Updated: Oct 24, 2020
Saffron (crocus sativus) is a spice that has been used since ancient times. Back in the older ages, saffron was only available to royalty and aristocrats, as it was rare, and hence, very expensive. Today, even though it’s still fairly pricey, it’s more widely accessible to the masses.
Many aspects of Indian culture and spirituality have practical, as well as sublime, purpose. In Hindu spiritual rituals, a red dot is often symbolically placed on a person’s forehead, in between their eyes (often referred to as the ‘third eye’), as a blessing to awaken one’s inner wisdom.
Did you know that the practical reason for this placement of saffron is to act on the blood tissue of the body (called rakta dhatu) in a way that prevents and treat headaches? Saffron is additionally utilized to help with reducing vomiting.
Saffron also benefits the skin, improving the complexion, and serving as a key ingredient in many all-natural Ayurvedic beauty regimens. Saffron is, in fact, one of the naturally oily foods that pregnant women are recommended to eat to ensure babies have good quality, healthy skin from the start. This spice is considered to have special blood purifying properties that cause it to beauty your skin from the inside out.
This herb has a beautiful aroma. People have likened its scent to many things: fresh earth, new-mown hay and wild honey.
Ways to use it:
Saffron milk: boil milk with sugar, and add a few strands of saffron to it for a delicious and beautifying recipe to enjoy in the morning or at night (at least three hours after dinner).
Saffron paste: rub saffron strands with milk and apply the resultant paste to reduce dark circles around your eyes.
Saffron rice: cook rice with a few strands of saffron in it for a delicious accompaniment to your favorite savory dishes.
You can order saffron strands to start to connect with your inner royalty.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR ANANTA RIPA AJMERA is founder and CEO of The Ancient Way and Director of Ayurveda at THE WELL, a modern wellness club that brings together world-class doctors and master healers for a more balanced you. She is author of The Ayurveda Way, a compilation of 108 simple, doable practices for better sleep, less stress, optimal digestion and more.