Posted on May 30, 2019, 7 p.m.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or a variation of such can make it difficult to focus. Rather then drugging the mind there is a growing trend in looking for alternatives rather than reaching for a pharmaceutical, for more gentler approach that doesn’t have as many risks for side effects.
Saffron/Crocus sativus L. is suggested to work just as effectively as, if not better than, many FDA approved methamphetamine pharmaceutical legal treatments in findings from Tehran University of Medical Science research, published in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology.
54 ADHD diagnosed children and teenagers between the ages of 6-17 were involved in this study who were instructed to either take methamphetamine or saffron for 6 weeks, at which time participants were evaluated to determine what treatment worked more effectively.
No significant differences were found in the outcomes between the participants who took saffron compared to those who took Ritalin, suggesting that saffron may be a safer and more natural alternative treatment for ADHD.
Harold S. Koplewicz, M.D. comments: “This is a very interesting study and an intriguing finding. It is worthy of replication and further study to understand the mechanism of action.”
Saffron has been shown to have powerful effects against anxiety which is a co-morbid condition that afflicts some 60% of those diagnosed with ADHD; as much as 30% of children with ADHD also have an anxiety disorder and as much as 50% of adults suffer from both conditions according to Dr. Timothy J. Legg, Ph.D, CRNP.
Saffron is referred to as fan hong hua in traditional Chinese medicine where it is used to treat depression, calm the nerves, and lift the spirit.
Saffron was revealed to work the same as or better than imipramine and fluoxetine in a double blind study without the harmful side effects when comparing saffron to Tofranil and Prozac. In another related study saffron petal extracts were shown to help reduce symptoms of mild depression with no harmful side effects in just one week.
“Though the mechanism(s) of action responsible for beneficial effects of saffron have not been clearly established they may involve dopamine and norepinephrine and possibly also GABA, the brain’s principal inhibitory neurotransmitter. More studies are needed to confirm these findings and determine optimal dosing strategies.” writes Dr. James Lake, M.D.
Saffron is rather pricey, which makes it a target for fakes. When purchasing saffron be sure to get it from a reputable source to ensure quality.
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This article is not intended to provide medical diagnosis, advice, treatment, or endorsement