A new short-term pilot study in children and teens 6-17 years old with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has shown saffron to be as effective at controlling symptoms as methylphenidate, the commonly prescribed drug Ritalin. Saffron may be a promising herbal alternative for treating ADHD, particularly for the 30% of patients who do not respond to or cannot tolerate stimulants like methylphenidate, as reported in an article published in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology.
Saffron as effective at controlling symptoms as methylphenidate
The article entitled “Crocus sativus L. Versus Methylphenidate in Treatment of Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: A Randomized, Double-Blind Pilot Study” was coauthored by Sara Baziar, MD, Ali Aqamolaei, MD and colleagues from Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Iran. The researchers note that saffron also has anti-depressant and memory-enhancing properties. They compared the effects of Crocus sativus L. to methylphenidate in 54 patients over a 6-week period and showed no significant difference in effectiveness as well as similar frequency of adverse effects.
‘An interesting study with intriguing findings’
“This is a very interesting study and an intriguing finding. It is worthy of replication and further study to understand the mechanism of action,” says Harold S. Koplewicz, MD, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology and President of the Child Mind Institute in New York.
- Baziar S, Aqamolaei A, Khadem E, et al. Crocus sativus L. Versus Methylphenidate in Treatment of Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: A Randomized, Double-Blind Pilot Study. J Child Adolesc Psychopharmacol. 2019
Razi Berry is the founder and publisher of the journal Naturopathic Doctor News & Review that has been in print since 2005 and the premier consumer-faced website of naturopathic medicine, NaturalPath. She is the host of The Natural Cancer Prevention Summit and The Heart Revolution-Heal, Empower and Follow Your Heart, and the popular 10 week Sugar Free Summer program. From a near death experience as a young girl that healed her failing heart, to later overcoming infertility and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia through naturopathic medicine, Razi has lived the mind/body healing paradigm. Her projects uniquely capture the tradition and philosophy of naturopathy: The healing power of nature, the vital life force in every living thing and the undeniable role that science and mind/body medicine have in creating health and overcoming dis-ease. Follow Razi on Facebook at Razi Berry and join us at Love is Medicine to explore the convergence of love and health.