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Arabic Name : Za’fran
Bengali Name : Jafran
Chinese Name : Fan hung hua
English Name : Saffron
French Name : Safran
German Name : Krokus, Gewürzsafran, Safran
Gujarati Name : Keshar
Hindi Name : Kesar, Keshar
Kannada Name : Kumkuma, Kesari
Kashmiri Name : Kaungh, Kong
Latin name : Crocus sativus Linn.
Marathi Name : Keshar
Persian Name : Zafran, Karkamees
Punjabi Name : Zafran
Sanskrit Name : Keshara, Kumkuma
Urdu Name : Zafran
It is a small perennial herb constituted by the stigma and style of the flower. It takes about 1,00,000 flowers to yield 1 kg saffron or 4000 to make an ounce. It contains natural Riboflavin and Thiamine (B Vitamins). Saffron is used as an emmenagogue and a nervine sedative and in fevers, melancholia and enlargement of the liver. It also has acrid, alterative, anodyne, antidepressant, antiinflammatory, antioxidant, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, appetiser, bitter, carminative, diaphoretic, diuretic, expectorant, galactagogue, narcotic, rejuvenative, stimulant and stomachic properties.
It has an essential oil, the active ingredient of which is aphrodisiac in nature. Its aphrodisiac virtue is due to the slight stimulation of the central nervous system. It is also used in spasmodic cough and asthma and in catarrhal affections of children. It is also given in anaemia, chlorosis and seminal debility. It also improves circulation and strengthens the heart, brain and liver. Saffron induces menstruation, treats period pain and chronic uterine bleeding. Saffron contains a chemical called “crocetin”, which has been determined to increase the oxygen content of the blood, which may in turn reduce plaque build up in arteries.
Additional human studies have indicated that saffron has powerful antioxidant properties; that is, it helps to protect living tissues from free radicals and other harmful effects of oxidation.
Two chemical components of saffron extract, crocetin and crocin, reportedly improved memory and learning skills in learning-impaired rats in a Japanese study published in early 2000. These properties indicate that saffron extract may be a useful treatment for neurodegenerative disorders and related memory impairment. Saffron is prescribed for nervousness as it is believed to be a sedative.
Recommended Dosage: 250 mg to 500 mg.
Contraindication: Large amounts (more than 5 gm.) have uterine stimulant and abortifacient effects. Lethal dose is approximately 12 to 20 g. Avoid use during pregnancy and lactation.