Traditional and Modern Uses of Saffron
Saffron is the most expensive spice in the world, and that’s because it has always been a useful, rare, and hard-to-cultivate crop. Crocus sativus was used for a variety of purposes, and it still is so useful in some of them. Saffron Express team is honored to invite you to read this amazing brief history of this magical plant.
History and Origin
Saffron is one of the oldest spices, its history goes back to the highest archaism. Ancient authors, such as Homer, Solomon, Pliny, and Virgil, mentioned this flower in their narrative, which was then considered as divine. The earliest picture dates from 1600 to 1700 BC. Concerning the origin and domestication of Crocus sativus: Vavilov indicates that its origin is in the Middle East, while other authors suggest Central Asia or the islands of south-west Greece. From this primary zone, it would have spread to India, China, and Middle East countries. Such as Iran.
The economic impact of Saffron is important because of its high price, as it presents a strong added value. In addition to its economic importance. This crop mobilizes a large workforce—especially female—during the period of harvesting and pruning Saffron. The production of one kilogram of Saffron requires 150,000 to 200,000 flowers and about 400 hours of work! This article will describe the current understanding of the therapeutic properties of Saffron, their relationship with the various phytochemicals commonly found in this gold spice, and the other different uses of this spice that give it particular renown, especially in the cosmetics field.
Read also: Goddess, Blue Monkey, Saffron
Cosmetology and Perfumery Uses
More recently, Crocus sativus has attracted a renewed interest in its use in cosmetics. Cleopatra used it in her beauty products. In traditional Iranian medicine, Saffron can improve the complexion and can be used to treat erysipelas. In traditional Greek medicine, it can refresh the skin of the face and is used to relieve the liver of the domination of bile and to treat acne, skin diseases, and wounds. In addition, the body may look younger and brighter. In another category, Hindu women used Crocus sativus to make the bindi, the red or yellow dot on the forehead. It is, in a way, a third eye symbolizing good fortune and conscience. Nowadays, Saffron tepals have been studied in several studies as being rich in Crocin and kaempferol, thus representing an important source of bioactive compounds for potential cosmetic formulations.
Read also: The use of saffron in Hinduism
Pharmacological Benefits of Saffron
Since ancient times, plants have been used in every civilization, worldwide, as a source of traditional medicine. For more than 3000 years, Crocus sativus has been considered a panacea, according to Ayurvedic, Mongolian, Chinese, Egyptian, Greek and Arabic medicines.
Read also: What is Saffron’s place in medicine?
Saffron was traditionally used as an antidepressant from long ago. Depression is one of the five most prevalent diseases worldwide. Also, Crocus sativus has always enjoyed a reputation as an aphrodisiac in different Egyptian, Greek, Roman, and other civilizations. Traditionally, Muslims, Phoenicians, and the Chinese use Saffron as a sexual stimulant. Other than these two major traditional uses, Crocus sativus is nowadays known as an antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, antispasmodic, digestive tonic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, lowers cholesterol level, dyslipidemia limiter, etc.
If you enjoyed reading this article, you can find the full text under the name of “Traditional and Modern Uses of Saffron (Crocus Sativus)”, by Ibtissam Mzabri, Mohamed Addi, and Sbdelbasset Berrichi, Laboratory of Biology of Plants and Microorganisms, Faculty of Sciences, B.P. 717.