Saffron May Be As Effective As Alzheimer’s Drug
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia. It gets progressively worse over time and affects memory, thinking and behavior. A recent study suggests that taking saffron supplements may be as effective in slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s as Memantine, a prescription drug used to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
Participants in the study included 68 Alzheimer’s patients who took either 30 mg of saffron or 20 mg of Memantine for a full year. They were evaluated every month using the Severe Cognitive Impairment Rating Scale and the Functional Assessment Staging Test in order to measure cognitive decline.
At the conclusion of the study, the researchers found no significant difference in cognitive decline between the prescription drug and the saffron supplement groups. This suggests that saffron may be as effective as the prescription drug in slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
The researchers believe that these results could be due to saffron blocking amyloid ? in the brain. Amyloid ? is an amino acid whose build up in the brain is associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
Researchers from the Tehran University of Medical Sciences in Iran conducted the study. It was published in the July 2014 issue of Human Psychopharmacology.
Saffron is a common ingredient in East Indian and Middle Eastern cooking.
Previous studies suggest that saffron may help relieve asthma, whooping cough, and regular cough by loosening phlegm. It has also been used to aid people with sleep problems, gas, and depression.