Before you buy ready to use aloe vera gel preparations check for purity and concentration of vital ingredients. Aloe vera or aloe barbadensis is a succulent plant proliferating in Africa, Asia, Europe and Americas. Aloe vera flourishes in warm sunny climates, needs minimum watering and has thick leaves with spines. The Aloe vera leaves contain a number of components, from 150 to 200, that have wide ranging effects on the human body. The leaves are the source of these beneficial compounds. Just next to the skin on the inside is the aloe latex layer that has a laxative effect. This also contains the important anthraquinones. The middle portion has a gel and is the most beneficial part. Since ancient times man has known the beneficial properties of aloe vera gel. Aloe vera gel finds extensive use externally and internally as medicine, tonic and rejuvenator.
50 Aloe Vera Gel Benefits & Uses
The ancient Indian system of holistic health, terms aloe as “Kumari” or Ghrut and there are a number of recipes for a variety of illnesses. The inner sticky, transparent gel like substance has a number of health benefits when consumed.
- Aloe vera gel is famously known for its anthraquinones, aloin and emodin, known anti-bacterial, antiviral and analgesics that heal wounds, cleanse the GI tract and help treat skin conditions such as burns.
- The gel of aloe vera is rich in a number of enzymes that alone and together help improve absorption of food and immune response.
- Essential amino acids like lysine, leucine, methionine and others form essential building blocks, giving aloe vera gel its nutritive properties.
- Important minerals like selenium, chromium, manganese, magnesium, copper, potassium, zinc and sodium help in cellular and metabolic functions from aloe vera gel.
- Aloe vera gel has Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and B12 along with C & E assist cell functions, hormone production and immune responses.
- Aloe vera gel has unique polysaccharides acemannan so important for cell metabolism, immunity and improved gastrointestinal functions.
- Saponins cleanse and remove bacteria, yeasts, fungi and virus.
- Salicylic acid in aloe vera gel is anti-inflammatory, analgesic and helpful in joint pains.
- Lignins in aloe vera gel benefit skin and hair, providing relief in psoriasis and eczema.
- In summer, aloe vera gel helps you keep cool and avoid problems associated with excess heat.
- Aloe vera gel health-giving since it contains amino acids, vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, B12, E and C; phyto-phenols and minerals such as sodium, copper, calcium, zinc, potassium, chromium, manganese and magnesium.
- Aloe vera gel soothes, relaxes and reduces inflammation of joints and muscles.
- The aloe vera gel also helps remove toxins from the GI tract and improves immune system.
- It is claimed that aloe vera gel helps lower blood sugar levels, control arthritis and reduce acidity.
- Aloe vera gel is said to strengthen teeth and gums.
- Aloe vera gel is an ideal tonic for the reproductive system.
- If you suffer from coughs, colds, bronchitis or respiratory disorders, regular use of aloe vera gel helps.
- Aloe vera gel also helps bowel movement. In fact excess results in diarrhea.
- Fatty acids HCL Cholesterol, B-sitosterol and campesterol help in allergies and indigestion.
- Aloe also helps you cope with stress, mental and physical, giving you better immunity.
- When digested aloe vera gel turns alkaline and helps maintain pH of blood and plasma.
- Aloe vera gel purifies the blood, reduces cholesterol, guards against cancer and protects against oxidative stress.
- There are less chances of kidney stones forming when you take aloe vera gel.
- Aloe vera gel accelerates healing of wounds and burns
- Aloe vera gel is a natural physical endurance booster
- A report in International Immuno pharmacology shows that the polysaccharides help increase levels of nitric oxide and have strong antitumor properties.
- Diabetics will welcome aloe vera gel since it reduces fasting blood sugar levels and triglyceride content.
- If you have sores in the mouth, aloe vera gel helps reduce inflammation and promotes quicker healing.
- Aloe vera gel is a potent liver tonic.
- Take it twice or thrice a week to keep your liver in top condition.
- Applying gel of aloe vera on burns helps promote quicker healing.
- Grind the roots to a paste with turmeric and consume it to have a healthy liver and spleen.
- When the gel is mixed with milk it is effective in gonorrhea and acidity.
- Aloe vera gel taken on empty stomach cures constipation.
- Aloe vera gel also helps reduce weight.
- Menstruating women experience least discomfort when they consume the aloe vera gel.
- If you have coughs, apply aloe vera gel mixed with turmeric on your chest and throat
- Aloe vera gel applied to teeth and gums cures toothache and stops gums from bleeding.
- Apply aloe vera gel mixed with turmeric to piles for relief.
- Aloe vera gel helps reduce ear ache
- Aloe vera gel is also efficacious in leukoderma.
- Aloe vera gel is highly nutritious since it contains essential amino acids such as leucine, threonine, valine, isoleucine, tryptophan, lysine and phenylalanine.
- Amino acids are the essential body building blocks and aloe vera contains maximum number
- Aloe vera gel compounds work synergistically to regulate bowel movement, absorb food, detoxify the system, prevent cancer, boost immunity, help control diabetes and heal wounds.
Aloe Vera Gel for Skin & Hair
- Rub fresh gel from aloe vera leaves on your face and hands. Aloe vera gel is a natural cleanser and antibacterial and keeps your skin fresh and glowing, keeping it naturally moisturized.
- Aloe vera gel is helpful in allergic reactions, in cases of eczema, in burns, wounds, psorias and sunburn.
- Aloe vera gel is efficacious in treating acne since it contains aloin and other antibacterial and anti-inflammatory compounds.
- Aloe vera gel is one of the best rubefacents, anti-biotics, anti-microbial, anti-fungal and antiviral agents for topical applications since it contains salicylic acid, cinnamic acid, Sulphur, lupeol, phenol and urea nitrogen.
- Applying aloe vera gel on your hair makes it silky smooth, lustrous and strong
- Aloe vera gel also helps reduce dandruff and lice.
Aloe Vera Gel & Other Forms of Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera belongs to the succulent species and has short thick, juice filled succulent leaves. The edges are serrated with tiny teeth. The botanical name is aloe barbadensis and it has many sub-species, with the plant found widely in Africa, Asia and other parts of the world. It belongs to the same family as lily, onions and garlic. Aloe has been known to man since 5000 years and has been used therapeutically, internally and externally in a variety of ailments and diseases.
For practical purposes juice is extracted from the inner gel of the leaves. Aloe vera extract contains over 200 active compounds including polysaccharides, fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, enzymes and amino acids. It has active phytochemicals such as mannans, polymannans, anthraquinone, anthrones, anthraquinones lectin and emodin and C-glycosides chiefly responsible for curative and restorative properties.
The gel extracted from the inside of the plant leaves is used for cosmetics, as medicine, as skin lotion, in beverages and in desserts. The best way to use aloe vera is to harvest fresh leaves, peel off the outer skin and use only the inner gel that can be crushed to extract the juice. This can be done at home. Commercial processors machine strip rinds, crush pulp and extract juice. Some processors crush the whole leaf and extract the juice, removing fibrous parts and aloe latex by filtration. Some manufacturers use only the inner gel portion. Before you use the aloe product, check to see if it is a whole leaf extract that can contain aloe latex or only the inner gel. Aloe extracts that include the mucilaginous polysaccharides are not effective and can cause adverse reactions such as cramps and diarrhea when consumed.
- Aloe extract is available as a liquid or as a gel.
- Only the gel has the maximum of beneficial compounds and should be used for internal consumption.
- Gel form is more concentrated and effective.
- Modern producers also offer freeze dried aloe vera concentrate.
- Again you get either the gel or extract of the entire leaf. 30 litres of freeze dried gel turns into 30 grams of freeze dried aloe vera extract powder, very potent and powerful.
- A measure of potency is molecular weight.
- Freeze dried aloe gel powder can have molecular weights from 1000000 to 2500000 daltons.
- Commercial diluted gel extracts may have low molecular weights of 150000 daltons, making them quite less effective.
- The best and most potent form of aloe vera is freeze dried powder if you must buy it.
- Of course, nothing matches the benefits of using fresh aloe leaf and carefully using only the central gel, something that is not possible for everyone.
- The central gel is antioxidant, balances blood sugar, reduces inflammation, supplies all vitamins, minerals and amino acids and boosts immune system to the point where it can reverse some symptoms.
- Pure, undiluted extract of only the inner gel has been found to be better when it comes to bioavailability of Vitamins C and E, according to research studies.
If you are buying commercially prepared supplements in the form of powders, pills, liquid or gel, another factor that influences potency is the way aloe vera is cultivated. Organically grown aloe vera, harvested at the right time after 3 years, is the best source of the most potent compounds.
Additionally, if the leaf has been hand filleted to remove central gel and process it alone instead of processing whole leaf and then filtering it out, the resulting composition is purer and more potent. When you buy aloe vera preparations, know about how the company harvested and processed aloe vera to be sure about its efficacy.
Another factor affecting potency of the aloe vera preparation is how quickly the gel is processed after harvesting and the stabilization method employed. Some companies will heat the gel and this inevitably destroys fragile compounds like vitamins. The best process is cold stabilization with minimum of additives.
Yet another important factor is concentration. If the gel or liquid you buy has less than 85% concentration, it is of little use. Again, the compounds must be active. Dried tablets or solutions that have been boiled will have lost much of the efficacious properties of aloe vera.
11 Precautions for Aloe Vera Gel
- The best and most potent form of aloe vera is the fresh gel consumed within minutes of cutting the leaf and scooping out the inner portion.
- Avoid whole leaf aloe vera juice because the skin is toxic, may cause diarrhea and if processing involves filtration, the process removes nutritious components as well.
- Aloe vera that has been boiled to concentrate destroys many of the nutritious vitamins and compounds.
- Tablets, powders and capsules are not effective as drying destroys its beneficial properties and does not help in proper absorption.
- Concentrates are made by drying aloe vera and reconstituting by adding some water. The natural water is lost and this reduces benefits you hoped to get.
- Avoid homogenized and filtered aloe vera because manufacturers simply crush the whole leaf and filter the mass which removes enzymes, vitamins, amino acids and minerals.
- So called health drinks containing aloe vera contain only a minor amount, not enough to give any significant benefits.
- Do not be fooled by pasteurized aloe vera since manufacturers take it as a short cut to more hygienic and expensive processes. Pasteurization may destroy some nutritional compounds.
- Look for how companies process the leaf, the process employed, molecular weight and related details to get an idea of just how much worth it is spending money on that juice, gel or powder.
- If you must buy and if you can get it, concentrated gel extract is the one to opt for. Tablets, capsules and freeze dried powder lose much of the desired properties during processing.
- Since aloe vera contains some toxic compounds, excess internal consumption is best limited to small quantities. Applied on the skin, it is safe and is used for a number of skin problems