Friday, December 25, 2009

Did you get an amphetamine high over Christmas?

It would appear that spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon, clove and anise have precursors to amphetamine in them. Amphetamine makes you feel perky and mentally more alert. It is in the same family as methamphetamin, or P as it is commonly known as.

It is hypothesized  that the cooking process might takes these compounds and turn them into amphetamine! Thus giving you a natural high and helps you feel good when you eat products that are high in these spices. 

This might explain why I really enjoy aniseed, both aniseed wheels and liquorish, which ironically often has very little liquorish root and lots of aniseed. I also enjoy nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves. I wonder if we could somehow cook these spices then take them and make alcoholic drink like a liqueur out of them thus getting two types of "high".  

However it can't be ruled out that the smell of these spices are associated with pleasant memories so the smell of the spices, not the amphetamine makes you feel good. Either way this is a great excuses to use more of these wonderful spices. 

Photo credit: Michelle Meiklejohn

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