Does saffron improve COVID19?

The world as we know it has changed significantly in the post-COVID era. NO completely effective drugs and treatments are not recognized for this virus. As we continue to deal with the fallout of the pandemic, the numbers of people dealing with depression, anxiety, and the consequences of long-term stress will likely continue to grow.

Mood disorders, an increasing issue

Stress induces the human body to produce cortisol, the “stress hormone,” which can impact virtually every system in the body. While short-term cortisol effects are natural and even beneficial, most people are dealing with long-term effects, which can cause symptoms ranging from fatigue, gastrointestinal issues, increased blood pressure, insomnia, and a host of others – most significantly, anxiety and depression.

In the next few years, we will see record numbers of people suffering from these mood disorders. Consumers have shown a steadily-increasing interest in herbal remedies in the previous decades, so it’s a natural conclusion that they will be looking for naturally-derived remedies for stress. One of the ingredients set to take center stage in this is saffron.

Saffron, a safe and effective solution

Saffron (crocus sativus) is a traditional herbal medication derived from the stigma and style of the autumn crocus flower. It’s been used as a medicinal treatment for over 3,600 years and has been recognized as being as effective for the treatment of depression as imipramine or fluoxetine.

However, unlike the pharmaceutical drugs, there were no severe adverse side effects reported with saffron usage. Positive effects in trial participants were noted in as little as one week, on a dosage of 30mg daily, although full effects were usually demonstrated with a minimum of two weeks of usage.

Saffron kills COVID19

Recently, saffron and its compounds were used to treat different viral diseases. Saffron extract and its major ingredients have shown antiviral effects. In this study, the steered molecular dynamics simulation was used for investigating the effect of four main components of saffron that include: crocin, crocetin, safranal, and picrocrocin as candidate for drug molecules, on COVID-19.

The binding energies between drug molecules and spike protein and the main protease of the virus were evaluated. The obtained results based on Lennard-Jones and electrostatic potentials demonstrated that crocetin has a high affinity towards spike protein and also the main protease of the virus. Also, the quantum mechanics calculations elucidated that the crocetin could overcome energy barrier of lipid bilayer with strong dipole moment and polarizability. The pharmacokinetic and ADMET properties proved that crocetin could be a suitable drug candidate. So, crocetin could be a promising drug for treatment of COVID-19.

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