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Here the potential health benefits of saffron.
  • Powerful Antioxidant. …
  • Treat Depressive Symptoms and Improves Mood. …
  • Cancer-Fighting Properties. …
  • Reduce PMS Symptoms. …
  • Boosts Libido. …
  • Reduces Appetite and Enhance Weight Loss. …
  • Reduces Blood Pressure and Prevents Heart Diseases.
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SAFFRON/ ZAFFFRAN Nutrition facts

Nutritional Properties of Saffron

Saffron has a wide variety of plant compounds that act as antioxidants. Major saffron antioxidants include crocin, crocetin, safranal and kemperanol. As per studies, they protect your cells against both free radicals and oxidative stress.

Crocin and crocetin are carotenoid pigments. They are colour giving pigment for saffron. Both the compounds have antidepressant properties. Safranal gives saffron its unique taste and aroma.

Saffron contains the following nutrients per 100 grams.

  • Calcium- 111 milligrams
  • Iron- 11.1 mg
  • Potassium- 1724mg
  • Total fat- 6 g
  • Cholesterol- 0 gm
  • Sodium- 148
  • Potassium- 1724 mg
  • Dietary fibre- 3.9mg
  • Protein- 11gm

Vitamins and Minerals (Required Daily Intake)  

  • Iron- 61%
  • Vitamin C- 134%
  • Vitamin B6- 50%
  • Magnesium- 66%
  • Calcium- 11%

Health Benefits of Saffron

Saffron has a strong aroma and a beautiful colour. Ayurveda celebrates saffron as a natural sedative and expectorant. It is a rich source of antioxidants with numerous health benefits.

Moreover, saffron plays a vital role in asthmatic treatment. It is an emmenagogue and apoptogenic agent. Hence including natural immunity boosters like saffron in your daily diet may help. Saffron is a storehouse of carminative, diaphoretic and aphrodisiac properties.

In ancient times, people used saffron in opioid preparations as an analgesic or painkiller. Studies state that saffron elevates mood, fight oxidative stress. Saffron is generally safe to consume across all ages within the prescribed doses.

Saffron contains the following pigments:  

  • Crocin
  • Crocetin
  • Picrococin
  • Safranal

The benefits and uses of saffron are prominent due to the presence of these compounds.

Carotenoids like crocin and crocetin are responsible for saffron’s red colour. They have antidepressant properties. Studies suggest that they also protect brain cells against progressive damage, improve inflammation, reduce appetite, and aid weight loss.

Kaempferol in saffron flower petals has several health benefits. For example, it reduces inflammation, has anti-cancer properties, and works as an antidepressant.

Lastly, safranal helps give saffron its distinct aroma and taste. Moreover, research shows that it helps improve your memory and learning ability and enhances your mood. It also protects your brain cells against oxidative stress.

Here, let us evaluate more about the potential health benefits of saffron.

1. Powerful Antioxidant

Saffron contains various plant compounds, which act as antioxidants. These antioxidants include crocin, crocetin, safranal and kaempferol. They help protect your cells against oxidative stress and free radicals.

2. Treat Depressive Symptoms and Improves Mood

The “sunshine spice” saffron elevates your mood. It is due to safranal, which is an antioxidant. Many supplements use saffron as it is effective for treating mild-to-moderate depression. In addition, there are no side effects such supplement based treatments.

3. Cancer-Fighting Properties

Saffron is full of antioxidants. It neutralises the destructive free radicals. These free radicals lead to the production of tumours, which may cause cancer. Studies suggest that chronic inflammation and oxidative stress are the major causes of age-related diseases and cancer.

The antioxidants in saffron target and suppress cancer cells, especially on the colon, skin, prostate, lung, etc. They inhibit their growth by securing healthy cells.

4. Reduce PMS Symptoms

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a collective term for a series of physical, emotional, and psychological imbalances. Symptoms manifest before the onset of a menstrual period. Saffron may help curtail the PMS symptoms.

Scientific observations state that 30 mg of daily intake of saffron is more effective than the placebo treatment. Moreover, the cortisol (stress hormone) levels reduce, curtailing anxiety.

5. Boosts Libido

As per studies, supplements with herbal aphrodisiacs boost your libido. Saffron may have aphrodisiac properties for both men and women. Therefore, regular intake of prescribed saffron may significantly improve erectile function. It is effective, especially for those under antidepressant medication.

6. Reduces Appetite and Enhance Weight Loss

The dietary fibre in saffron makes you feel full for longer. Therefore, people consuming saffron supplements feel significantly full. Also, the dietary fibre reduces appetite and curtails unhealthy snacking. As a result, it prevents you from binge eating and enhances weight loss.

7. Reduces Blood Pressure and Prevents Heart Diseases 

As per research, the antioxidants in saffron can reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. The flavonoids, especially lycopene, found in saffron can provide added protection.

Saffron is rich in potassium. Hence, regular intake of saffron aids in dilating the blood vessels. It further eliminates blockage from your arteries. So, saffron lowers your blood pressure to prevent cardiac arrests and strokes.

study shows that the people of the Mediterranean region who consume saffron as a part of a regular diet report lesser cases of heart diseases. It may be due to saffron’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It also has cholesterol-lowering benefits. In addition, the presence of crocetin decreases the bad or harmful cholesterol in your blood.

It also prevents the clogging of fat deposits in blood vessels and arteries. Therefore, it lowers your risks of heart attacks or associated cardiac disorders. Saffron also boosts your immunity.

8. Subsides the Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease

Research highlights the effectiveness of saffron in combating Alzheimer’s. It shows that a regular intake of saffron supplements leads to better cognitive function in people with Alzheimer’s. The antioxidant properties avert the accumulation of beta-amyloid protein in your brain.

9. Reduce Blood Sugar Levels in Diabetics

As per research, the saffron hydroalcoholic extract may improve blood glucose control by reducing fasting blood sugar in T2D patients. However, it has no significant effect on other aspects of diabetic control in diabetics. Saffron may elevate insulin sensitivity.

10. Improves Eyesight

Several observations show that saffron refines eyesight in adults with a history of age-related macular degeneration disorder (AMD). Furthermore, the antioxidant properties in saffron protect against free radical damage associated with AMD.

11. Skin Care Benefits

Apart from its culinary uses, saffron possesses various beauty benefits. The anti-inflammatory ingredient nurtures to impart a blemish-free radiance to your skin. Therefore, several beauty creams and other cosmetic products use saffron as their primary ingredient. It gives the skin a glowing touch and makes it soft and supple. Like all other benefits, it is also due to saffron’s antioxidant properties. Saffron can act as a topical applicant for:

  • Skin lightening and texture
  • Pigmentation
  • Scar healing
  • Cure for blemishes and acne
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