(NaturalHealth365) The benefits of saffron can be traced back several centuries cross-culturally around the globe. As a staple in the Mediterranean diet, we have long observed the beneficial health effects – on a clinical basis – including its ability to prevent cancer.
In fact, back in the days of Galen and Hippocrates, this beautiful plant was used to counter the effects of colds, coughs, insomnia and even heart ailments. And, today, we now have strong scientific data to suggest that saffron can be effective at preventing even the most aggressive and deadly forms of cancers by protecting the integrity of our DNA.
Prevent cancer: Saffron trumps one-dimensional dangerous cancer drugs while protecting DNA
What makes saffron so unique as opposed to dangerous, synthetic chemicals are the multi-stage, therapeutic effects it exerts against cancer.
Carotenoids present in saffron – crocetin, chrocin and safranal confer – directly protect us against genetic damage, specifically DNA damage due to chemotherapy. Additionally, saffron has been observed to prevent new cancer growth by slowing and preventing DNA damage that is typically related to radiation therapy and the inflammation that results from free radical exposure.
Understanding the ‘multi-stage’ cancer fighting properties of saffron
A multi-dimensional cancer fighting therapeutic, saffron confronts cancer at all stages of the disease process from prevention to reversal.
Carcinogenesis, the process by which cancer cells develop and become malignant has been shown to be reduced by saffron. Studies support how saffron inhibits many of the epigenetic triggers that initiate the carcinogenic process such as environmental toxins and viral influences.
Saffron slows and prevents the most deadly forms of cancer
Liver, lung and stomach cancer are known as the deadliest forms of cancer. Tumors and tissue damage in these organs as a result of cancer have been shown to decrease and cease when saffron treatment is introduced.
Saffron was also found to elicit direct and mutually enhancing effects when combined with other cancer therapeutics. In the case of stomach cancer, blood levels of protective compounds that suppress cancer were increased when combined with stomach cancer medication. For lung cancer, saffron induced cancer cell apoptosis. (programmed cell death)
How to stop cancer from rapidly spreading in its tracks
Rapidly growing cancer cells impose a double threat to the immune system – their altered state significantly taxes the immune system, lowering its ability to fend off opportunistic pathogenic influences while creating widespread inflammation.
With saffron, prevention of rapid cancer cell growth has been observed in cases of pancreatic, lung, colon and breast cancer growth. In the case of pancreatic cancer, one of saffron’s many carotenoids, crocetin, when given orally after cancer tumors had been observed, was able to slow and reverse cancer.
Saffron is safe compared to most conventional cancer drugs
Despite the millions of dollars poured into cancer research and treatment each year – here in the United States, modern conventional treatments continue to impose serious and life-threatening side effects to patients. Researchers point out that unlike current pharmacological therapeutics, saffron did not damage or endanger any healthy cellular activity, and was only active against cancer cells in studies.
To date, there have not been any documented cases of tissue damage or blood coagulation – two harmful effects related to common cancer treatments.
Because so many therapeutics are still only focused on treatment once cancer has developed, saffron’s cancer preventive properties continue to attract research funding. Current and future saffron research will look at how the therapeutic works at an advanced genetic level – specifically genetic expression so that its preventive properties can be fully understood.
About the author: Christine M. Dionese L.Ac, MSTOM is an integrative health expert, medical journalist and food writer. She’s dedicated her career to helping others understand the science of happiness and its powerful effects on everyday human health. Christine practices, writes and speaks on environmental functional medicine, personalized medicine and epigenetics, food science and sustainable living.