Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Wonders of the Aloe Vera Plant

I can say I am guilty of only knowing aloe vera as a topical treatment for skin.  I really knew very little about its benefits when taken internally until just a few years ago.  There was never a time there wasn’t an aloe vera plant in the house.  If I had a cut, scrap, burn, rash...you name it,  mom would break a part of the plant off and apply the gel to skin.  It never failed, it brought immediate relief and the sore was better in just a few days.  
I always preferred the aloe gel over the bottle of Mercurochrome…ouch!

Aloe Vera is another one of those wonder plants.   Ancient Egyptians called it the “plant of immortality”.  Now that is saying something!  It contains more than 20 minerals.  A few of them being: calcium, magnesium, zinc, chromium, selenium, sodium, iron, potassium, copper, manganese.  It is also loaded with several vitamins:  A, C, E, folic acid, choline, B1, B2, B3 (niacin), B6 and B12 which is very uncommon in plants.

Other health benefits include: 
  • Helps lower cholesterol.
  • Helps stabilize blood sugar 
    • Studies have shown that those who drank aloe vera for 3 months saw a drop in their blood sugar levels and a boost in circulation.  Those who suffer from peripheral neuopathy, numbness of the feet and hands, could find aloe vera beneficial.
  • Eases inflammation and soothes arthritis pain.
    • For those making a dietary change by moving away from red meat, sugar, white flour, fried food and other foods that cause joint inflammation, will find aloe vera helpful in reducing joint pain.  However you have to make the move away from certain foods to make the aloe effective.
  • Helps with many types of kidney stones and will aid in some kidney problems.
  • Helps with ulcers, IBS, Crohn's disease, constipation and other digestive disorders.
    •  Aloe Vera is a gelatinous plant.  Like seaweed and chia as it moves through the intestinal track the gel absorbs the toxins and are eliminated through the colon.  It is great for the detoxification of the body
  • Aids in reducing high blood pressure naturally by treating the cause.
  • Aids in boosting the cardiovascular system and boosts the oxygenation of your blood.
  • Aloe Vera is a disinfectant, anti-biotic, anti-microbial, germicidal, anti-bacterial, anti-septic, anti-fungal & anti-viral.  All this means it is great for the skin.  Unless you are allergic to aloe vera it is great to heal whatever skin issue you may have.
    • Helps with acne, psoriasis, and eczema as it contains two hormones called auxin and gibberellins.  Both of these hormones have anti – inflammatory properties and help stimulate the growth of new skin cells.
    • Keep the skin hydrated and elastic.
    • Helps the skin fight aging because of the vitamins and minerals it contains.

You can drink aloe vera juice daily.  It is recommended to drink between 2 to 8 ounces in the morning daily.  However you need to be the judge of that.  It can be added to your juice or smoothies or can drink it “as is”.  Some people love the natural taste of aloe vera gel.  As for me it has to go in something… the morning freshly made juice.  The most important thing to remember is to drink it in its purest form.  Be careful of the brand you buy.

***Remember if you are on any medication and want to add aloe vera to your diet or treat a skin issue you much check with your doctor to make sure the change is safe for you.

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