Saffron is a spice as well as a natural dye that is grown under special weather conditions. this spice comes from the saffron crocus flower. The three stigmas on each flower are called saffrons.
the most expensive spice which grows in Iran and Kashmir is predicted to be the most expensive spice in the world. A good quality saffron can cost around US $ 5,000 for 450 grams, or the equivalent of Rp. 70 million.
History records that this spice has been around for the last 3,000 years and was first grown in Iran. This plant only grows for one week a year.
Today, 90 percent of the world’s saffron is produced in Iran. While a tenth of it is produced in Kashmir. this spice itself is one of the spices often used in everyday Persian cooking.
There are no other spices that can replace the pleasures of this spice. Saffron is not just an ordinary spice, it has a lot of benefits. This has been proven in several studies.
In Business Insider says this spice contains several very expensive chemical components such as picrocrocin, crocin, and safranal. They are the three main components or compounds that give rise to a distinctive taste, color and aroma.
When it comes to the quality of the most expensive spice, technically these three chemical components determine the quality of this spice.
Saffron is commonly found in foods, as saffron paella is used to add a strong aroma and as a natural colorant.
This spice is also used in broths, bread, and seasonings. this spice is a natural dye and can create a golden yellow color. Besides being processed into food and coloring, saffron can be consumed by taking it in capsules.
Not only in Iran, this spice is also grown in other countries such as Spain, India and America.
Benefits of Saffron
Saffron provides many benefits, especially for body health, among the many benefits of this spice, the following are:
1. Against free radicals trigger chronic disease
The results showed that this spice has a high antioxidant content. Several types of antioxidants in saffron include crocin, picrocrocin, safranal, kaempferol compounds, and crocetin.
Antioxidants can help fight oxidative stress and free radicals in the body. As is well known, oxidative stress and free radicals are the sources of health problems, such as cancer and heart disease.
2. Prevent nervous system disorders
The antioxidants in saffron can play a role in protecting the body from disorders of the nervous system. Research conducted in 2015 proved that the crocin compounds in this spice can reduce inflammation and oxidative damage in the brain.
Another study published in the journal Antioxidants notes that saffron can relieve symptoms of Alzheimer’s because it can increase memory and reduce inflammation in the brain.
From the results of the study, mild to moderate Alzheimer’s sufferers who used this spice for 22 weeks had cognitive improvements like those who took the drug donepezil.
However, these studies are only in their early stages and require clinical trials to support the use of saffron as an alternative drug for nervous system disorders.
3. Improve mood
Apart from physical health, saffron is also said to have potential mental health benefits. This spice can help improve mood which is useful for supporting the treatment of depression sufferers.
Research conducted by the Journal of Behavioral and Brain Science says the Most Expensive Spice extract can increase dopamine levels in the brain without changing levels of other brain hormones, such as serotonin.
The results of other studies show that taking 30 milligrams of this spice every day has the same effect as taking mild to moderate depression medications, such as imipramine and fluoxetine.
However, using this spice as a complementary therapy to improve mood for depressed individuals should consult a doctor.
4. Increase libido
This spice is also said to increase sex drive and sexual function in men and women. According to experts, saffron has a positive effect on erectile dysfunction and overall sex drive problems.
Another study also proved that this spice is beneficial for women who experience sexual dysfunction because of the side effects of antidepressant drugs.
5. Reducing discomfort before menstruation
For women, this spice is beneficial for reducing premenstrual syndrome symptoms. According to expert reviews, women between the ages of 20 and 45 who took 30 milligrams of saffron daily had fewer symptoms of premenstrual syndrome.
In addition, women who only smelled this spice for 20 minutes had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol. It can also reduce discomfort before menstruation.
6. Helps lose weight
Numerous studies have shown that this spice can help you lose weight and prevent excessive appetite.
The results of the Journal of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Research study revealed that drinking extract can help control weight in coronary heart sufferers. After drinking extract, the body mass index, total fat mass, and waist circumference of people with coronary heart disease were shown to be reduced.
People who take these spice supplements also have moderate appetites. How to reap the benefits of saffron is quite practical.
You can add this spice to everyday savory dishes like pasta or dishes with rice side dishes. Meanwhile, the way to drink saffrons is also quite easy.
You just have to brew this spice in hot water. Avoid soaking in boiling water.