A tablespoon of saffron is expensive not just because of its flavor and aroma, but also because of its nutritional value. For each tablespoon, you’ll get Vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B9 B12, C, and D. In this article, we’ll go over the nutritional benefits you’ll get from saffron.
You probably already know that Vitamin A keeps your eyes healthy and sharp. But did you know it offers other health benefits as well?
For starters, Vitamin A can boost your immune system by increasing your white blood cells, as well as the mucous barriers in your gut, lungs, and genitals to trap any harmful bacteria. In short, it will lead to less infections and diseases in the future.
By adding saffron to your meals, you can help cover only a little of your daily Vitamin A needs. Nevertheless, this will help you gradually unlock all its benefits.
Thiamine (Vitamin B1)
As with Vitamin A above, a tablespoon of saffron only contains a little Vitamin B1 or Thiamine. But since your body only stores a small amount of Thiamine, you’ll still be doing yourself a favor by getting it from saffron.
By keeping your body well stocked with Thiamine, you’ll be opening yourself up to its benefits. One of these is improved nervous system support, as Vitamin B1 is essential in maintaining the myelin sheaths that protect your nerve cells.
Another benefit of Thiamine is enhanced antioxidant support. As an antioxidant itself, Vitamin B1 can help manage your body’s aging, allowing you to look young beyond your years.
Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)
Saffron contains around 0.01 mg of Riboflavin or Vitamin B2 per tablespoon. Again, this will only cover a little of your daily needs. But considering the benefits of Riboflavin, not to mention the price of saffron, it’s already quite a lot.
Essential for one’s physical growth and overall health, Riboflavin helps break down the carbohydrates, proteins, and fats you ingested. This helps keep you energized, as well as give your body the building blocks it needs to develop.
What’s more, Riboflavin can improve your heart health by improving your blood circulation and helping your system produce fresh red and white blood cells. This allows more oxygen to flow through your body, optimizing all your bodily functions in the process.
Niacin (Vitamin B3)
Within the same tablespoon of saffron lies up to 0.03 mg of Niacin or Vitamin B3. by supplementing your meals with a few threads, you’ll make your dishes tastier and healthier.
In terms of benefits, Niacin has quite a few to offer. However, its main role is to produce nicotinamide adenine dinucleotides (NADs) and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphates (NADPs) in your body. These two enzymes aid your body in processing certain components in your food and turning them into energy.
A tablespoon of saffron also contains up to 0.02 milligrams of Vitamin B6. Sometimes known as pyridoxine, this water-soluble B vitamin can bring several health benefits for your body.
For example, Vitamin B6 can potentially help improve your mood, as well as reduce any symptoms of depression you might be experiencing. This is partly thanks to the vitamins helping your brain create neurotransmitters to regulate your emotions.
Furthermore, Vitamin B6 can help your circulatory system produce more hemoglobin. This will help reduce your chances of facing anemia, as well as keep you energetic as you go about your day-to-day activities.
Folate (Vitamin B9)
Containing just 2 micrograms of Folate per teaspoon, it’s easy to dismiss saffron as a regular source of the B vitamin. However, saffron’s tiny contribution is enough for you to enjoy every single benefit the vitamin has to offer.
One of its most notable benefits is birth defect prevention. By taking folate supplements around a month before getting pregnant, you could reduce your baby’s chances of encountering anencephaly, spina bifida, and other issues.
Similar to Vitamin B6, Folate can improve your mental health by reducing your depression. But at the same time, it can help reduce your chances of having dementia in your later years, allowing you to live your life to the fullest.
A tablespoon of saffron has a nearly negligible amount of Vitamin B12, which may put you off from relying on it as a daily source. But since your body cannot produce this vitamin on its own, you should still keep it in your cupboards just in case you lack other sources.
Also known as cobalamin, Vitamin B12 plays many roles to promote your health. For one thing, it keeps your nerve cells working properly, as well as prevents your brain from needlessly losing your neurons.
You also need Vitamin B12 to ensure red blood cell formation and DNA synthesis. And like Folate above, it can help you prevent certain major birth defects, all while reducing your chances of experiencing premature birth or miscarriage.
Also known as ascorbic acid, Vitamin C is an all-important, all-powerful vitamin that’s crucial for your health and well being. By sprinkling your food with a tablespoon of saffron, you’ll give yourself up to 1.7 mg of this nutrient.
The numerous benefits Vitamin C has to offer has been discussed elsewhere. But if you want a good example, it’s this: Vitamin C can slow down your skin’s natural aging process. If you find your skin losing its luster and vigor, then add saffron to your diet. In time, you’ll see yourself looking and feeling younger again.
Finally, saffron is an alternative source of Vitamin D. While you can mostly get this vitamin by enjoying a ray of sunshine, getting it from the spice, too, won’t hurt.
As with Vitamin C, the health benefits offered by Vitamin D are already largely well-known. But if you want a good example again, here it is: Vitamin D helps boost your immune system and supports your weight loss. If you want to live healthy and fit, then you need to make sure you get your daily dose of this sunshine vitamin.
At $5 per gram, saffron is easily the most expensive spice in the world. But with so many great vitamins to give you, this price is well justified. So if you want to enjoy such nutrients, best make sure your cupboard has a can of saffron ready for use.