KESHER (Saffron)

Botanical name :Crocus sativus
Family : Iridaceae


• Crocus sativus is a perennial herb that grows about 10 to 30 cm high. It develops as an underground corm, which produces leaves, bracts, bracteole, and the flowering generally blooms with purple flowers in the autumn.
• Flowers are sterile, have six petals and three red to orange colored stigmas. The plant grows about 10 to 30 cm high. Leaves are simple, rosulate in arrangement with entire margins.
• Saffron contains some 28 volatile and aroma-yielding compounds, dominated by ketones and aldehydes. Its main aroma-active compounds are safranal – the main compound responsible for saffron aroma – 4-ketoisophorone, and dihydrooxophorone.
Chemical composition :
• This spice has primary metabolites, which are ubiquitous in nature, such as carbohydrates, minerals, fats, vitamins, amino acids, and proteins. For reproduction of the organism, such as carotenoids, monoterpenes, and flavonoids, including mainly anthocyanins .
• Main biologically active constitutes of saffron are crocetin and its glycosidic form, crocin as dye materials, saffranal (spicy aroma), and picrocrocin giving bitter taste .

Properties :
• Rasa- Katu , Tikta
• Guna-Snigdha
• Virya- Ushna
• Vipaka- Katu
• Karma – Tridoshahara
Benefits :

  1. Skin
    • , Saffron has been used for skin conditions. It may help improve complexion, decrease dark circles under the eyes, refresh the face and may help manage acne and infections of the superficial layer of the skin (erysipelas)m
    • It may also help absorb the skin-damaging UV rays of the sun and can be used as a natural sunscreen. Saffron may help prevent skin cancer.It may help reduce the production of melanin pigment in the skin, helping in lightening the skin.
  2. Cholesterol
    • Saffron potentially reduces cholesterol levels in the blood, which reduces atherosclerosis (a condition in which cholesterol gets deposited on the arteries).
    • These properties of saffron may help with blood cholesterol levels, but more studies are required to support its use.
  3. Digestion
    • Saffron may act as a tonic for the digestive system. It may help curb the appetite and the formation of gases in the intestine. It also may help to manage amoebic dysentery.1
    • Using saffron in the diet may help ease digestion, but it is better to get help from the doctor if you are experiencing any digestive issues.
  4. Eyes
    • Saffron may be used to manage various eye problems such as cataracts, diseases of the cornea, soreness of the eyes and eye diseases occurring due to ageing. It was used by females in a form of ‘Kohl’ to line their eyes, as a form of makeup, protecting them from eye infections.
    • It may also help reduce the destruction of photoreceptor cells in the eye that occurs due to exposure to light
  5. Heart
    • The alcohol extracts of Saffron have demonstrated properties to lower blood pressure. It may potentially play a key role in reducing the risk factors for causing heart disease like lipids as seen above.
  6. Depression
    • Saffron could reduce the level of neurotransmitters in the brain, thereby improving mood. It has also studied for its ability to reduce depression and anxiety.
    • The extracts of Saffron could enhance memory and learning capabilities during lab studies. Clinical studies have shown that Saffron could improve memory in patients with Alzheimer’s disease who are suffering from dementia.