Saffron is an exotic spice that is known around the world due to its color, flavor, and medicinal properties. This treasured herb has been used by traditional healers to treat a range of health complaints and promote overall well-being. Check out its impressive health benefits below.
A Powerful Antioxidant
Saffron possesses powerful antioxidant effects that can help protect our body against the harmful effects of free radicals and oxidative stress.
Some of its known antioxidants are kaempferol, safranal, crocin, and crocetin.
According to a study, kaempferol can help reduce inflammation and has anticancer and antidepressant activity. On the other hand, safranal was found to be able to help improve learning ability, memory, and mood. Additionally, crocin and crocetin have antidepressant properties and can help reduce appetite, aid in weight loss, improve inflammation, and protect the brain.
Other Health Benefits of Saffron
May Boost Vision Health
In a study, safranal was found to be able to delay retinal degeneration. This important constituent of saffron can also reduce rod and cone photoreceptor loss and induce a mid-term, significant improvement in the retinal function in the case of age-related macular degeneration.
May Enhance Immunity
Being rich in carotenoids, saffron may help boost our immunity. A research revealed that daily use of saffron (about 100 mg)) could have temporary immunomodulatory effects without any adverse reactions.
May Have Cancer-Fighting Properties
Due to its powerful antioxidant, saffron may help neutralize free radicals that have been associated with chronic diseases, such as cancer.
In test-tube studies, researchers have found that saffron contains beneficial compounds that can selectively kill colon cancer cells or suppress their growth while leaving normal cells unharmed.
Aside from this, another study showed that saffron may also have positive effects on prostate, lung, breast, skin, bone marrow, cervix, and several other cancer cells.
May Improve Heart Function
Due to the presence of kaempferol, a molecule with potent heart-protecting effects, saffron may help boost heart function by increasing its pumping capacity.
Moreover, the crocin component of saffron was also found to be able to help reduce cholesterol levels and the hardening of blood vessels (atherosclerosis).
Can Help With Symptoms Of Diabetes
Saffron has been found to provide some benefits in diabetics. It increases glucose utilization and the uptake of glucose from the bloodstream. When given alongside insulin, saffron was found to enhance the activities of insulin and the responsiveness of the cell to insulin.
May Heal Burn Wounds
Its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties are responsible for saffron’s wound healing properties. It was found to be able to significantly increase re-epithelialization in burn wounds, according to a study. Due to these effects, researchers concluded that saffron may have the potential of accelerating wound healing in burn injuries.
Helps In Blood Pressure Regulation
In a study, results revealed that after 26 weeks of saffron supplementation, 230 men with infertility have significantly decreased their blood pressure.
Additionally, another study showed that saffron tablets reduced blood pressure in higher doses (400 mg) in 30 adults after one week.
Good For Asthma Patients
Saffron has been traditionally used to treat asthma attacks and spasms in the lungs. It works by decreasing inflammation in the lungs thus reducing asthmatic symptoms.