Did you know saffron wasn’t actually included in the original Chyawanprash recipe? According to the Charaka Samhita and ancient Vedic texts, Chyawanprash was made for many years without the inclusion of saffron. Over time – and due to the extinction of certain botanicals – saffron was introduced to Chyawanprash formulations to fulfill medicinal needs.
That said, many would consider that making Chyawanprash with saffron has made the medicine more powerful. Saffron is one of the most revered spices in the world. Read on to learn about why Chyawanprash with saffron is so powerful.
What Is Saffron?
Saffron is one of the world’s most prized spices – and, paradoxically, one of the least-often consumed. One of the reasons for this is because of its price: saffron is recognized as being the world’s most expensive spice.
The high price is a reflection of the intense amount of labor and material required to produce even a small amount of saffron. The saffron spice is nothing more than a tiny, hair-thin filament of the saffron plant. It takes more than 72,000 saffron flowers to produce a single pound of the saffron stigma (spice).
The extremely valuable nature of saffron makes the saffron trade to questionable activity. Make sure that any time you’re purchasing saffron, or a product made with saffron, that you’re getting it from an ethical and reliable source.
Benefits of Chyawanprash With Saffron
There are a number of reasons that recipes for Chyawanprash began including the tridoshic herb. Saffron’s unique benefits and actions include:
Digestion & Metabolism
Saffron is useful for helping the body digest and absorb nutrients. By enhancing agni, and increasing the production of the dhatus, saffron can be useful for bringing about all-around good health.
Saffron has a cooling effect and is believed to be purifying to the blood and to the cardiovascular system. Saffron helps to prevent blood clots from building up and can help encourage vascular detoxification. This makes it especially useful for Pitta-related disorders, which often affect the blood.
Saffron helps to relax and dilate the body’s blood vessels. In turn, this brings blood closer to the surface of the skin which encourages the pores to open. This helps to clean and purify the skin and can reduce some of the physical symptoms of aging.
Mind and Brain Coolant
Saffron is also believed to help cool the mind. This can be useful for helping to prevent mental agitation or excessive passions (which can manifest as anger or irritability).
Fertility & Reproductive Health
Saffron is known to be a powerful reproductive tonic for both men and women. By helping to increase blood flow throughout the body, saffron can improve libido and maintain stamina. Saffron also helps to increase the production of oxytocin, the ‘love hormone.’ Furthermore, saffron helps to improve menstrual cycles and increase the production of breast milk.
These are just a few of the reasons saffron is included in many modern Chyawanprash recipes and why many choose Chyawanprash formulations with saffron.
Reviewed by Dr. Jayant Lokhande, MD (Botanical Drugs), MBA (Biotechnology)