What’s the most recent on treating melancholy with the spice saffron? Years in the past, I lined a head-to-head comparability of saffron versus Prozac for the remedy of melancholy in my video Saffron vs. Prozac, and saffron appeared to work simply in addition to the drug. Within the years since, 5 different research have discovered that saffron beat out placebo or rivaled antidepressant medicines.

It might be the spice’s purple pigment, crocin, since that alone beat out placebo as an adjunct remedy, considerably lowering signs of melancholy, signs of hysteria, and common psychological misery. Maybe, its antioxidants performed a job in “stopping free radical-induced injury within the mind.” The quantity of crocin the researchers used was equal to a few half teaspoon of saffron a day.

If the spice works in addition to the medicine, one might argue that the spice wins, because it doesn’t trigger sexual dysfunction within the majority of women and men like most prescribed antidepressants do. SSRI medicine like Prozac, Paxil, and Zoloft trigger “antagonistic sexual unwanted effects” in round 70 p.c of individuals taking them. What’s extra, physicians not solely considerably underestimate the prevalence of unwanted effects, however additionally they are likely to underrate how a lot they affect the lives of their sufferers.

Not solely is that this not an issue with saffron, the spice might even be capable of deal with it, as I discover in my video Finest Meals for Antidepressant-Induced Sexual Dysfunction. “In people drugs, there is a extensively held perception that saffron may need aphrodisiac results.” To check this, males with Prozac-induced sexual impairment have been randomized to saffron or placebo for a month. By week 4, the saffron group “resulted in considerably better enchancment in erectile operate…and intercourse satisfaction,” and greater than half of the lads within the saffron group regained “regular erectile operate.” The researchers concluded that saffron is an “efficacious remedy” for Prozac-related erectile dysfunction. It has all been discovered to be efficient for feminine sexual dysfunction, as properly, as you’ll be able to see at 2:35 in my video. Feminine sexual operate elevated by week 4, bettering a number of the Prozac-induced sexual issues however not others. So, it could be higher to strive saffron within the first place for the melancholy and keep away from growing these sexual dysfunction issues, since they generally can persist even after stopping the medicine, probably worsening one’s long-term melancholy prognosis.

This contains uncommon unwanted effects, akin to genital anesthesia, the place you actually lose sensation. It will possibly occur in women and men. Extra not often, antidepressants can induce a situation referred to as stressed genital syndrome. You’ve heard of stressed legs syndrome? Effectively, this can be a stressed between-the-legs syndrome. These PSSDs, or Put up-SSRI Sexual Dysfunctions, that means dysfunctions that seem or persist after stopping taking these antidepressants, may be so severe that “prescribing physicians ought to point out the potential hazard of the prevalence of genital (e.g., penile or vaginal) anesthesia to each affected person previous to any SSRI remedy.” Should you’re on one in every of these medicine, did your physician warn you about that?

All hope shouldn’t be misplaced, although. Evidently, penile anesthesia responds to low-power laser irradiation. After 20 laser therapies to his penis, one man, who had misplaced his penile sensation because of the drug Paxil, partially regained his “penile contact and temperature sensation.” Nonetheless, he nonetheless couldn’t carry out to his girlfriend’s satisfaction, and she or he evidently ended up leaving him over it, which actually didn’t assist his temper. However, earlier than you’re feeling too badly for him, evaluate just a little penile gentle remedy to clitoridectomy, clitoris removing surgical procedure, or one other Paxil-related case the place a lady’s signs solely improved after six programs of electroshock remedy.

Cross the paella!

For extra on the spice, try:

These drug unwanted effects sound devastating, however melancholy is not any stroll within the park. Nonetheless, when one balances threat and profit, one assumes that there are truly advantages to taking them. That’s why the surprising science I explored in Do Antidepressant Medication Actually Work? is so vital.

What else might enhance temper? A nutritious diet and train:

For extra on sexual well being typically, see:

What else can spices do? Right here’s only a style:

In well being,

Michael Greger, M.D.

PS: Should you haven’t but, you’ll be able to subscribe to my free movies right here and watch my dwell displays:

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