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Nutritional and Health Benefits of Mace or Javitri

 The net-like aril, or seed-covering, of the nutmeg.
The net-like aril, or seed-covering, of the nutmeg. | Source

About Mace

Mace is called javitri in Hindi. It is a spice which is obtained from the Myristica fragrans tree whose seed is the nutmeg. Mace is the net-like extra seed covering that covers the nutmeg's seed coat.

Though there are other species of Myristica, the nutmeg tree, like M.argentia, M.malabarica and M.fatua which are cultivated for their nutmeg fruit, these are inferior to those obtained from the M.fragrans tree in terms of both flavour and aroma.

Mace has a higher concentration of the same essential oils that are present in nutmeg and therefore has a more intense flavour. It is, therefore, much more expensive than nutmeg. The fully ripe fruit splits open on its own, revealing the mace-covered nutmeg seed.

The spice mace, a crimson red colored thread like material that envelops the nutmeg, is removed carefully and then usually dried under the sun for a few days, before it is sold, either as whole blades or ground to a fine powder before selling. Compared to the nutmeg, mace should be added at the beginning of cooking to allow its full flavor to develop,

Mace is spicy in taste, somewhat like a combination of pepper and cinnamon, with a strong aroma. To prepare it at home, first clean the mace, and then roast the whole mace till crisp. Cool and then grind it.

Mace and nutmeg are native to the Banda islands of Indonesia.

Nutritional Information

Mace contains exceptionally high amounts of the minerals copper and iron providing 274% & 174% of the daily requirements of these minerals per 100 grams.

With several vitamins like vitamins A, C, B1, B2 and minerals like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese and zinc also present in good amounts, Javitri along with its several essential volatile oils like safrole, myristicin, elemicin and eugenol and the fixed oil trimyristine is a very healthy spice.

See the detailed table below for its entire nutrient content and concentration.

Nutrients Levels in Mace

 
Mace spice (Myristica fragrans), Ground,
 
 
Nutritional value per 100 g.
 
 
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
 
Principle
Nutrient Value
Percentage of RDA
Energy
475 Kcal
24%
Carbohydrates
50.50 g [≈ Mass equivalent of the energy that is called 1 megaton of TNT equivalent]
39%
Protein
6.71 g
12%
Total Fat
32.38 g
162%
Cholesterol
0 mg
0%
Dietary Fiber
20.2 g
54%
Vitamins
 
 
Folates
76 mcg
19%
Niacin
1.350 mg
8%
Pyridoxine
0.160 mg
12%
Riboflavin
0.448 mg
34%
Thiamin
0.312 mg
26%
Vitamin-A
800 IU
27%
Vitamin C
21 mg
35%
Electrolytes
 
 
Sodium
80 mg
5%
Potassium
463 mg
10%
Minerals
 
 
Calcium
252 mg
25%
Copper
2.467 mg
274%
Iron
13.90 mg
174%
Magnesium
163 mg
41%
Manganese
1.500 mg
65%
Phosphorus
110 mg
30%
Zinc
2.15 mg
20%

Parts of the Nutmeg Fruit and Seed

Nutmeg tree fruit.
Nutmeg tree fruit. | Source
The opened nutmeg fruit, with the mace enclosing the seed.
The opened nutmeg fruit, with the mace enclosing the seed. | Source

Medicinal Properties of Mace

According to Ayurveda, mace has the following medicinal properties:

  • pungent, bitter & astringent in taste
  • hot in constitution
  • mucolytic, therefore removes mucus
  • balances Vata & Kapha doshas
  • mildly anthelmintic
  • ruchikrut, meaning it improves taste & appetite
  • varnakrut, meaning it improves skin tone & complexion
  • hrudya, meaning it is a tonic for the heart

Mace also has anti bacterial, antiviral, anti cancer, anti inflammatory, anti-diabetes, and hepatoprotective activities

Health Benefits

  • Traditional Indian & Chinese medicine have used mace to treat nervous system issues as it calms the brain and also stimulates it. The compounds myristicin and elemicin provide these benefits.
  • The eugenol in mace relieves toothache.
  • Massage with medicated oil of Javitri is beneficial when the limbs or the body gets cold sensations.
  • Improves libido and prevents premature ejaculation.
  • Applied on the forehead as a paste it relieves insomnia.
  • Apply a paste made with milk to alleviate pimples and give the face a glow.
  • Relieves dysmenorrheal pain in women.
  • Benefits in colds, cough and asthma. Useful in dry cough as well.
  • Improves skin tone & complexion.
  • Relieves tiredness and fatigue.
  • Reduces nausea and vomiting.
  • Relieves loose motions, gas, flatulence and digestive tract infections.
  • Applied externally as mace oil it relieves rheumatic pains and eczema.

Uses

Mace is used in mashed potato and rice dishes. It is also used in tea and masala milk, in preparation of sweet dishes like custard puddings, cakes, cookies and food items like bread, sauce, ketchup, curries and pickles.

It is much used in meat and bean stews, broths and soups.

Javitri imparts a light saffron color to the dishes it is added to and is also one of the ingredients of the Indian spice mix, the garam masala powder.

Mace is also much used in aphrodisiac preparations.

Most American hot dogs contain ground mace.

How to Remove Mace from Nutmeg Easily

© 2016 Rajan Singh Jolly

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Comments 12 comments

manatita44 profile image

manatita44 10 months ago from london

Super excellent! Right from the beginning, it took me straight back home. My mother passed three years ago, and I visited the village where I was born. I was dying so much to visit the 'lands?' Alas! Not enough time. How I miss the nutmeg, the mango, the banana and coconut trees!

I like both your videos. In fact, the first was like a lesson for me. How quickly we forget! If I can share a little with you, I use to literally run up the nutmeg and mango trees. Not so long ago, I attempted to climb a mango tree outside my hotel in Seracunda, Gambia, and I really struggled. I was so scared!

So you call the mace Javitri? Interesting. Well done, short, succinct and charming.


ChitrangadaSharan profile image

ChitrangadaSharan 10 months ago from New Delhi, India

Very interesting and informative hub!

I use Javitri and Nutmeg regularly in my kitchen. Besides its pleasant aroma they have amazing health benefits. Well presented hub and Very informative videos too.

Excellent hub as always on Indian spices. Thanks for sharing!


billybuc profile image

billybuc 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

There you go again, educating me and trying to make me healthier. lol Thank you, my friend. Your articles are, indeed, helpful.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 10 months ago from The Caribbean

Never knew of the connection between nutmeg and mace; never heard of net like aril, let alone see a picture. Very informative! Thanks for the list of nutrients.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 10 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

@manatita, as children most of us here have climbed mango and other trees though today like you it would be an uphill task for ma too. Change is life and we cannot hope to remain as agile as the day before.

I'm glad my hub stirred up good memories for you. Thank you for visiting my hub.

@Chitrangada, Indians have been using these and many other spices on almost a daily, rather a meal to meal, basis and this most possibly is the reason we live healthier for long.

Thanks for appreciating the hub and I welcome your visit here.

@Bill, to go natural on foods is my motto now and hence this series on healthy foods. I much appreciate your kind comments and visit.

Thank you, my friend.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 10 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

MsDora, I'm glad this hub provided you with some new information. I know it always feels good on learning something new. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.


DDE profile image

DDE 10 months ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

A unique spice and I have not heard of it. Sounds a useful spice.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 10 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Thanks for stopping by Devika.


Surabhi Kaura profile image

Surabhi Kaura 10 months ago from Toronto, Canada

Nani ji used to talk about this. Aaj dekh bhi liya :) Thanks, Rajan ji. Have a pleasant day!


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 10 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

We do learn a lot of things from our elders, don't we, Surabhi? Thanks for visiting my hub and hope you have a great day too!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 7 months ago from USA

Ive learned a lot from this -- mace in hotdogs and that it comes from a fruit (I sure had no idea). Very educational.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 7 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Thank you Flourish.

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