Saffron Extract, or Crocus Sativus has been used for many years as a spice mostly used to flavour foods and occasionally used as a holistic medicine as well to fight help fight depression. Another interesting fact about Saffron Extract is that it is considered to be the world's most expensive spice due to the high labour costs associated with producing the product.
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Saffron extract is naturally derived from a plant/flower, which goes by the name of ‘crocus sativus’. Saffron has been used for thousands of years and is a key ingredient in many Eastern dishes. Saffron, pound for pound, is widely considered to be more valuable than gold. However, when it comes to saffron extract, this wonder substance can do so much more than simply add delicious flavour to your dishes. Numerous studies conducted over the years have actually revealed that saffron extract could be one of the most effective supplements for assisting with weight loss. In order to obtain enough extract to be beneficial however, you would need to pick nearly 100,000 flowers, to create just one pound of saffron extract. Luckily however, you don’t have to worry about that, because the supplement companies have taken care of that for you.
When it comes to weight loss, saffron extract really comes into its own, for a variety of different reasons. To begin with, saffron extract is able to assist with weight loss, because it has been scientifically proven to prevent over-eating. It contains natural compounds that work on your brain and help block hunger pains and cravings for unhealthy junk food. This is also useful as it can prevent emotional eating, sometimes known as comfort eating. When we’re upset or feeling down, we often find ourselves turning to unhealthy food to help make us feel better. Saffron extract however, can again help prevent these cravings from occurring. When you consume saffron extract, the saffron can enter the brain, as well as the stomach and digestive tract, and can actually help mimic the effects that we would feel if we were to eat some unhealthy food.
Some of the primary benefits associated with natural saffron extract supplements include:
Obviously one of the biggest benefits associated with this supplement, is the fact that it has been proven to assist with weight loss. Rather than helping the body to burn off body fat, like with other fat-burning supplements, saffron extract works on a molecular level by telling the brain that we are feeling full, and helping to block cravings for junk food. If we’re feeling full, we are less likely to overeat, plus, we will be less likely to cheat on our diets by eating junk.
Another great benefit of saffron extract is the fact that, as it can help to prevent emotional eating, it can actually help improve mental health as it can help us to feel happier and more content. Studies have found that saffron could help to relieve the symptoms of anxiety and depression, which is a huge benefit in itself.
Studies have also found that saffron extract can help to relieve asthma and other breathing conditions, although as of yet, the reasons why are not yet known.
Other benefits include:
As saffron extract can be used for different conditions, the dosages you consume will depend on why you are using the supplement in the first place. For weight loss however, experts recommend around 100mg to be taken twice daily, so 200mg per day in total. For best results, consume before your two largest meals of the day, generally around 15 – 30 minutes before.
Green tea extract is another popular weight loss supplement on the market, that also happens to provide various other health benefits in the process. However, comparing saffron extract with green tea extract would be like comparing chalk and cheese, because although they both assist with weight loss, they do so in very different ways. Saffron extract assists with weight loss as it suppresses the appetite and reduces hunger and cravings for junk food, resulting in less calories being consumed. Green tea extract however, is thermogenic, which means that it speeds up the metabolism and therefore causes more fat to be burnt off and converted into energy.
In actual fact, many people will stack Green Tea Extract with natural saffron extract, as they are then getting the best of both worlds, as they are burning fat, whilst consuming less calories in the process. Other people prefer a more subtle and natural route however, so may stick with multi-vitamins, fish oil supplements, and perhaps a Vitamin C supplement to help boost the immune system.
As with all supplements, if you are using any new products, always consult your doctor and discontinue usage if you experience any adverse side effects. Pregnant and breast feeding women should not consume this supplement. Although natural and very healthy, whilst side effects are rare, some users have experienced the following, and if you experience the same, you may wish to discontinue usage, or at the very least, speak to your doctor:
Finally, whereas several hundred milligram dosages are perfectly safe and hugely beneficial, extremely large dosages of around 12 grams – 20 grams, could result in loss of life.