Saffron is a popular spice that can be acquired from a flower called the Saffron Coccus. The stigma of this plant is dried and processed into most valuable spice in the world.
The unique organic composition of Saffron makes it a powerful addition to your diet, as it contains more than 150 volatile compounds including carotenoids, safranals, crocin, antioxidants and other biochemicals as well as minerals and vitamins that are essential to human health.
The most common form of saffron is in dried form. Only a small amount of spice is necessary to have an effect, and the maximum that should be consumed in a day is 0.5 gm to 1 gm of this valuable spice.
Saffron can be applied topically for massage, in broths, hot drinks or pills.
Saffron contains Vitamin C as ascorbic acid, which is so important for human health. It stimulates the immune system production of white blood cells, the body’s first line of defense against illness.
Also vitamin C is crucial to the production of Collagens, which is necessary for cellular production in the body, and contributes to wound healing, muscle growth, blood vessel repair and tissue production.
Saffron can function as an effective energy booster and can increase your metabolism by increasing your blood circulation, the high concentration of iron stimulates circulation and oxygenation of the organ systems and body’s extremities. This improves efficiency and functionality of our tissue and organ systems for healthier metabolic activity and prevents the symptoms of anemia.
Blood pressure and heart health:
A simple way to improve your heart health is to increase your potassium intake, potassium acts as a vasodilator, effectively lowering the stress and pressure on blood vessels and arteries allowing blood pressure to decrease and relieving strain on the cardiovascular system. This can prevent things like atherosclerosis, heart attacks and strokes from occurring.
The significant levels of manganese can help the body to optimize its blood sugar levels. By regulating your blood sugar insulin and glucose levels you can effectively prevent the onset of type II diabetes or manage the symptoms if you are already suffering from their affliction.
Mood and anxiety:
Saffron has been known to relieve mild depression and improve mood in those who regularly consume it. The many active compounds in saffron have some effect on endocrine system and can stimulate the release of beneficial hormones that keep us happy and healthy.
It has been hailed as a natural antidepressant by numerous researches, studies and organizations.
Some of the minerals and organic compounds in saffron have been linked to optimize nutrient uptake, particularly of calcium.
By maximizing the amount of calcium that our body can absorb from food, we have a better chance of improving bone mineral density and preventing the onset of conditions like osteoporosis, and other degenerative age related diseases.
The high amount of vitamin B 6 found in saffron spice can help our nervous system running smoothly and prevent some of the deadly and dangerous disorders that arise from poor nervous system function.
The volatile compound safranol is saffron acts as a sedative for many patients. The sedative action can help to relieve pain, reduce anxiety, sleep pattern and generally sooth the mind and body.
There are dozens of different antioxidant compounds found in saffron, many of which seek out and neutralize free radicals, the dangerous byproducts of cellular metabolism, which can cause cells to mutate or die. This boosts the general health of the immune system, but more specifically, can prevent cancer from developing or spreading in the body.
One of the oldest and most well-known uses of saffron is for upset stomachs and excess flatulence. The sedative and anti-inflammatory nature of saffron helps to calm the stomach and reduce inflammation, which eases things like constipation, bloating, cramping and more serious conditions like gastric ulcers.
As a topical tool used in massage, saffron oil and creams derived from the flower’s compounds, can eliminate aches and pains throughout the body and discomfort.
For people suffering from sports injuries, arthritis, gout, and other inflammatory conditions, this is a wonderful remedy.
A word of warning:
Consuming saffron in high doses can be potentially dangerous, as the high concentration of active ingredients can have a range of effects on the body. However, in small doses (such as in meals or in pill supplement for).
Saffron is not known to have any common side effects or allergenic properties.
Some side effects that have been reported include dry mouth, dizziness, nausea, anxiety, fatigue, and appetite changes, but these are rare.
Saffron Nutritional Value
Saffron (Crocus sativus), Nutritional value per 100 g.
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)