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9 Foods That Make You Hallucinate

| Reviewed By Sneha Krishnan

There is no doubt that foods can cause all sorts of emotions ranging from happiness to confusion. Despite making our tummies feel full and happy, there are certain foods that excite us, make us feel tired, cause bad dreams and other unexpected effects.

You will be surprised to know that there are some foods out there that can make you feel trippy after consuming it for a moment. Let us take a look at some of the most common foods items that can make you hallucinate.

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1. Nutmeg (Jaayphal)

Nutmeg contains an organic compound called myristicin that can make you feel dizzy and paranoid when taken in large quantities [1]. It could take about 5 to 15 grams, about 2 tablespoons of nutmeg to make you feel nauseous for 24 hours and hungover for days [2].

It has been mentioned that the high caused by nutmegs is loosely comparable to the effects of LSD

Side effects: Nausea, dry mouth, dizziness, irregular heartbeat, agitation and hallucinations. In some cases, it has caused death. Dr Sneha adds, "There are some notable drug interactions (like with antidepressants) and food products like wine and cheese when consumed in high quantities."

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2. Coffee

Coffee is another drink that can cause hallucination if consumed in large quantities (approx. seven cups of instant coffee). It is because of the caffeine present in it that makes you hallucinate [3]. Caffeine intoxication happens a lot sooner than you would actually think.

Seven cups of instant coffee contain a total of 315 milligrams of caffeine, according to studies [4].

Side effects: Insomnia, nervousness and restlessness, stomach upset, nausea and vomiting, increased heart and breathing rate

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3. Rye Bread

Rye bread contains a chemical that can make you feel trippy. It is because of the fungus ergot that appears on it, which contains strong psychoactive chemicals [5].

Side effects: Bloating, may be high in added sugar and contains antinutrients. Nausea and vomiting, muscle pains and can progress to gangrene, vision loss (mechanisms based on vasoconstriction).

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4. Poppy Seeds (Khasakhas)

Poppy seeds contain trace amounts of morphine not enough to cause psychological effects but when consumed in large amounts, it will knock your winds out [6]. This oilseed is obtained from the opium poppy, the fruit of the opium tree that is often processed to manufacture narcotics [7].

Side effects: Vomiting, swelling of the inside of the mouth, hives, eye swelling and breathing difficulty.

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5. Mulberries (Shahatoot)

Unripe mulberries can cause mild hallucinations [8]. The bok Tom Brown's Guide to Wild Edible and Medicinal Plants describes the psychedelic effects of a green berry-variation [9].

Side effects: Mild diarrhoea, dizziness, constipation, and bloating.

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6. Chilli Pepper (Laal mirch)

According to studies, chillies do not have any psychoactive compounds. However, consuming extremely hot foods such as chilli peppers can cause hallucinations as a mixture of panic caused by the pain and a rush of feel-good endorphins [10].

Side effects: It can cause squinting, sweating, diarrhoea, choking and vomiting.

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7. Sea Bream (Rani/Kandal meen/Navara)

A commonly consumed fish in southern parts of India, sea bream is a delicate white fish which can cause hallucinations. The hallucination effect comes from a substance called indole found in algae that the fish feeds on [11].

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8. Sage (Kamrkash/Samundarsok/Sathi)

Sage is a natural herb that is closely related to rosemary. It has a myriad of health benefits but it causes hallucinations as well. The leaves of the plant have psychoactive properties that activate when consumed by chewing, smoking or drinking as a tea [12]. The leaves contain opioid-like compounds that induce hallucinations [13].

Side effects: Mild digestive complaints, nausea, vomiting, agitation, wheezing, skin rash, high or low blood pressure, allergic reactions, and lowered blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.

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9. Stilton Cheese

Although not a common part of Indian cuisine, this variety of cheese has been known to cause psychedelic effects [14]. In a study conducted in 2005, it was reported 75 per cent of men and 85 per cent of women experienced unusual and odd dreams when they ate stilton cheese before sleep [15].

Side effects: It may cause digestive problems.

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On A Final Note…

Now that you are aware of the types of foods that can cause a high, you know what to steer clear of and to consume in limited quantities. Be aware that consuming the aforementioned foods in large quantities can lead to fatal outcomes.

Sneha KrishnanGeneral Medicine
MBBS
Sneha Krishnan
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