Spices can benefit your health, especially saffron. 46 patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease were assessed for cognitive function and either given 15 mg of saffron twice a day for 16 weeks or a placebo (Akhondzadeh S, et al. 2010).
The saffron produced significantly better results on cognition than the placebo. What kind of side effects can you expect if you take saffron? Well, if you feel depressed, you may get in a better mood. When researchers compared saffron and Prozac while treating patients with mild to moderate depression, they found that saffron worked as well as Prozac (Noorbala AA, et al. 2005).
Akhondzadeh S, Sabet MS, Harirchian MH, Togha M, Cheraghmakani H, Razeghi S, Hejazi SSh, Yousefi MH, Alimardani R, Jamshidi A, Zare F, Moradi A. Saffron in the treatment of patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease: a 16-week, randomized and placebo-controlled trial. J Clin Pharm Ther. 2010 Oct;35(5):581-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2710.2009.01133.x.