Aloe Vera – one of my favorite herbs. I have grown Aloe Vera in my yard for as long as I have lived in Florida. According to the nursery folks, the sandy soil of Florida is great for growing this special healing plant. Of course you can also grow it in a pot in your house. But what do you really know about ALOE VERA? Let me introduce you!
There are various types of Aloe Vera Plants. Their varying synonyms include: Aloe lanzae, Aloe barbadensis, Aloe indica, Aloe Vera liliaceae, etc. No matter the variety, they all share the same basic traits.
The Aloe Vera plant is centuries old. It goes as far back as 6000 years B.C. and is even mentioned in the bible. It can be used internally and externally. Originally from North Africa, India, and the Caribbean, it as well can be grown in any other frost-free country or area. Here in the U.S it can be purchased in most Garden Centers. In actuality, there are more than 400 species. They can have short stems, long stems, and even be trees. They grow best in tropical climates. The leaves are thick, fleshy, green to grey green with white flecks or no flecks, tapering, pointed with spiny teeth along the edges. The roots are strong, light brown and fibrous. They can produce a flowering stem, with spikes of narrow, trumpet-shapes, yellow or orange flowers, and yes – they grow babies, offshoots for propagation.
Aloe Vera plants, domestically, started out as ornamental house plants. Because it is a succulent, it can survive in areas of low rainfall, watering itself as needed. It does not do well in snowy and cold climates areas. I have seen very few bugs in my aloe garden, and my research tells me it is a plant species that is resistant to most insect pests. When I share my babies, I just pull one out of the ground and tell whoever, to just dig a hole and stick it in, give it a little water and it will grow beautifully.
Though, scientifically, it is said that Aloe extracts show no evidence for effective cosmetic or medicinal purposes, the cosmetic and alternative medicine industries claim otherwise. I have to go along with the alternative medicine claims about aloe being soothing, moisturizing, and healing. I have used it right from the plant to heal burns and other skin issues and The healing was almost overnight. Usual time is 2-3 days. I also put the gel in the purified water that I drink . Commercially you may see it as an ingredient in yogurt and some desserts; as well, the cosmetic industry uses it in a variety of products.
The only caution I have found is when you produce it yourself, the clear sap which covers the outer edges of the ‘gel part, called Aloin can be toxic, with side effects – abdominal cramps, and/or diarrhea – occurring when ingested, but not so much when applied topically. I have used it on me topically without any side effects. However, that was before I did this research. If you are going to extract the gel from the plant yourself, I suggest – for safety sake – that after you peel the outer part of the leaf away, that you immerse the gel part in water to rinse off the ALOIN.
During my research I found many You Tube demonstrations on how to extract the gel yourself. However, the one attached to this blog is the best one I found (in my opinion). It will be worth your while to watch.
WOW! What great information. Because of this I was brave enough to try this myself. Easy! The chiropractic doctor in the film put it in perspective for me. Additionally, for storage purposes, make your gel in small amounts. If you know you won’t be able to use it within a week or 2, then after you have blended it add a ? of Vitamin C powder, and the oil out of ? Vitamin E capsules. This will help it to keep in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.
Further research informed me that topical uses of Aloe Vera has not been associated with significant side effects. If you plan on taking Aloe Vera internally, I suggest you do so in small doses, mixed in water or juice, and be sure the ALOIN has been removed. If buying it bottled in the store, be sure to check the ingredient label and follow the usage directions. You will want to buy Aloe Vera Juice as 100% Organic.
For me Aloe Vera is a wonderful healthy, healing, herbal plant. It has many uses and many benefits. Supplement benefits include: vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B6, C and E. Abundant in minerals, they include: calcium, iron,potassium, manganese, copper, selenium chromium and etc., amino acids, protein, plant sterol fatty acids. It is great for digestion, detoxing, oxygen support throughout the body, disinfectant – internally for infection, reduces inflammation, eases constipation, and is easy to get.
(Research sources include: Wikipedia, Mayo Clinic, The Complete Book of Herbs (Lesley Bremness), Daily Natural Remedies and many more.)
As I reiterate often, everyone is different. It is up to you to decide if you want to explore this subject. Remember, everything in moderation until you know how your body reacts. For me, I had no questions, as I have used it for many, many, years.
TRY IT, YOU MIGHT LIKE IT! and GOD BLESS!