Saffaron is an spice derived from the flower of Crocus sativus one of the most expensive spices in the world. Cultivation and use of saffron spans more than 3,500 years. Cleopatra, as per certain texts, used saffron in her baths for its cosmetic properties. Egyptian healers used this spice for treating gastrointestinal ailments. And the Romans used it as a deodorizer.
Hippocrates (often regarded as the father of medicine), saffron is a wonderful treatment for colds and coughs, stomach issues, uterine bleeding, insomnia, flatulence, and even heart trouble. Saffron is extremely rich in manganese, which helps regulate blood sugar and aids the formation of bones, tissues, and sex hormones. It also contains vitamin C that fights infections and aids iron absorption. More interestingly, saffron contains over 150 volatile compounds. Most of saffron’s healthful qualities can be attributed to crocin, a compound in saffron. Even saffron milk has great things to offer. This spice, when combined with milk, can improve digestion and appetite, keep your skin healthy, and even enhance your immunity. Drinking saffron milk every day, especially before going to bed, can promote sound sleep.
The amazing healing and medicinal properties of saffron offer various benefits, some of the most important ones include prevention of serious ailments like cancer, improving respiratory and digestive health, and eliminating pain. Saffron is rich in carotenoids, which can contribute to its anticancer properties. Crocin in saffron can prevent breast cancer and leukemia. However, further research is warranted. As per a report by the American Council of Science and Health, crocetin (a carotenoid related to crocin) in saffron can block the proliferation of two types of human cancer. It achieves this by inhibiting an enzyme that is particularly active in cancer cells. Though this may not brand saffron as a superb anticancer food, the spice does hold great promise. Saffron supplementation to ongoing treatment was found to improve macular thickness in patients. This significantly improves retinal function. Saffron was also found to prevent photoreceptor damage induced by chronic oxidative injury. saffron can help in treating depression, and insomnia related to the condition.
Numerous studies show saffron to be effective in treating learning and memory impairments. In one such study, administering 30 mg of saffron a day showed improvement in the condition of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Also, crocin and ethanolic extracts of saffron displayed antidepressant effects in rodents. Saffron supplementation had also largely improved the mood of the subjects in another study. Saffron aqueous extract was well tolerated even by schizophrenic patients, with no serious side effects. Helps Cure Asthma,Reports throw light on saffron’s use for asthma since the ancient times. Traditional medicine has mentioned the use of saffron for this purpose
Saffron can also heal wounds, especially those caused by burns. The spice was found to increase re-epithelialization in burn wounds.
Due to its antioxidant properties, saffron helps maintain healthy arteries and blood vessels. And the spice’s anti-inflammatory properties also benefit the heart. Saffron is the richest source of riboflavin, an important vitamin for the heart. The crocetin in the spice indirectly regulates blood cholesterol levels and reduces the severity of atherosclerosis.
Saffron can also lower blood pressure, which otherwise would lead to heart attacks. Various sources state that saffron is also beneficial for improving blood flow, promoting cell formation and repair, and treating fever and toothache. But there is limited research available. Hence, talk to your doctor if you intend to use saffron for any of these ailments.
Saffron is beneficial to the male reproductive system as well, the crocin in saffron had improved mounting and erection frequencies in normal male rats. Similar effects are possible in humans too. Saffron is also effective on sperm morphology and motility in infertile men. Though it doesn’t increase the sperm count, it does help in the treatment of male infertility.