Saffron, known as Kesar in Ayurveda, is a widely cultivated herb in India. It is known to relieve respiratory disorders, manage problems related to the reproductive system and improve skin health. It contains an ample amount of antioxidants and nutrients like vitamin A, folic acid, vitamin B12, copper, iron, calcium, potassium, manganese, magnesium and zinc, all of which make it an unparalleled herb for boosting health and vitality.
Saffron: An Overview of Its Ayurvedic Properties
According to Ayurveda, saffron or Kesar has Katu (pungent) and Tikta (bitter) taste and exhibits Snigdha (slimy) quality. It is known to pacify all the three Doshas in the body and is therefore beneficial for everyone.
The Many Health Benefits of Saffron Backed by Ayurveda
- Boosts Immunity
Saffron is powered with potent antioxidants that help enhance immunity and fight various diseases such as cough, cold, flu, fever, etc. It also helps balance all three Doshas and remove harmful toxins from the body, further boosting immunity and keeping diseases and disorders at bay.
- Improves Eye Health
Enriched with the power of carotenoids like crocin and crocetin, saffron helps protect retinal cells and restore the ones damaged by oxidative stress caused due to macular degeneration. Saffron is also known to protect the photoreceptor cells of the retina that often get damaged due to continued exposure to intense light.
- Supports Heart Health
Substantially loaded with antioxidants, saffron helps improve the pumping capacity of the heart and its overall functioning. Potassium found in saffron is also known to dilate blood vessels and lower blood pressure levels in the body, thereby preventing heart attacks and strokes. Furthermore, saffron helps reduce cholesterol levels and lower the risk of coronary heart disease in the body.
- Boosts Mental Health
Rich in vitamin B12, saffron helps maintain mental health and prevent mental ailments like schizophrenia, depression, seizures and convulsions. In addition, crocin and safranal found in saffron help stimulate happy hormones like serotonin and dopamine, which further relieves anxiety and depression. Saffron is also highly beneficial in boosting brain performance and improving memory.
- Enhances Reproductive Health
Blessed with strong aphrodisiac properties, saffron helps improve libido, treat infertility and age-related sexual dysfunction in both men and women. In addition, saffron is also highly effective in treating menstrual problems such as irregular cycles, painful periods etc. It helps to regulate hormonal balance and reduce PMS symptoms.
- Lowers Inflammation
The anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties of saffron make it one of the best herbs to treat pain, swelling and stiffness in the body. Crocin found in saffron is known to reduce the levels of pro-inflammatory markers and revitalise the damaged cartilage and bone, thereby aiding in the treatment of osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, etc.
- Controls Blood Sugar Levels
Saffron improves insulin sensitivity and controls high blood sugar levels in the body, thereby preventing and managing diabetes effectively.
- Augments Skin and Hair Health
Saffron is one of the best herbs you can take for your skin. It helps protect the skin against sun damage, give a natural glow to your skin and fight skin disorders like acne, blemishes, eczema, skin infections, etc. The antioxidants present in saffron are also known to repair damaged hair follicles and enhance hair growth while preventing abnormal hair loss.
- Improves Digestive System
Rich in carminative and anti-inflammatory properties, saffron makes an effective remedy to relieve numerous gastrointestinal disorders such as gastritis, colitis, peptic ulcers, etc. In addition, the neuro-calming effects of saffron help alleviate anxiety, which is one of the leading causes of irritable bowel syndrome.
- Prevents Fatigue
In Ayurveda, saffron is used to prevent fatigue, improve energy levels, increase muscular strength and reinvigorate vital tissues in the body. It also helps increase haemoglobin levels in the blood and treat anaemia.
Saffron Milk: An Ayurvedic Remedy That Is Also Tasty
Although you can use saffron in numerous ways, the best way to use the herb is by making saffron milk or Kesar Doodh. It helps improve sleep quality, rejuvenate the body, enhance brain health and promote longevity.
To make saffron milk, boil a cup of milk and add 3-5 strands of saffron and a teaspoon of ghee. Let it continue to boil for another 5 minutes on low heat. Keep stirring periodically. Next, turn off the heat and pour the milk into a cup. Once the milk is slightly cooled down, add a teaspoon of honey and mix well.
You can also use saffron by making a cup of saffron tea or adding saffron threads to your food.
On a Final Note
Saffron is one of the most beneficial herbs in Ayurveda. It helps balance Tridoshas and provides many health benefits. Known to boost digestion, heart health, reproductive health, mental health and immunity, saffron is a must-add to your diet.