The Aloe Vera plant is a low, spiky, stemless, succulent plant of the genus Aloe. Its leaves are thick, fleshy and serrated. It has its origins in the Arabian Peninsula and grows naturally in dry, tropical climates. The plant is known for its astonishingly potent healing properties.
The Aloe Vera plant is also known as the “plant of immortality”. It was presented as funerals gifts to no less than the pharaohs of ancient Egypt, as depicted in stone carvings. Aloe Vera has been used for its healing properties for at least 6,000 years, to treat a variety of issues from burns and wounds, hair loss, haemorrhoids, to digestive issues.
Nowadays, the entire health and beauty industry has gotten behind the miraculous healing and wellness properties of Aloe Vera. Two components of the plant contain its active properties, which are used in health and beauty products: the clear gel, which is normally used as a remedy for skin conditions, and the yellow latex, which is used to alleviate constipation.
The benefits derived from Aloe Vera are mainly due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Aloe Vera contains vitamins and anthraquinones that have antioxidant properties, not to mention seven of the eight essential amino acids. It also contains enzymes, glycoproteins, fatty acids, and hormone that are anti-inflammatory.
Its anti-inflammatory properties bring relief to those afflicted with serious skin conditions such as psoriasis and acne. The Aloe Vera gel soothing effect can calm flare ups and reduce itchiness and inflammation.
We’ve all been treated with Aloe Vera for a sunburn at some point in our lives. Its cooling effect gives us relief from staying out in the sun for too long. But did you also know that Aloe Vera can help speed up the healing of wounds and cuts? That’s probably due to its vit. A, vit. C and vit. E content.
The latex in Aloe Vera contains aloin, an anthraquinone that gives Aloe Vera its laxative properties, to help speed digestive movements along.
Aloe Vera has also been used, traditionally, as a diabetes remedy to help lower blood sugar levels. However, people with diabetes who are also taking glucose lowering medication are advised to be careful as taking Aloe Vera may reduce blood sugar to dangerous levels. Please consult your doctor if you plan on using Aloe Vera for lowering blood sugar.
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