You may have questions about saffron sensitivity, such as “Is saffron an allergen?” or “Can saffron cause allergies?”. If you also have such questions, be sure to read on in this article. If we want to answer whether saffron is allergenic in one word, the answer is yes, but there are conditions that we will address below.
Sensitivity refers to abnormal immune system responses to certain compounds known as allergens. Sensitivity to an allergen can be severe and immediate or delayed and severe. Tolerance to foods containing allergens is almost low, and exposure to small amounts can lead to harmful reactions. Resistant protein substances act as antigens and can stimulate the immune system. In response to this stimulation, antibodies (immunoglobulins) are produced.
The clearest reaction to producing immunoglobulins is M, G, or A. These immune system reactions are usually harmless. Allergens are proteins that produce a specific allergic reaction to immunoglobulin E.
Histamine is responsible for many of the allergy symptoms observed in immunoglobulin reactions. The most important symptoms of allergy are in the digestive system (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea), the skin (hives, eczema, itching, swelling), and the respiratory system (asthma, nasal mucosal edema, nasal edema, or throat swelling).
Symptoms of Saffron Allergy
Can you be allergic to saffron? Saffron is one of the thousands of spices with incredible color and fragrance. This expensive spice has many uses.
For many people who use this spice, the question always arises as to whether saffron is allergenic or what is the relationship between saffron and hives. This article will provide you with the necessary information about saffron allergy.
Saffron is one of the most effective and useful natural foods known as red gold due to its abundant properties. An allergic reaction to saffron is generally known as sensitivity to foreign substances in the body’s defense system.
These substances can be edible or pollen. Sensitivity occurs at different levels and can be severe, immediate, or mild. Saffron, like other foods, can cause allergic reactions in some people. In this article, we will fully examine saffron allergy.
Evaluation of Saffron Sensitivity
Like many foods, saffron can cause allergies in some people. You may have heard the terms saffron and hives together. One of the skin allergies that saffron can cause is hives.
Of course, any food can cause allergies in a few people. The compounds present in saffron, like many foods, can cause allergies, hives, coughing, asthma, and more.
Therefore, those who have not used saffron for a while can pay attention to all its symptoms when using it again to see the sensitivity of this plant on their body.
Also, children using saffron for the first time should check for allergies in their bodies to prevent allergies in future uses. Sensitivity is the body’s reaction to compounds in food.
Allergic reactions to saffron can range from mild to severe symptoms that can cause severe illness and damage to the body.
Relationship between Saffron and Hives
Overconsumption of spices or food can cause allergies and damage the body. Like other foods, Saffron should be consumed properly and in a balanced way so that instead of endangering our health with excessive and improper consumption, we can benefit from its advantages.
You may have heard the terms Saffron and hives together. Hives are a skin reaction to allergenic substances that occur in this way. According to research, saffron pollen can cause allergies, but its edible parts and stigma are rarely allergenic. As much as possible, you should identify the allergens in your body to prevent any allergies.
People with weak immune systems are also sensitive to food. So try to use vitamins and nutrients to strengthen our immune system so that our body can resist various allergies well.
According to research on Saffron and its compounds, it can cause allergies and hives in some people. But as a whole, it is a valuable and widely used food with applications in various food, pharmaceutical, and chemical industries.
The Impact of Saffron Quality on Allergies
The use of saffron dates back to ancient times. Saffron is naturally warm and dry and can be one of the best options for treating colds.
The best and highest quality saffron in the world is harvested in our country. This saffron is not only bought and consumed in domestic markets but also around the world.
Sometimes counterfeit saffron can also cause allergies. Counterfeit saffron contains additives and chemical dyes that can cause allergies and diseases in the body.
Therefore, the quality of the purchased saffron can directly relate to its sensitivity. Counterfeit saffron can cause irreparable damage to our health.
Therefore, we should always buy this medicinal and edible plant from reputable sales centers. High-quality saffron has successfully passed quality control tests in the laboratory and has a production date and health license.
Saffron is cultivated and harvested in many parts of our country due to its economic importance, and the pollen of this plant usually causes allergies in some people. Dry skin and hives are also among the skin sensitivity symptoms of this plant.
Examining Allergies to Saffron
Scoyee and his colleagues have studied the sensitizing effect of saffron on patients visiting allergy clinics. This study used extracts from saffron flowers (without pollen) and relatively pure pollen extracts, as well as a skin prick test.
According to the study results, 47 out of 267 patients (20%, 40%, 60%, and 80% extracts) showed sensitivity to one of the pollen extracts of saffron. Of this number, more than 3.4% of individuals were also sensitive to the extract without pollen. Clinical sensitivity symptoms included nasal allergies, hives, asthma, and constant coughing.
Feo and his colleagues also examined sensitivity to saffron flower components in two groups of workers in contact with saffron (50 people aged 6 to 75 years, with an average age of 32.6 years, 54% female and 46% male) and hospital patients in the allergy department (237 people, aged 5 to 62 years, with an average age of 28.6 years). The skin prick test and radioallergosorbent test (RAST) were used in this study.
According to the results, none of the individuals under study were sensitive to saffron stigmas. The skin prick and RAST tests were positive in the group of workers in contact with saffron. Of these three individuals, one had asthma, and two had nasal congestion.
Ten people in the second group (hospital patients in the allergy department) showed sensitivity to saffron pollen. In this study, a sensitizing substance with a profile similar to profilin was isolated and purified from saffron pollen and stigma.
Symptoms of Saffron Allergy
What is an allergy?
As we mentioned in the introduction, allergies are the body’s defense against external factors that appear unnatural in the immune system. The compounds that cause allergies are called allergens. The body and the immune system are not resistant to allergens, and a small amount of allergen can cause an allergy in the body. Digestive proteins act as an antigen and stimulate the immune system. As a result of this stimulation, antibodies (immunoglobulins) are produced in the body.
Allergy manifests with various symptoms in the body, and the most common symptoms indicating gastrointestinal allergy are nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, eczema, itching, swelling, and in the respiratory system, asthma, nasal mucosal swelling, nasal congestion, or throat swelling.
Research has been conducted on saffron allergy and whether saffron causes allergies. One of these studies was conducted in Iran by Dr. Scoyee. Scoyee and his colleagues evaluated saffron sensitivity in patients visiting allergy clinics. This study used extracts from saffron flowers (without pollen) and relatively pure pollen extracts.
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Saffron and Eczema
Regarding eczema, there is limited scientific evidence specifically linking saffron to treating or managing this disease. Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is a chronic inflammatory skin disease characterized by dry, itchy, and red patches on the skin. The causes can be different, including genetic, environmental, and immune factors.
While saffron may not directly affect eczema, some studies have shown that some of the bioactive compounds in saffron, such as crocin and crocetin, have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties could be useful for managing inflammatory skin diseases such as eczema.
When can we give saffron to children?
Introducing saffron to infants under 6 months old is generally not recommended. Breast milk or formula provides all the necessary nutrients for infants up to that age. The introduction of solid foods, including saffron, should be gradual and by the recommendations of healthcare professionals.
When it comes to introducing saffron to a child’s diet, several factors should be considered:
- Age: As mentioned, waiting until at least 6 months is generally recommended before introducing solid foods, including saffron.
- Allergies: Saffron is a spice, and like any other type of food, it has the potential to cause an allergic reaction. Introducing saffron to a child’s diet is recommended only after successfully tolerating other solid foods without any allergic reactions. If there is a family history of allergies, it is important to exercise caution before consuming saffron and consult with a pediatrician.
- Preparation: Saffron should be prepared properly before introducing it to a child’s diet. It is soaked in a small amount of warm water or milk to release its flavor and color. However, ensuring that saffron is properly diluted is crucial to prevent choking hazards or digestive issues.
- Quantity: When introducing saffron to an infant, start with very small amounts and gradually increase it as the child tolerates it well. Monitor your child for any adverse reactions or gastrointestinal discomfort.
Testing for sensitivity to these substances is done through a skin prick test. The results showed that 47 individuals included in the study were allergic to one of the compounds used. These individuals exhibited clinical symptoms such as runny nose, sneezing, asthma, and persistent cough after being allergic to saffron.
Can saffron cause allergies?
In general, saffron and its various components can cause allergies, and it cannot be said that saffron is not allergenic. It is a misconception that people can consume saffron without caution, and it is better to be careful when using it for the first time to avoid allergic reactions.
Especially with children, you should be aware of this point. In addition to children, people who consume saffron after a long time should also start with a small amount and use saffron as desired if no allergic symptoms are observed.
Unfortunately, one of the reasons for allergic reactions to saffron in some individuals is the use of fraudulent saffron. Some individuals may not be allergic to saffron, but they may be very sensitive to the consumption of fraudulent saffron.
Allergies cause symptoms and reactions, some of which can be severe and dangerous for the body’s health, so we should avoid creating allergies as much as possible. In the following article, we will examine ways to prevent allergies.
Identify the substances to which you are sensitive
Suppose you are one of the people who suffer from allergies. In that case, you should first identify all the substances you are allergic to, using specialized tests and experiments to find food and materials that contain these allergens more easily. It is usually recommended that people with high allergies do not use natural foods such as honey-containing pollen.
Get enough rest and sleep for at least 8 hours
If you have allergies, consult a doctor, even herbal and traditional medicines, before using any medication. Any chemical or traditional medication may contain substances that can cause an allergic reaction. The weaker and less active the body’s immune system is due to stress and high workload, the higher the risk of developing allergies.