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July 4, 1966

Underneath The Nutmegge Tree

Author Affiliations

Bloomington, Hawaii

JAMA. 1966;197(1):63. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03110010115042

To the Editor:—  Did you know that nutmeg and peach trees are similar in design, although not in the edibility of their fruits? Peach stones are thrown away, but the dried kernel of the nut of the nutmeg tree Myristica fragrans which groweth on the isle of Molucca is a widely used remedy for the cup custard, and the egge-nogge.In the more romantic past, pharmacopeias included nutmeg and its oils as a carminative, or as an odorkiller in ointments, noting that in large doses nutmeg excites the motor cortex and produces a species of epileptiform convulsion. Still, nutmeg parties were unusual, and the toxic properties not sought as a relief for ennui of the young.Now the whole situation has changed! Some California scientists have discovered that nutmeg contains psychotropic substances. Morning glory, peyotl, mescal, and tlitliltzen are joined by nutmeg! (Nature210:380, 1966). Nutmeg snuffs are secretly

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