Aloe Vera – one of the more than five hundred species of succulent in the Aloe genus – has been used throughout history to treat both internal and external maladies. Aloe Vera gel is widely recognized for its ability to soothe pain and inflammation caused by burns, or more specifically those from sunburn. However, most people don’t recognize the full spectrum of health benefits offered by the whole of this amazing plant. Read on for a full list of everyday uses for the awesome natural remedy that is Aloe Vera.
1. Rich in Vitamins
– B1 (thiamin) – important for metabolic function, specifically in regards to the metabolism of carbohydrates.
– B2 (riboflavin) – needed for synthesis of other vitamins, including many other B vitamins. Also improves digestion and metabolism.
– B3 (niacin) – reduces LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglyceride levels while improving HDL (good) cholesterol. Also important for liver, kidney, heart, and intestinal function.
– B6 (pyridoxal phosphate) – necessary for metabolism of amino acids as well as for the release of glucose from stored glycogen in liver and muscle tissue.
– C (ascorbic acid) – functions as an antioxidant, stimulates collagen production, and plays an important role in many enzymatic reactions.
– B9 (folate) – needed for synthesis and repair of DNA, as well as for the production of healthy red blood cells.
– A (beta-carotene) – functions as an antioxidant, improves ocular health, and may reduce the risk of breast and ovarian cancer.
2. Excellent Source of Minerals
– Calcium – improves bone density, mental health, muscular function, vascular health. Also prevents osteoporosis in menopausal women.
– Zinc – promotes stronger immune health and is essential for around one hundred enzymatic functions in the human body.
– Copper – necessary for cardiovascular health, specifically for the transport and processing of oxygen in the blood.
– Iron – needed primarily for the transport of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood stream.
– Potassium – important for healthy brain and nervous system functions, as well as for regulation of bodily fluid levels.
– Magnesium – needed for hundreds of enzymatic processes including synthesis of DNA and RNA. Also promotes more efficient energy transfer throughout the body.
3. Contains 8 Essential Amino Acids
– Lysine – aids in the production of elastin and collagen which promotes healthy, younger-looking skin
– Valine – used for energy and cell regeneration in muscle tissue.
– Methionine – essential in small amounts for liver function and cardiovascular health.
– Leucine – stimulates increased muscle growth and improved muscular function. (Recommended to use in conjunction with Biotin.)
– Isoleucine – aids in the digestion of fatty acids and regulates blood-glucose levels. (Recommended to use in conjunction with Biotin.)
– Phenylaianine – used as an analgesic and antidepressant
– Histidine – aids in many enzymatic functions. Also an important component of respiration
– Glutamin acid – acts as a key component in cellular metabolism.
4. Digestive Aid
Aloe Vera juice can help with digestive problems. In much the same way Aloe Vera gel soothes burned skin, the juice of the Aloe plant soothes the lining of the stomach and intestines. Aloe juice taken in moderation can help to ease disorders like irritable bowel syndrome. It can also help be used to help heal stomach ulcers and regulate micro-flora population in the intestines.
Aloe Vera juice contains several chemical components which inhibit the growth of bacteria, fungi, germs, and other micro-organisms. These include sulphur, salicylic acid, cinnamic acid, lupeol, phenol, and urea nitrogen – yet another reason to keep Aloe Vera gel in the medicine cabinet.
6. Boosts the Immune System
Aloe Vera contains several polysaccharides which stimulate increased immune function. For this reason, Aloe Vera juice is often taken to ward off illness.
Also, as previously stated, Aloe juice contains anti-oxidant Vitamin C which further helps to strengthen the immune system against viral and bacterial attacks.
7. Fatty Acids
Aloe Vera juice contain three important plant sterols which have a positive effect on the human body.
– Lupeol – displays anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, anti-protozoal, anti-tumor, and chemopreventative characteristics.
– Campesterol – reduces absorption of cholesterol in the intestines.
– Beta-sitosterol – also reduces bad cholesterol and may aid in the treatment of some cancers.
Other fatty acids found in Aloe Vera include linoleic, linolenic, oleic, stearic, palmitic, myristic, and caprylic acids.
8. Powerful Detoxifier
Due to its gelatinous nature, Aloe Vera helps to detoxify as it passes through the digestive tract. Also, because it contains several mineral ions which aid the body in fluid transport and regulation, consumption of Aloe Vera juice can help you to eliminate toxins more efficiently through your skin via sweat.
9. Raise Your pH
Acidosis – a disorder where the body’s pH becomes too low – can cause all kinds of health problems such as increased susceptibility to illness and infection, mental and physical fatigue, loss of appetite, and disorientation. Acidosis may have a number of possible causes, but they all boil down to one basic solution: find a way to bring your body and blood pH back up to a neutral level. Here is where Aloe Vera juice comes in. Because of its high concentration of minerals, Aloe Vera is alkalizing meaning that it may be used to treat mild cases of acidosis.
10. Improve Skin and Hair Health
Aloe Vera gel offers several benefits for skin and hair. It is a fantastic natural moisturizer that is both light-weight and non-greasy. Anti-oxidant components in Aloe Vera also help to reduce early signs of aging. Polysaccharides contained in Aloe Vera increase the activity of microphages in blood which fight off infection and help heal wounds faster with less scarring. Aloe Vera gel has also been shown to stimulate production of collagen. The high levels of amino-acids in Aloe gel also increase the amount of energy available for cell regeneration. Aloe’s anti-microbial properties may help fight off scalp infections and prevent hair-loss. Finally, Aloe Vera gel is full of vitamins and minerals that promote healthy skin and hair.
As with anything, Aloe Vera gel or juice taken internally should be used in moderation. As always, it is recommended to consult with a licensed physician before starting any kind of long-term medicinal or herbal treatment. Also, please note that the information contained in this article is purely educational and is not intended to take the place of medications or to treat serious illness or injury.