Spices (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg)

Our rating
 Question mark: This treatment has not been properly researched. It is not possible to say whether they are useful or not.

What does this rating mean?

The rating system

  • 3 smiliesThese treatments are very useful. They are strongly supported as effective by scientific evidence.
  • 2 smiliesThese treatments are useful. They are supported by scientific evidence as effective, but the evidence is not as strong.
  • 1 smileyThese treatments are promising and may be useful. They have some evidence to support them, but more evidence is needed to be sure they work.
  • No smiley On the available evidence, these treatments do not seem to be effective.
  • Question markThese treatments have not been properly researched. It is not possible to say whether they are useful or not.
  • These treatments are not recommended and could be dangerousSafety or other concerns have been raised for the use of these treatments.

What is it?

Some people believe that common spices such as cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg can enhance mood. These spices are commonly used in cooking, but can also be found in some supplements, oils and aromatherapy products.

How does it work?

It is unclear how spices could enhance mood.

Is it effective?

There is no scientific evidence on the use of spices to treat depression.

Are there any disadvantages?

As with all dietary supplements, taking spices as a supplement could have negative interactions with prescribed medications or other supplements. They should always be taken under the supervision of a health care professional. It is possible that large doses of spices could cause side effects or have toxic effects.

Where do you get it?

Common spices such as cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg can be purchased from supermarkets.

Recommendation

Given the lack of evidence on spices, they cannot be recommended as a treatment for depression.

Last updated and reviewed: 1 November 2019