Finally, Life Extension Foundation Magazine’s July 2013 issue is available online with its article about the use of the spice saffron for the treatment of many brain and mood dysfunctions as an alternative to drugs. (If the hyperlink above doesn’t work, you can find it at the path below.)
Let me just say first that I have absolutely NO idea whether saffron will work to quiet the stuck music/AMLs (auditory memory loops). But since the conventional drug treatments for the AMLs we experience have also been known to CAUSE the AMLs, and saffron seems to do good things without bad side effects, this natural solution might be worth trying for our affliction.
Here are a few key reasons that make me think saffron might be worth trying for AMLs:
1. In human studies, saffron was as effective for mild to moderate depression as Prozac and Tofranil…without the side effects.
2. In animal studies, saffron was effective in reducing anxiety and OCD behaviors and increasing total sleep time.
3. In human studies, saffron decreased compulsive, between-meal snacking by 55%.
4. In human studies, saffron proved as effective as Zoloft for improving mild to moderate Alzheimer’s symptoms without the bad side effects.
5. And by the way, saffron not only doesn’t have the sexual side effects of antidepressant drugs, it can reverse the sexual side effects and improve libido even in people who are still taking the antidepressant drugs.
So my logic is that if saffron works as well as drugs for depression, anxiety and OCD without side effects, perhaps it might calm down whatever is going on in our crazy brains that makes us play music over and over.
If nothing else, if some of us are taking those drugs…either because our doctors have thought the drugs might cure us, or because having this affliction is depressing…maybe we can get off those drugs or at least add saffron to offset the sexual side effects.
I don’t know about you, but for me, loss of sex drive is not not JUST about sex, it is about all forms of passion. If I can’t feel passion for sex, I also can’t feel it for music or books or movies or art or a beautiful sunset. I’m a writer and without my passions I literally cannot create…I cannot feel. So this is a big deal to me. Since several of you with this affliction are musicians, I suspect your passions are similarly critical to who you are, not just what you do.
I have bought 2 bottles of saffron, which amounts to a 2-month supply. Most of the saffron studies showed results in 4 to 8 weeks, so I figured this would give it a fair test. However, I’m not the best subject for the experiment, since I’ve quieted my AMLs by adjusting my hormones. And with the stupid vertigo still lingering just a bit, I’m not in the mood to go off my hormone regimen to let the AMLs come back right now.
So with all the caveats in the world including–This is for information only. Please consult your doctor before trying anything!!! —I will be interested to see if anyone out there who actively has the AMLs will try saffron and report back to us with your results.
If you do try it, be sure to take the dosages used in the studies. Try not to change anything else during the “study” period. And try to keep a daily log rating your symptoms on some kind of scale to show whether they change at all, in which direction, and how soon. Then let us know what happened.
I’m not going to get my hopes up just yet, but my feeling is that nature probably offers everything we need to be healthy. Granted, not everything “natural” is good for us–nature makes plenty of poisons too. But if we can eat saffron in rice, it’s probably not going to hurt us as a supplement. Though even that rule should be tempered with the reminder that even the most benign things, consumed in excess, can harm or kill us.
So do your homework, check with all the experts you trust, and let us know if you decide to be a guinea pig.
Hope you are all having a safe, happy and crazy-music-free Fourth of July.