Just look at this gorgeous pod of deliciousness!
The red, almost brain-like cover is what mace is made from. The nutmeg we know and love, and use in cooking is hidden underneath. Isn’t nature wonderful? The colours are divine and the nutmeg seed is protected by layers of cellular material. This seed is part of the whole pod which is actually the fruit of this evergreen tree.
Like many spices and spice oils, nutmeg has a rich history spanning, in the very least hundreds of years, and probably even more. Originating from the Banda Islands, north of Timor and west of Papua New Guinea, the trade of this wonderful spice is traced as far back as the middle ages in Europe. You can imagine how long before this the islanders would have used this amazing plant.
In the 1600’s the Dutch East India Company ruled the spice trade and the beautiful islands. They staged a nasty takeover of the islands to absolutely rule and control the supply of nutmeg to the world. When the Brits took over they transplanted many of these nutmeg trees to other islands under British rule and because of this Grenada actually produces 20% of the world’s nutmeg supply. They even have an illustration of the nutmeg on their flag.
Our modern history is quite brutal really. Thank goodness we are now in a time of rapid evolution – the best time to employ essential oils to get us all to the next level of peace and harmony.
The essential oil of nutmeg is steam distilled from the seed and it is high in a-pinene (alpha pinene, b-pinene (beta pinene) and sabinine (also in black pepper oil); with many other constituents including camphene. We know that camphene (and other types of camphor molecules) are warming and stimulating constituents – and so is the oil of nutmeg.
The traditional uses of nutmeg include:
* to ease the symptoms of colds and flu
* as a tonic to warm the body
* as a treatment for all things digestive – to stimulate appetite, to treat nausea and vomiting and to generally stimulate the digestive fire
* as an anti-inflammatory agent especially in the treatment of arthritis and swelling of the joints
* to warm aching muscles and joints
The nutmeg spice is known as an hallucinogen due to a chemical constituent called elemecin, which Wikipedia claims is similar to the properties of mescaline. According to Salvatore Battaglia (an aromatherapist and author of a great book called “The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy”), this is lost in the distillation process and is not present in the oil.
Isn’t it interesting that the red mace covering of the seed looks like a brain – and that the seed can effect the brain, inspiring whacky mind visions!
I use this oil as a connection to spirit – as an awakening oil of the mind and the higher chakras. I find nutmeg oil to be expansive on all levels of our existence – the physical, the emotional, the mental and the spiritual. And just the fact that it’s called “myristica”, I always think of this oil as an agent of attaining our mystical existence, and accessing our mystical guides. I use this oil when I need to connect to universal intelligence.
Try these recipes:
1. Pure Pulse Point Perfume
In a little dish mix these oils and anoint your pulse points or chakras – 3 drops of essential oils and dilute with a few drops of carrier oil – always patch test first!
Allow divine guidance to enter your world
Nutmeg 2 drops * patch test first as nutmeg could be sensitising to the skin
Orange 1 drop
2. Scent Your Space
In a traditional oil burner with a candle or a diffuser add 25 drops of oil
Reach out into the universe with love
Nutmeg 10 drops
Rosewood 8 drops
Mandarin 6 drops
Remember to use your intention when you are blending, it will add to the creation process and also be an exercise in using your intuition.