Saffron Defies Stress Eating

By mood elevation

Woman snacking

Woman snacking

One way that saffron works to confer satiety is through mood elevation, say the researchers. Clinical studies evaluating saffron in mild-to-moderate depression report that the cooking spice equivalent to therapeutic doses of the anti-depressants imipramine and fluoxetine.

An extract from saffron (Crocus sativus), the most expensive spice in the world, may be the answer to stemming binge eating and snacking behaviors, a renown killers when it comes to weight loss, say researchers in Nutrition Research.

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Sixty healthy, mildly overweight women participated in this randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind study that evaluated the efficacy of a saffron extract (Satiereal) on body weight changes over an 8-week period.

Participants kept a nutrition diary and consumed one capsule of saffron extract (176.5 milligrams) or placebo per day. Caloric intake was left unrestricted during the study.

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Saffron “caused a significantly greater body weight reduction than placebo after 8 weeks,” the researchers said. “The mean snacking frequency was significantly decreased…. Our results indicate that Satiereal consumption produces a reduction of snacking and creates a satiating effect that could contribute to body weight loss. The combination of an adequate diet with Satiereal supplementation might help subjects engaged in a weight loss program in achieving their objective.”

References

i Sarris J. Herbal medicines in the treatment of psychiatric disorders: A systematic review. Phytother Res. 2007;21:703–6. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]

ii Thachil AF, Mohan R, Bhugra D. The evidence base of complementary and alternative therapies in depression. J Affect Disord. 2007;97:23–35. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]

iii Gout B, Bourges C, Paineau-Dubreuil S.Satiereal, a Crocus sativus L extract, reduces snacking and increases satiety in a randomized placebo-controlled study of mildly overweight, healthy women.Nutr Res. 2010 May;30(5):305-13. doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2010.04.008.

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