A recent study conducted by Italian and Australian researchers has found that saffron, the Indian spice that gives curry its color, is capable of reversing age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the most common cause of blindness in the elderly.
In the trial, conducted at Italy’s Policlinico Gemelli, researchers gave one group of study participants a saffron pill for three months, followed by a placebo for another three months. A second group was given the supplements in reverse order, according to the Telegraph.
The researchers found that all respondents who took the pill showed significant improvements in their eyesight. However, the visual benefits disappeared after each volunteer stopped taking the supplement.
"The outcome of this experiment was remarkablesignificant improvement in vision after several weeks of taking saffron in pill form, which reversed when the patients were taken off it," said professor Jonathon Stone of the Vision Center at the University of Sydney.
"This is very encouraging for a non-invasive way to treat certain important eye diseases," he added.
Meanwhile, earlier studies using animals have indicated that a diet high in saffron can also help protect the eyes from the damaging effects of bright light.