Saffron Extract - Mood, Stress, Relaxation
Improves mood, relieves stress, and supports relaxation
Uses & Benefits
- Helps support mood balance in adults, adolescents, and youth age 12 years and up
- Helps reduce the symptoms of perceived stress, such as fatigue, weariness, and irritability
- Helps relieve restlessness and nervousness
- Supports feelings of relaxation
People of all ages can feel overwhelmed by stress and nervousness. When left unaddressed, perceived stress can negatively affect overall health and quality of life. Natural Factors Stress-Relax Saffron Extract features affron®, a 100% pure source of saffron that has been clinically studied for mood balance in adults, adolescents, and youth 12 years of age and over. Saffron has a calming effect on the body that helps relieve restlessness and nervousness. Daily use helps reduce symptoms of perceived stress, such as fatigue, weariness, and irritability.
Affron is a premium saffron ingredient that is standardized to 3.5% Lepticrosalides®, a complex of saffron’s key active compounds. Multiple clinical studies with adults and adolescents support its effectiveness for improving mood balance and related symptoms, such as tension, nervousness, sadness, and fatigue. Affron is made from a certified source of genuine Crocus sativus L. from Spain. It is extracted using a proprietary AFF® ON Cool-Tech process that preserves and concentrates saffron’s key bioactives without the use of chemicals.
Saffron Extract is delivered in convenient vegetarian capsules that contain a gentle 14 mg dose to be taken twice daily, alone or in combination with other Stress-Relax products. This is a great supplement for people age 12 years and up who perceive life as stressful and want to support feelings of relaxation naturally.
Each vegetarian capsule contains: Saffron extract (Affron®) (Crocus sativus L.) (stigma) 14 mg (3.5% Lepticrosalides® containing crocins and saffranal)
Non-medicinal ingredients: Vegetarian capsule (carbohydrate gum [cellulose], purified water), microcrystalline cellulose, vegetable grade magnesium stearate (lubricant), stearic acid, silica.
Adults: Mood, symptoms of stress, nervousness: 1 capsule 2 times daily or as directed by a health care practitioner. Consult a health care practitioner for use beyond 12 weeks. Adolescents over 12 years of age (mood): 1 capsule 2 times daily or as directed by a health care practitioner. Consult a health care practitioner for use beyond 8 weeks.
How it works
Saffron contains more than 100 bioactive compounds; saffranal, crocin, and picrocrocin are responsible for the majority of its therapeutic activities (Singletary, 2020). Affron saffron extract is standardized to a complex of these compounds, collectively known as Lepticrosalides, and is guaranteed to contain a minimum of 3.5% crocin and saffranal.
Saffron’s anti-inflammatory activity acts on the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis, which is a key player in the body’s stress response. This helps lower stress hormone levels in the body (Lopresti et al., 2017).
Saffron supports mood balance by modifying levels of specific chemicals in the brain. Crocin and saffranal inhibit the reuptake mechanism of the neurotransmitters dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in nerve synapses. This helps improve mood by increasing the concentration of these neurotransmitters within synapses and in the
brain (Siddiqui et al., 2018). Crocin has also been shown to amplify the effects of antidepressant drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (Siddiqui et al., 2018).
Saffron is a spice sourced from the dried flower stigmas of the Crocus sativus L. plant. It has been cultivated for centuries for use in medicine, as a culinary ingredient, and as a dye. Harvesting saffron is an extremely meticulous process that makes it labour intensive and costly. As a result, saffron is highly valued and recognized as the most
expensive spice in the world (Singletary, 2020).
Saffron has a history of therapeutic use in traditional Ayurvedic and Persian remedies, including those for mental health (Singletary, 2020).
It is now supported by modern science, with multiple clinical studies connecting its key active compounds with improvements in mood balance and symptoms of perceived stress (Singletary, 2020).
Mood disorders are among the leading health concerns faced by today’s youth (Lopresti et al., 2017). In addition, statistics show that 28.3% of Canadian adults age 35–49 perceive life on most days as quite a bit or extremely stressful (Statistics Canada, 2019). Multiple studies have concluded that standardized saffron extracts provide significant benefits for adults and youth suffering from perceived stress, nervousness, and mood imbalances (Singletary, 2020).
Saffron provides an effective natural remedy for relieving mood issues without the adverse effects commonly associated with mood balance interventions. A randomized, placebo-controlled study was conducted on youth age 12–16 years displaying symptoms of mild-to-moderate nervousness and sadness, as assessed using the Revised Child Anxiety and Depression Scale (RCADS). After eight weeks of supplementation with 14 mg of Affron saffron extract taken twice per day, participant RCADS scores decreased by 33% (versus only 17% in the placebo group). Affron was associated with significant improvements in symptoms of nervousness, social phobia, and sadness (Lopresti et al., 2017).
Affron’s effectiveness was assessed in healthy adults with self-reported mood disorders. In this three-arm, randomized, placebo-controlled study, participants took either 28 mg or 22 mg of Affron per day, or a placebo. Assessments conducted at baseline and after four weeks of supplementation revealed a significant improvement in negative mood and symptoms of perceived stress and nervousness for those taking the 28 mg dose. This included improvements in tension, sadness, anger, fatigue, confusion, vigour, and total mood disturbance (Kell et al., 2017). An eight week, randomized, placebo-controlled study used this same dose of Affron in addition to pharmaceutical antidepressant therapy. Depressive symptoms decreased by 41% in adults taking Affron and pharmaceutical therapy versus only 21% in those taking a placebo and pharmaceutical therapy (Lopresti et al., 2019).
A meta-analysis of 21 studies further validated saffron’s overarching benefits for mild-to-moderate mood disorders by showing that it significantly reduced participant scores on the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), and Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index (PSQI). The analysis also highlighted the relatively low incidence of side effects in participants taking saffron (Ghaderi et al., 2020).
NATURAL FACTORS STRESS RELAX