Aloe vera is quite an incredible medicinal plant and is full of nutritional benefits. It is a succulent plant and part of the lily family (Liliaceae). It also comes from the same family as garlic and onions.
Aloe Vera has both internal and external applications
I love to juice aloe and use it in my clear skin juicing recipe. Recently, I have started making fresh aloe vera salads. I also like to add aloe to my smoothies to gain some of the benefits of this incredible plant.
N.B.: As a result of the tremendous amount of emails I now receive each week about aloe vera, I will include here: I do not consume it every day. It is medicinal, and like all plant medicines, should not be consumed daily. I use my intuition when working with plant medicines, and seldom consume them more than a couple of times a week. When I use it in my smoothies or juices, I cut a piece of aloe about 1 inch long, open up the skin, and only add in the clear inner gel of the aloe plant.
Be sure to read the last section about over-use of this plant as well as dose recommendations. I consume fresh aloe because that’s what I have access to it.
Top 12 Benefits of Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera contains over 200 active components including vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, polysaccharide, and fatty acids. A broad range of remedies has Aloe in them! The leaf is mainly filled with a transparent gel-like substance, which is approximately 99% water. Humans have used aloe therapeutically for over 5000 years – now that’s a long-standing track record! The list of benefits and effects for this miraculous plant are many.
1. Aloe Vera Is High in Vitamins & Minerals:
Aloe Vera contains many vitamins including A, C, E, folic acid, choline, B1, B2, B3 (niacin), B6. It is also one of the few plants that contain vitamin B12. Furthermore, some of the 20 minerals found in Aloe vera include: calcium, magnesium, zinc, chromium, selenium, sodium, iron, potassium, copper, manganese.
2. Aloe Vera is High in Amino Acids & Fatty Acids
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. There are about 22 amino acids that are necessary for the human body defence and it is said that 8 of these are essential. Estimates of the amino acids found in aloe range from 18-20 amino acids, with all 8 essential amino acids. Furthermore, Aloe vera also includes quite an impressive range of fatty acids. It contains three plant sterols, which are important fatty acids – HCL cholesterol (which lowers fats in the blood), campesterol, and B-sitosterol. All are helpful in reducing symptoms of allergies and acid indigestion. Other fatty acids include linoleic, linolenic and mystic. Also, caprylic, oleic, palmitic, and stearic.
3. Aloe Vera is an Adaptogen
Aloe vera is a well-known adaptogen. An adaptogen is something that boosts the body’s natural ability to adapt to external changes and resist illness. It is thought that aloe’s power as an adaptogen balances the body’s system, stimulating the defense and adaptive mechanisms of the body. Thus, allowing you an increased ability to cope with stress (physical, emotional and environmental stress like pollution)
4. Aloe Helps with Digestion
Poor digestion is related to many diseases. A properly functioning digestive tract is one of the keys and foundations of health. Aloe is known to soothe and cleanse the digestive tract and help improve digestion. The interesting thing about taking aloe internally is that, because it is an adaptogen, it helps with either constipation or diarrhoea. Thus, contributing to regulate your elimination cycles in whatever way you need. It’s been an excellent remedy for people with problems such as irritable bowel syndrome as well as acid reflux. Aloe also helps to decrease the number of unfriendly bacteria and in our gut keeping your healthy intestinal flora in balance. Also, it is also a vermifuge, which means it contributes to rid the body of intestinal worms.
5. Aloe Helps in Detoxification
Aloe Vera is a gelatinous plant food, just like seaweeds and chia seeds. The main benefit to consuming gelatinous plant foods in your diet is that these gels move through the intestinal tract absorbing toxins along the way and get eliminated through the colon. Helping the proper elimination of waste from your body and assist the detoxification of your body.
6. Aloe Alkalizes the Body
Diseases cannot manifest in an alkaline environment. Most people are living and subsisting on mostly acidic foods. So, for excellent health, remember the 80/20 rule – 80% alkaline forming foods and 20% acidic. Aloe vera is an alkaline forming food. It alkalizes the body, helping to balance overly acidic dietary habits.
7. Cardiovascular Health
There hasn’t been a lot of studies conducted on aloe’s effect on cardiovascular health. However, there is some research to show that aloe vera extract injected into the blood, greatly multiplies the oxygen transportation and diffusion capabilities of the red blood cells. According to a study published in the 2000 issue of the British Medical Journal, beta sitosterol helps to lower cholesterol. By regulating blood pressure, improving circulation and oxidation of the blood, lowering cholesterol, and making blood less sticky, aloe vera juice may be able to help reduce the risk of heart disease.
8. Aloe Helps Boost the Immune System
As a result of the stress in our daily lives, we can all do with an immune system boost. The polysaccharides in aloe vera juice stimulate macrophages, which are the white blood cells of your immune system that fight against viruses. Also, Aloe is an immune enhancer because of its high level of anti-oxidants, which help combat the unstable compounds known as free radicals, contributing to the ageing process. (Free radicals are a by-product of life itself, it is a naturally occurring process, but we can overload ourselves with unnecessary free-radicals by living an unhealthy lifestyle). It is also an antipyretic which means it used to reduce or prevent fever.
9. Aloe Vera is Great for the Skin
Because of aloe’s well documented healing properties for the skin, aloe is one of the primary compounds used in the cosmetic industry. It is a known vulnerary, meaning it helps heal wounds. In addition, it is perfect for applying topically to burns, abrasions, psoriasis and even to bug bites. Aloe acts as an analgesic, working to help relieve the pain of wounds. Furthermore, it feels especially good to cut a stem of aloe, place it in the fridge and rub it on sun burnt skin.
The immediate soothing effect seems like an absolute lifesaver. Aloe is also an antipruritic. A substance that relieves or prevents itching. Aloe vera is an astringent, which causes the contraction of body tissues, typically used to reduce bleeding from minor abrasions. Due to its high water content (over 99% water), it is an excellent way to hydrate, moisturise and rejuvenate the skin. “Don’t put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t eat!” Aloe increases the elasticity of the skin making it more flexible through collagen and elastin repair. It is an emollient, helping to soften and soothe the skin. Furthermore, it helps supply oxygen to the cells, increasing the strength and synthesis of skin tissue. It also induces improved blood flow to the skin through capillary dilation.
10. Aloe vera is a: Disinfectant, Anti-biotic, Anti-microbial, Germicidal, Antibacterial, Antiseptic, Anti-fungal & Anti-viral:
Wow, I think that covers all anti- bases. Okay, I admit, that was just a sneaky way to add in another eight good reasons why you should keep an aloe vera as a handy (to mention beautiful) house plant. And, incorporate into your healthy lifestyle. Aloe vera’s active ingredients are sulphur, lupeol, salicylic acid, cinnamic acid, urea nitrogen and phenol. These are substances that prevent the growth of disease-causing microorganisms. Acting as a team to provide antimicrobial activity, and thus eliminating many internal and external infections. Aloe’s active against bacteria. It also helps to treat fungal and viral infections.
11. Aloe Helps Reduce Inflammation
Aloe Vera contains 12 substances, including B-sisterole, and as a result can contribute to slowing down or inhibiting inflammation. Painful joints due to stiffness may be eased, and help joint flexibility improved.
12. Weight Loss – A Secondary effect
Related Article: https://www.healthambition.com/health-benefits-aloe-vera/
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