Held in high esteem as one of nature’s most potent healers, information regarding the use of aloe vera dates back nearly 5,000 years, to early Egyptian times. Today it continues to be revered for use both topically and internally. The bulk of the aloe vera leaf is filled with a clear gel-like substance, which is approximately 99% water and different parts of the plant are used to achieve different effects on the body.
Aloe vera uses
Aloe vera gel, found when you break open the green leafy skin, is often used topically to treat skin conditions. It’s commonly known as a skin healer and moisturiser and is dramatically effective on burns of all types. It’s also beneficial for healing and soothing cuts, insect stings, bruises, acne, and blemishes. Aloe also acts as an analgesic, helping relieve pain from sunburn. Due to aloe’s high water content and stickiness, it’s a great way to hydrate, moisturize and rejuvenate the skin. Aloe helps supply oxygen to the skin cells, increasing the strength and synthesis of skin tissue and induces improved blood flow to the skin through capillary dilation.
Aloe vera juice, primarily produced from the green outer leaf, is used internally to treat all kinds of conditions. 98-99 percent pure aloe vera is known to aid in the treatment of stomach disorders, ulcers, constipation, haemorrhoids, rectal itching, colitis, immune disorders, varicose veins and arthritis.
Aloe vera for digestive health and detox
As you are no doubt aware, a properly functioning digestive tract is one of the keys and foundations of good health and aloe has been cited as one of the most common and effective natural remedies for treating digestive issues. Aloe vera is known to soothe and cleanse the digestive tract, which helps to improve digestion. It helps with both constipation and diarrhea, helping to regulate elimination cycles in whatever way you need. Aloe vera can also help to decrease the amount of unfriendly bacteria in our gut, keeping our intestinal flora in balance.
Aloe vera is a gelatinous plant food and the main benefit to consuming this type of food in your diet is that it helps to detoxify the body. The gel moves through the intestinal tract, absorbing toxins along the way to get removed through the colon. Aloe vera also helps to alkalize the body, balancing overly acidic dietary habits, which lends to its further detoxification properties.
It’s no wonder that aloe vera is used to help such a variety of ailments as it contains over 200 active components including vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, polysaccharides, and fatty acids. The polysaccharides in aloe vera juice stimulate macrophages, which are the white blood cells of your immune system that fight against viruses which makes it a popular dietary supplement for immune enhancement.
As you can see, aloe vera has been used for centuries to help treat a wide range of conditions! In the modern day, it is most commonly consumed in the form of dietary supplement capsules, or sold as a liquid juice. Put simply, Aloe is “vera” good for you!
Article by Renée Leonard-Stainton, Naturopath & Nutritionist
Renée Naturally – www.reneenaturally.com