Why You Care - anxiety and stress reducer, cognitive enhancer*

With stress and anxiety on the rise, we dug into available research to see if we could find something natural to help out. Sure enough, we found a boat load of research on Saffron.

Saffron is a powerful natural anxiety and stress reducer, and it has also been used to treat cognitive decline. It's an overall great herb for our brains.*

Suggested Use

Suggested Use: Take 1 capsule up to twice a day, or as directed by your healthcare professional.


Research Notes

"In conclusion, saffron extract appears to reduce depressive mood in healthy individuals experiencing subclinical mood disturbance and adds to the growing literature showing consistent benefits of saffron on depression outcomes across both clinical and non-clinical populations. Importantly, the beneficial effect of saffron on heart rate variability in response to a psychosocial stressor—shown for the very first time in the present study—suggests that this natural extract may be particularly relevant for increasing resilience against the development of stress-related psychiatric disorders."

- Jackson PA, Forster J, Khan J, Pouchieu C, Dubreuil S, Gaudout D, Moras B, Pourtau L, Joffre F, Vaysse C, Bertrand K, Abrous H, Vauzour D, Brossaud J, Corcuff JB, Capuron L, Kennedy DO. Effects of Saffron Extract Supplementation on Mood, Well-Being, and Response to a Psychosocial Stressor in Healthy Adults: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Parallel Group, Clinical Trial. Front Nutr. 2021 Feb 1;7:606124. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2020.606124. PMID: 33598475; PMCID: PMC7882499.*

Purpose: To investigate the efficacy and safety of saffron in the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD) in comparison to placebo and synthetic antidepressants.

Patients and methods: We conducted a systematic search in several electronic databases as well as manual search in bibliographies of relevant studies. We included randomized controlled trials that investigated the efficacy and safety of saffron for treating MDD in adults in comparison to either placebo or synthetic antidepressants. Primary outcome was change in scores on depressive symptoms from baseline. Secondary outcomes included remission rate, response rate, and drop-out rate for all reasons. We chose a random-effects model in order to obtain more conservative results. Standardized mean differences (SMDs) and odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated as the overall effect index by inverse variance models.

Results: Seven studies were included in this meta-analysis. Overall quality of these included studies was moderate. As for the primary outcome, saffron showed more improvements in depression symptoms when compared with placebo, with an SMD of -1.22 (95% CI -1.94, -0.49, P=0.001). Meanwhile, saffron was as effective as synthetic antidepressants, with an SMD of 0.16 (95% CI -0.25, 0.57, P=0.44). Moderate heterogeneity existed in our analysis. Through subgroup analyses, we found that treatment dosage and duration, types of synthetic antidepressants administered in the comparison group, and outcome measures could explain most of the variance. No differences were found in remission rate, response rate, or drop-out rate.

Conclusion: Saffron was effective in the treatment of MDD and had comparable efficacy to synthetic antidepressants. Saffron was also a safe drug without serious adverse events reported.

Keywords: depression; efficacy; meta-analysis; safety; saffron."

- Yang X, Chen X, Fu Y, Luo Q, Du L, Qiu H, Qiu T, Zhang L, Meng H. Comparative efficacy and safety of Crocus sativus L. for treating mild to moderate major depressive disorder in adults: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2018 May 21;14:1297-1305. doi: 10.2147/NDT.S157550. PMID: 29849461; PMCID: PMC5967372.*

Our Friendly FDA Warnings

Improper Use Can Be Bad For Your Health

Using supplements improperly can be harmful. Taking a combination of supplements, using these products together with medicine, or substituting them in place of prescribed medicines could lead to harmful, even life-threatening, results.

Pre and Post Surgery Caution

Some supplements can have unwanted effects before, during, or after surgery. For example, bleeding is a potential side effect risk of garlic, ginkgo biloba, ginseng, and Vitamin E. In addition, kava and valerian act as sedatives and can increase the effects of anesthetics and other medications used during surgery. Before surgery, you should inform your health care professional about all the supplements you use.

Not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or alleviate . . .

Dietary supplements are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or alleviate the effects of diseases. They cannot completely prevent diseases, as some vaccines can. However, some supplements are useful in reducing the risk of certain diseases and are authorized to make label claims about these uses. For example, folic acid supplements may make a claim about reducing the risk of birth defects of the brain and spinal cord.