Uses of Saffron
Saffron, or Kesar, is one of the best herbal medicines.
It is derived from Crocus Sativus. The plant grows 15-20 tall with 6 to 10 leaves per branch and two purple flowers of 3.5 - 5 cm.
Each flower has a yellow style and bright red stigmata.
The stigmata of the flower are handpicked to make this spice.
In India, this spice is exclusively grown in Kashmir. Pampore, a tiny town in Kashmir, is known to be the Saffron town of India.
There are multiple legends about the origin of this spice.
Some believe it originated in Greece. As per research, it originated in Iran.
Stories have been woven around how it reached India. A popular legend suggests that Sufi saints brought it to Kashmir.
It is believed that a wandering Sufi saint was taken ill in Kashmir and cared for by a local man.
On recovering, the saint gifted the man a sapling of the crocus flower as a token of gratitude.
Others believe that the spice finds are mentioned in Vedic scriptures. Whatever the case, we got a delectable spice!
This spice is the most expensive in the world. The cultivation of this spice is time and labor-intensive.
The amount of labor, time, and dedication that goes into the cultivation of this spice justifies the price.
The stigmas are handpicked, dried, and packaged. Everything, right from planting to harvesting, is done manually.
It takes around 150,000 Sativus flowers to produce a kilogram of this spice.
After the harvest, the farm can't be used to produce any other crop until the next season.
Therefore the cost of producing this spice, both in terms of time and labor, is pretty high. That is why this spice costs a big buck.
As per Hippocrates, it contains many medicinal properties, and Saffron extract is an excellent treatment for colds, stomach issues, uterine infection, sleep deprivation, weight loss, and even heart issues.
Its threads contain a high amount of health benefits. It is helpful for those seeking treatment for reproductive problems such as erectile dysfunction and PMS.
Lowering cancer risk and cancer cells.
Crocetin and Crocin are the two main antioxidants present. Many studies suggest that Saffron has anti-tumor elements.
Its antioxidants help combat the oxidative stress caused by the free radicals present in the body.
Other studies indicate that it can work as an effective anti-cancer agent. The Crocin present in it is thought to help treat cancer.
But we need a vast amount of research to study the effect of the saffron crocus.
Arthritis and inflammation.
The carotenoid Crocin present in it increases the oxygen flow to the brain. Thus, it helps treat arthritis.
This spice comprises flavonoids, tannins, alkaloids, and saponins, which are excellent anti-inflammatory agents.
Thus, a saffron supplement can help make your bones strong.
For improving vision
Many studies show that the Safranal present in this red spice delays the wear and tear of the retina.
Safranal may also reduce rod loss and photoreceptor lump, which prove useful in delaying retinal damage due to age.
Safranal also helps in age-related macular degeneration.
For insomnia, those sleepless nights.
Crocin in this spice is said to improve sleep. Some studies suggest that Crocetin in kesar may significantly enhance the non-REM type of sleep.
For Blood Pressure
It has some medicinal components which are beneficial for your heart and controls blood pressure.
This element is Crocetin which helps lower cholesterol levels in the blood.
Atherosclerosis is a disease in which sludge builds up in the arteries of your heart. The effect of Crocus sativus is such that it stops the build-up of sludge.
As a result, your heart health improves.
For mental health
The antioxidant agents and anti-inflammatory elements present in this spice may prove helpful in treating many neural disorders.
Kashmiri spice comprises beneficial elements in treating Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases.
This spice is also said to improve mood. It is thought to help treat mild depression.
Research suggests that this spice may improve memory in animals. But we need more research in this area.
This spice improves epithelization. Epithelization leads to the healing of bruises on your body.
Thus, this spice helps heal your scratches, bruises, and wounds.
Using this spice as a cream or lotion is more helpful.
Best for anxiety
Kashmiri Keshar has carotenoids that help relax your mind.
Some research shows that consuming around 100 grams of iron with small amounts of this spice can help manage anxiety without major side effects.
Tonic for heart
Riboflavin and thiamine are two elements that help keep up a solid heart. These elements packed in this spice also help prevent many other diseases.
Crocetin present in this spice helps in the control of cholesterol.
It contains elements that help advance the count and mobility of sperms in impotent men.
The aphrodisiac-like properties of this spice are thought to improve sexual wellness by increasing sexual drive and libido.
This spice is also said to reduce pain in women during intercourse.
Protects you from UV rays
This spice contains flavonoids, which shield you from UV rays. Thus, it may shield your skin from sunburns.
But it would be best to be careful when using this spice on your skin. Using too much of it may leave a yellow shade on your skin.
For mild to moderate depression
Our fast and stressful life is now causing body and mental health problems. Finding a cure for your body is very easy but finding a cure for your mind is very difficult.
Ayurveda suggests that Kesar may help cure mental health problems. The stigma of this spice has specific properties which may help treat depression.
It may help in treating major depressive episodes.
This spice contains two important elements: Crocetin and Safranal. These elements are thought to manage the secretion of dopamine and serotonin, two elements that improve mood.
Using this spice is not difficult. We have a list of some simple ways that would help you include this in your diet.
Saffron powder: You can make powder at home instead of buying it. Pound some strands/ threads of this spice.
If you think it's difficult to process the strands because of the dampness, add a little sugar and pound. Adding sugar will make blending simpler.
Saffron liquid: You may make liquid of this spice by adding three to five teaspoons of water to the powder of this herb spice and letting it soak for 10 minutes. Store this liquid, and you are set for half a month.
Saffron milk: You need three ingredients: a cup of milk, a little keshar, and two teaspoons of sugar. Mix sugar and this spice in your milk, and voila!
Adding sugar to your kesar milk is optional. You may skip the step if you desire.
A popular legend dictates that this spice helps improve the baby's skin if a pregnant mother consumes it during pregnancy.
It is widely known as an appetite booster. However, it is ideal to counsel your dietitian before consuming it during pregnancy.
The regular consumption of this spice starting from the 5th month of pregnancy is considered safe.
Consuming it during pregnancy raises body heat, which leads to consistent uterine contractions.
Consumption of this spice is thought to initiate contraction, but it may cause early and unsuccessful labor in critical cases.
Specialists say you should eat just one strand a day. More than one may result in risky and preterm delivery.
Even if it has high dietary benefits, you must practice caution when consuming this spice during pregnancy.
This spice can be consumed in several ways during pregnancy. You can soak it in water, powder it, or mix it with soup and food.
The best option to have this spice during pregnancy is to add it to your soup.
One must be careful while consuming this spice during pregnancy. If consumed in a large amount, it may cause preterm childbirth.
Be safe while consuming this delicious spice during pregnancy.
A few indicators determine the quality of this spice. However, not many are aware of these indicators.
Some sellers take advantage of consumers' naivety and end up scamming them into buying an inferior product at a ridiculously high price.
The following are some things you should know before you buy.
a. Stigma and style
The purest of all, Kesar, is the one that contains just the stigma of the flower. Including the style of the flower is a common practice. However, some sellers scam their buyers by adding other parts of the Crocus Sativa flower.
Make sure your product contains nothing but the stigma and style of the flower.
b. Picrocrocin, Safranal, and Crocin levels
Picrocrocin, Safranal, and Crocin determine the spice's color, aroma, and flavor. The quality of the grade is determined by the levels of these elements in the spice.
The levels of these elements are tested in the laboratory. High levels of these elements are an indicator of better quality. Make sure you enquire about these elements before buying.
The grade of this spice decides its quality. Grades range from A+ to B.
Grade 1 A+ Stigmas only. It is often known as 'All Red.'
Grade 2 A It includes the yellow-white style ends of the stigma along with the stigmas.
Grade 3 B It includes the entire style and the stigma, all attached.
We, at alphonsomango. In, offer the finest Grade 1 (A+) quality, Saffron.
This is an expensive spice whose sale witnesses many malpractices. You can ensure you buy the most authentic and exorbitant quality without being conned or scammed with this information.
Side effects of this spice
- Overdose. This spice is safe for all, but caution must be exercised. Consuming high doses of this may be dangerous. Consuming more than 5 grams of this red spice may prove poisonous. Consuming more than 30 mg of Saffron may lead to hallucinogenic effects.
- Pregnancy. It is advised to avoid this, kesar products, or keshar supplements when pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Allergies: Avoid consuming this spice if you are allergic to it. Avoid it if you are allergic to certain plants such as Salsola, Lolium, and Olea.
- This spice has an impact on mood. Thus, those with bipolar disorder should be cautious when consuming this spice.
- Low blood pressure: this spice lowers blood pressure. Thus, those with hypotension should exercise caution.
It is among the most favorite flavors. Adding a moderate quantity to your diet adds flavor and offers some medical advantages.