Effect of the spice saffron (Crocus sativus L.) extract on diabetes management

A study published in the Journal of Nutrition & Intermediary Metabolism has looked at the beneficial effects of saffron on type 2 diabetic patients.

  • Saffron has been known to improve diabetes control and indicate renal and liver protection. However, its effects on some liver and renal function in patients with diabetes have not yet been explored.
  • Thus, researchers from Iran conducted a study on the effects of a saffron extract on some liver and renal function parameters among diabetic individuals.
  • In conducting the double-blind clinical study, the researchers randomly recruited 54 individuals with type 2 diabetes.
  • Twenty-seven of the study participants were administered with 15 milligrams (mg) saffron extract twice a day for eight weeks, while the other 27 participants were administered with placebo capsules.
  • The study authors measured the participants’ alkaline phosphatase, aspartate and alanine aminotransferase, uric acid, blood urea nitrogen, and creatinine.
  • In addition, the study authors measured the patients’ physical activity, dietary intakes, anthropometric measures, and blood pressures.
  • Results revealed that the saffron group exhibited significant reductions in uric acid and blood urea nitrogen.
  • However, no significant changes were observed between the saffron and placebo group at the end of the study.
  • In addition, changes in other profiles, such as liver enzymes, were not statistically significant in both groups.
  • Moreover, there were no significant improvements observed in the blood pressure, dietary intakes, and physical activity of the two groups.

The study authors concluded that saffron hydro-alcoholic extract may improve renal protection in saffron treated type 2 diabetic patients by itself, although the protective effect was not significant when compared with placebo.

For the full text of the study, go to this link.

Journal Reference:

Milajerdi A, Jazayeri S, Bitarafan V, Hashemzadeh N, Shirzadi E, Derakhshan Z, Mahmoodi M, Rayati A, Djazayeri A, Akhondzadeh S. THE EFFECT OF SAFFRON (CROCUS SATIVUS L.) HYDRO-ALCOHOLIC EXTRACT ON LIVER AND RENAL FUNCTIONS IN TYPE 2 DIABETIC PATIENTS: A DOUBLE-BLINDED RANDOMIZED AND PLACEBO CONTROL TRIAL. Journal of Nutrition & Intermediary Metabolism. September 2017;9:6–11. DOI: 10.1016/j.jnim.2017.07.002

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