header glossary of supplements

A plant-based spice and supplement, saffron is used for a multitude of discomforts and diseases as well as appetite control and weight loss. Studies have shown that it can have a positive effect on Alzheimer’s patients by inhibiting the growth of a specific protein. It is also used to quiet PMS symptoms, like bloating, cramping and irritability.

saffron

Photo Credit: Kelly Cheng Travel Photography via Getty Images

Saffron is widely used as an appetite suppressant because of its ability to enhance a person’s mood, giving them a “satisfied” feeling. It isn’t a stand-alone weight-loss solution since research shows a healthy diet and modified snacking habits are needed to achieve weight loss.

Although it often referred to as a spice, it is rarely used in the kitchen because it’s so expensive. Think thousands of dollars per pound. Its sultry red coloring is appropriate for its link to aphrodisiac qualities, though. Research shows it has the ability to relax blood vessels throughout the body while focusing a pressure to the downstairs region.

>> Read more: Cupid Says, Let’s Talk Aphrodisiac Foods

Because of this vascular ability, it is also used for mental health issues like depression and bipolar disorder. In fact, a study showed its effects are almost as powerful as Prozac, minus the side effects. Side effects of saffron include dizziness, dry mouth, nausea or headache, and can lower blood pressure as well as potentially change your heart rate. If nursing or pregnant, avoid this supplement.

Saffron extract is available in capsule form and the recommended dosage is 30 milligrams per day, usually broken up into two 15-milligram doses. The medicinal extract is very affordable.