Nutmeg High: The New 'Spice'?

Categories: News, Pop Culture
NutmegJar.jpg
exfordy|Brian Snelson via Flickr
Spiking the eggnog has a whole new meaning now that we've learned nutmeg, that unassuming spice grandma puts into just about everything during Thanksgiving, is considered a "psychoactive drug" according to the FDA's Poisonous Plant Database.

Nutmeg's hallucinogenic properties are nothing new, as evidenced by the 1967 FDA report written by A. T. Weil and the slew of YouTube videos of people stupid enough to try to get high on the stuff. It's reported to have a similar affect as marijuana.

Can't bring your stash home from school for the holidays? Weil's report says you're a-okay: "Nutmeg and mace are cheap, legal, and available at the nearest grocery store." He writes, "Unlike prisoners or musicians, who resort to nutmeg when their supplies of standard drugs are cut off, students often take nutmeg as a first experience before they try Cannabis or other substances." Well, la-ti-da.

Want to know what to expect from this unassuming jar in your spice rack? Click through...

Sound like your perfect poison? Think again: Nutmeg's effects are unlikely to be felt until 2 to 5 hours after ingesting anywhere from one teaspoonful to a whole jar of the bitter, dry spice, according to the FDA. Talk about a buzz kill. Plus, the report suggests than any reports any effects supposedly felt within the first half hour are "factitious," read: make-believe.

Weil writes you're likely to fall asleep before any hallucinations take place, and then wake up "with many of the physical symptoms of toxicity: malais, headache, dry mouth, tachycardia, dizziness." In our words: The I-want-to-curl-up-in-complete-darkness-and-die hangover from hell, without feeling any of the mood-altering effects because you're too deep in your REM cycle.

Don't believe the hype about this "legal high." According to the FDA, "Visual hallucinations are less frequent with nutmeg than with drugs like LSD or mescaline, but distortions of time and space perception with feelings of unreality are common, as with Cannabis. Those who regularly smoke marihuana [sic] regard nutmeg as an inferior hallucinogen, largely because of the unpleasant side effects."

If you're planning on trying getting high on Nutmeg (which we do not recommend, support or encourage) know that the FDA reports "there is no apparent correlation between dose and psychoactive effect" but also concludes that one teaspoon is probably "insufficient to cause true symptoms." Good luck explaining to grandma why all her nutmeg is missing... while also nursing that awful cotton-mouth-nausea-headache-vertigo hangover.

We'll stick spiking our eggnog with rum and sprinkling a light dusting of nutmeg on top and suggest you wait it out 'til Prop 203's valid and have some incurable medical ailment rather than messing with this time-suck of an alternative.

Has anybody out there tried getting high on nutmeg? Any chance it'll help people deal with the relatives this week? Or will it just make life that much more unbearable as we suspect?

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