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Nutmeg is the nut and mace the aril (a fiber covering the nutshell) of Myristica fragrans, an evergreen tree that grows wild in parts of South India. A Portuguese physician found nutmegs growing luxuriantly in Indian soil some centuries back, but those that grow there now are M. malabarica, which lacks the delicate aroma of the other species. Nutmeg and mace are effectively interchangeable (pungent, bitter and astringent, hot and pungent after digestion; reduce vata and kapha, and increase pitta) as spices and are commonly used in medicine to calm the nerves for the lower abdomen. Jatiphaladi Churna, literally 'Nutmeg Etc. Powder', which actually has less nutmeg than it has cannabis, is an exceptional remedy for diarrhoea, dysentery, sprue and other intestinal dysfunctions. On its own nutmeg can control, though not necessarily cure, almost any from of diarrhoea. It is given with buttermilk for diarrhoea and with milk to induce sleep and control premature ejaculation. Its power has also been used to treat urinary incontinence and it is an ingredient in many aphrodisiac mixtures.

Ayurveda Life Health and Longevity by Robert E. Svoboda - Penguin Books.