Erectile dysfunction affects millions of men around the world, taking a significant toll on their self-esteem, relationships, and psychological well-being. It's typically treated with phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors (PDE5Is). However, an increasing number of men are searching for alternative solutions that are more effective and free of unpleasant side effects.
Saffron, known to be the most expensive spice on the Earth, contains powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds that may benefit men's sexual health.1 This 2022 trial was conducted to further assess the effects of saffron on erectile dysfunction.
Researchers recruited 62 men, diagnosed with mild erectile dysfunction. The average age of the participants was 41 years. They were randomized to receive either 15 mg of saffron or placebo capsules twice a day for six weeks.
The primary outcome was the change in the erectile function score. The results were published in the Journal of Herbal Medicine.
The results showed that saffron improved the erectile function score by 6.14 points, which was significantly higher than placebo.
The improvement was observed from the second week and continued until the end of the trial. Saffron was also safe and well-tolerated, with no serious adverse effects reported.
What Does this Mean?
The results of this trial suggest that saffron may be effective for erectile dysfunction. These discoveries might be particularly useful for those who are reluctant or unable to use PDE5Is.
While more studies are needed to validate the effects of saffron for ED, including its adequate dosage, this trial offers hope for a natural treatment.
These findings also contribute to the body of evidence supporting the use of saffron for medicinal purposes, including as a potential treatment for diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease, and Alzheimer's disease, among others.
- Journal of Herbal Medicine, Possible effects of Saffron (Crocus sativus) in the treatment of erectile dysfunction: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 2022
- Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine. (2019). Effects of saffron (Crocus sativus) on sexual dysfunction among men and women: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Retrieved November 23, 2023, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6727438/