Dispelling nutrition myths, ranting, and occasionally, raving


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The perils of nutmeg

This time of year nutmeg is frequently used in baking and added to beverages such as eggnog and mulled cider. While fine in small quantities, nutmeg can actually be toxic in larger amounts (1). As a child I remember my mother insisting we only put a very small pinch of nutmeg on our eggnog as her father was a doctor and had warned her of the dangers of excessive consumption. I’m not sure if it’s widespread knowledge that over-consumption of nutmeg can lead to hallucinations, illness, and in some cases even death so I thought that I would bring it to your attention.

Nutmeg is the seed of the¬†Myristica¬†tree. The covering of the nutmeg seed is another spice “mace”. Despite many claims regarding the health benefits of nutmeg there is no evidence to support the use of nutmeg for treatment or prevention of any illnesses. Especially considering the risks associated with excess consumption of nutmeg, it’s probably best to limit your nutmeg consumption to the occasional treat.


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Some like it hot

Happy Hot and Spicy Food Day! I know not everybody loves spicy food but I do and it’s my blog so…

Adding spice to foods is a great way to add flavour without adding fat or calories. Besides the usual salsas and Mexican fare, which you might expect to be spicy, you can add spices in unexpected places too. Spicy and sweet is a great combo. Try adding sprinkling chili powder on mango slices, dark chocolate and chili is another surprisingly good combo. While not exactly hot, cinnamon can make a great addition when trying to wean yourself off added sugars. Try sprinkling it in your coffee or espresso-based beverage or on your cereal or oatmeal.

Besides making your food taste better, adding spices may provide additional heart health and anti-bacterial benefits.

Remember that spices will lose their potency over time. To keep them fresh as long as possible, store in a metal tin in a cool dry place or keep them in the fridge.