The prosexual effect of saffron
Saffron supplementation has a prosexual effect, especially regarding sexual arousal. This is the conclusion of a meta-study published in 2019 in the Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine.
Researchers from Torbat Heydariyeh University of Medical Sciences in Iran traced 5 previously published trials in the medical literature in which a total of 137 subjects with sexual complaints participated. The researchers combined the results and reanalyzed them. In the trials, subjects in the active group received supplements with saffron or its extracts.
The tested doses of the extracts ranged from 15-30 milligrams per day. Supplements with that dose are available in practically every online store that sells supplements.
More details about the studies used can be found in the table below. Click on it for a larger version.
In the trials used for the meta-study, researchers measured the prosexual effect of saffron using a questionnaire that identified several aspects. All aspects added together, the effect of saffron was positive, as shown in the figure below.
Click on the figures below for a larger version. B = experimental group.
Above you see the effect of saffron broken down into different sexual dimensions. The effect of supplementation seems to be most noticeable in terms of arousal.
Saffron contains saffranal and picrocrocin, among other things. These substances probably increase the concentration of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine in the brain, which may increase the activity of sexual centers in the brain.
"In general, saffron was effective in improving sexual dysfunction and its dimensions among participants, although the significance of this effect varied in terms of different aspects of sexual dysfunction," the researchers summarize.
"Further studies are recommended to evaluate saffron effects on sexual dysfunction."
Avicenna J Phytomed. 2019 Sep-Oct;9(5):419-27.
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