Benefits of saffron, the red gold.

Conscious TV

June 02, 2021

There is evidence of saffron as far back as 2300 BC. Egyptians, Greeks, Romans and the Arab world have all reported the use of this spice in connection with high society and refinement, from cooking to its use as a fabric dye or perfume in salons and spas.

It was the Arabs who introduced the crop to Europe. Saffron is a small orange strand with a bitter taste that forms in the pistil of a violet flower. It is very aromatic and gives off a bright yellow colour when mixed with meal. It is harvested in autumn and due to its laborious cultivation, harvesting and handling, it is quite expensive on the market. Saffron is an antioxidant, a great digestive and has antidepressant properties.

However, care must be taken not to overdo it, as in very high doses it turns sweat yellow and can cause symptoms of drunkenness, dizziness or headaches.

Properties and benefits of saffron

  • It is a great digestive: its bitter taste and the colouring it adds to many dishes stimulate gastric secretions.
  • It is depurative and prevents the appearance of gallstones. Some of its components are very beneficial for liver health.
  • It has balancing properties for the menstrual cycle: it soothes uterine cramps and promotes menstrual flow.
  • It is a powerful antioxidant. It contains "crocin", a substance that sequesters free radicals, helping to delay cellular ageing.
  • It improves memory and cognitive abilities: the high concentration of antioxidants makes it a fantastic food for balancing the effects of stress on the body.
  • It improves vision: the health of the retina and the flow of blood vessels in the eye.
  • Crocetin, the red component of saffron, also helps to lower cholesterol and prevent cardiovascular disease.
  • It is a natural antidepressant and its extract is used in some of these drugs. It also has calming and sedative properties, and its infusion helps to sleep better.
  • Anticarcinogenic: the concentrated presence of flavonoids and beta-carotene helps to delay tumour growth, extending life expectancy.