Medicinal uses of Nutmeg or Jaiphal

Nutmeg is aromatic, volatile oil containing ripe fruit of evergreen tree Myristica fragrans belonging to family Myristicaceae. The seed of the tree is known as nutmeg and the aril of the seed is called Mace or Jaivitri. Indonesia is one of the largest supplier of this medicinal herb. In India it is cultivated in cultivated in the Nilgiris, Kerala, Karnataka and West Bengal. Nutmeg is used for adding flavour and also for medicinal purpose.  All around the globe, it is used as folk remedy for treating ailments especially related to digestive system.


Nutmug has antioxidant, anti-diarrhoeal, stimulant, carminative, astringent, aphrodisiac and abortifacient (causing abortion) properties. It is used for treating colic, indigestion, loose motion, gas, nausea, rheumatism etc.

Ayurvedic:  Jaiphal, Jatiphala, Jatiphalam, Jatikosha, Jatipatri, Jatipatra
Unani:  Jauzbuwaa (seed)
Siddha/Tamil:  Jaathikkai, Saadikai (nutmeg)

Here are some simple home remedies of Nutmeg

  • Dysentery
    Take a pinch of powdered nutmeg with a cup of hot milk.
  • Diarrhoea
    Mix a pinch of nutmeg powder in 1/4 teaspoon of ginger paste.  Mix in one glass buttermilk and drink.
  • Loose motion, colic pain
    Mix nutmug powder (1/8 teaspoon) with gur or jaggery and 1 tsp ghee and take for curing loose motion.
  • Dehydration due to diarrhoea, loose motion, cholera
    Take half nutmug. Soak in one glass water for 3 hours. Mix this water with coconut water in equal amount. Drink 2-3 times a day.
  • Itching, fungal infection, ringworm
    Rub one nutmeg on a stone with some water and make fine paste. Apply on the affected parts.

Caution: safe in small recommended dosage. In high doses (>15 g) Nutmeg is very toxic and has narcotic effect. In excessive doses body shows symptoms of delirium, epileptic convulsions, giddiness, weak pulse and feeling of heaviness in chest.  In clinical study the nutmeg oil has shown decreases fertilility in rats. During pregnancy it is better to avoid use of nutmeg.

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