herbal tea of saffron and chamomile improves symptoms of depression

Any discovery that is safe and effective for depression would be a welcome discovery. A cup of tea made of these two safe, gentle herbs may be just such a discovery.

Depression is debilitating. It would be remarkable if a cup of herbal tea could help.

Though not yet much discussed, saffron is one of the most remarkable herbs for depression. Chamomile is a gentle, relaxing herb. The combination has recently been shown to significantly help depression.

The double-blind study included 120 people with mild to moderate depression. Half of them acted as the control by simply continuing their medications. The other half continued their medications but added a cup of tea made by infusing a tea bag containing 20mg of dried chamomile flowers and 1mg of saffron stamens. They drank two cups a day for a month.

Both the drug only group and the drug plus herbs group had a significant reduction in depression severity at the end of the month. However, the ones taking the saffron and chamomile had a highly significantly greater reduction.

The saffron and chamomile seemed to work in many ways, including increasing the amount of tryptophan that is available to the brain and decreasing inflammation. Tryptophan is a precursor to the antidepressant neurotransmitter serotonin, and inflammation has recently gained attention for its role in depression.

This intriguing study suggests that drinking a safe, gentle tea made from saffron and chamomile could help improve the symptoms of depression.

Interestingly, these two herbs have met once before. A recent study of menopausal women found that a combination of fennel, chamomile and saffron helped the physical symptoms of menopause. But, like in the present study, it also found that the herbal combination helped the psychological symptoms (J Caring Sci September 2019;8(3):181-9).


Heliyon. 2022 Oct;8(10):e10774


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