face tough working conditions including long hours in the sun and heat performing physically exhausting tasks, labor laws and rights may or may not be in place, even if worker protection exists, employer violations may go unreported, refugees and migrant workers are especially vulnerable to abuse and mistreatment, fearing consequences of job loss or deportation

Wages: varies, generally farmworkers earn meager wages, there are many cases of underpaid agricultural workers, wage theft and no overtime payment or benefits

Nutmeg…

Where does most nutmeg come from? 📍

The world’s top nutmeg producing country is Indonesia, followed by Guatemala and India. Indonesia makes up approximately 50% of the world’s nutmeg production.

The world’s top nutmeg exporting country is Indonesia, followed by India, Germany, Sri Lanka, Grenada, Netherlands, Belgium, UK, Spain and France.

Is nutmeg nutritious? 🥗

Yes! Nutmeg contains thiamin, folate, vitamin-B6, and niacin. It’s high in dietary fiber (86%), low in calories (26%) and carbohydrates (16%), and fat content is fair (56%)

nutmeg is alkaline when fresh.

acidic foods and alkaline diet benefits that improve ph levels

Is nutmeg alkaline or acidic?

Nutmeg is alkaline.

What is the pH of nutmeg?

Nutmeg has an 8.0 pH level when fresh once digested.

When you eat food, it breaks down to an ash residue that can be neutral, acidic or alkaline. Minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, zinc, silver, copper and iron produce an alkaline ash; whereas sulfur, phosphorus, chlorine and iodine, which are in meat, coffee, dairy and alcohol, leave an acid ash.

Going alkaline easier than ever with this: Acidic and Alkaline Foods List

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nutmeg is gluten free.

glutinous foods have side effects but a gluten free diet can help

Is nutmeg gluten free?

Yes, nutmeg is gluten free. Nutmeg does not contain gluten. Nutmeg is a type of spice, therefore making it a naturally gluten free food. 

Celiac and gluten sensitivity symptoms are similar and may include:

There are hundreds of potential symptoms, many of which are also symptoms of other conditions.

Going gluten-free easier than ever with this: Gluten and Gluten Free Foods List

nutmeg is not a common food allergen.

side effects of common food allergens like milk, wheat, soy, fish, tree nuts, peanuts, eggs and crustaceans

Is nutmeg a common food allergen?

No, nutmeg is not a common food allergen. Some people may experience allergic reactions to nutmeg but it is relatively rare by comparison.

A group of the eight major allergenic foods, AKA the Big-8, include:

Severe food allergies can be life threatening. Following ingestion of a food allergen, a person with food allergies can experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Persons may still be allergic to and have serious reactions to foods other than the eight foods identified by the law.

Be aware of common dietary restrictions and food allergens with this: The Big 8 Most Common Food Allergens List

nutmeg has a high water footprint.

water footprints of food and products

Does nutmeg have a high or low water footprint?

Nutmeg has a relatively high water footprint compared to other foods.

What is the water footprint of nutmeg?

It takes 34,319 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of nutmeg / 4,112 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of nutmeg.

Did you know that water is a finite, non-renewable resource? Once it’s gone, it’s gone!

How much water does it take to produce an apple? A serving of rice? A steak dinner?

We need to be aware of something referred to as a “water footprint”. That is, the amount of fresh water utilized in the production or supply of goods we consume. As it turns out it takes significantly more water to yield foods that come from animals than foods that come from plants. Imagine how much water a cow needs to consume to generate a piece of beef. Not only how much water a single cow drinks, rather all the water that went into producing the crops that the cow ate.

Find out how much water your food consumes with this: Water Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

nutmeg has a low carbon footprint.

carbon footprints of food and food emissions

Does nutmeg have a high or low carbon footprint?

Nutmeg has a relatively low carbon footprint compared to other foods.

What is the carbon footprint of nutmeg?

It takes around 1.6 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of spices, a car driving equivalent of 3.75 miles or 6 kilometers.

When calculating carbon emissions, some factors may include…

But that’s not all!

It’s best to keep the following in mind when grocery shopping:

Find out how much carbon your food emits with this: Carbon Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

nutmeg is moderately sustainable.

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Overall, is nutmeg eco friendly? Is nutmeg sustainable?

Nutmeg production is moderately sustainable. Aside from high water consumption, there is no known significant damage to air, water, land, soil, forests, etc. as long as pesticides have not been used. Be sure to buy non GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc. when using regenerative practices.

A 2018 Oxford University study – which is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet – found that ‘avoiding meat and dairy is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on Earth’ as animal farming provides just 18% of calories but takes up 83% of our farmland.

Consuming animal products and byproducts is not environmentally friendly and is one of the worst things for the Earth. Not only is meat production wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution. The industry is one of the biggest causes of climate change.

nutmeg is vegan.

benefits of vegan food to eat on a vegan diet which helps save animals

Is nutmeg vegan?

Yes, nutmeg is vegan. Nutmeg is a fruit, commonly ground into a spice and not an animal product or byproduct, therefore making it a vegan food. 

Animals of factory farming are suffering. They live in horrific conditions that often include confinement, physical abuse and unnatural environments…so much so that they need to receive antibiotics to keep from getting ill or spreading disease. Growth hormones allow all kinds of animals to become fatter faster and live short lives.

Because we cannot see for ourselves how these animals live and what they endure does not mean it isn’t happening. The meat, poultry and dairy industries do everything they can to distance us from knowing how our food comes to be in order to keep us in the dark about what we support each time we buy animal derived products and byproducts.

Go vegan for animals!

It’s the best way to help animals and it’s not as difficult as you may think. Speak for animals with your actions, for they cannot speak at all.

Going vegan is easier than ever, at a glance with this: Vegan and Non Vegan Foods List

nutmeg may or may not have labor issues.

benefits of buying fair trade, labor rights, human rights and workers rights issues

Is nutmeg a product with laborer concerns?

At this time there are no major concerns with nutmeg production but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening!

It’s important to stay aware of human rights concerns and worker exploitation that may be associated with specific brands.

Did you know the single largest employer in the world is agriculture? The labor involved behind each and every product cannot go unrecognized. 

Some known problems include workplace health and safety, child labor, gender inequality, inadequate pay, wage theft and exploitation. Workers can even experience to harassment, humiliation and violence and unfair employers often fail to provide laborers with access to shade, drinking water, restrooms and breaks.

Such mistreatment is like modern day slavery. Workers are often afraid to report issues because they fear it will result in losing their jobs or deportation. 

We can improve people’s lives with foods we eat every day simply by buying products that are certified fair trade. 

Conclusion

Nutmeg pros include:

Nutmeg cons include:

Sources:

Spices, nutmeg, ground – FoodData Central

Myristica fragrans Houtt. nutmeg – USDA Plants Database

Adriane Marie

Hi, I'm Adriane, creator of HEALabel! I organize info for you to comprehensively see how purchases impact health, environment, animals and laborers. Stay aware because you care! Subscribe below to get my weekly newsletter with tips, new info and other ethical consumer insight.

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