The Aloe vera plant is native to Africa. More than 200 varieties of the plant can be found in different areas of the world. The plant has many nutritional uses and its extracts can be used as medicine in many cases. It is used in varied forms including gel form for tropical application, pill form for oral administration, juice form, etc. The plant can be used as an astringent, inflammatory agent, as a cell growth stimulator, pain reliever and for many other medicinal purposes. In this article, we will explore the top seven health benefits of this plant.
Health benefits of Aloe vera
1. Digestive benefits
The Aloe vera plant can be used for healing irritable bowel syndrome. It helps the body to absorb the essential nutrients like water, minerals, fibers, proteins, fatty acids, and vitamins more effectively. The enhanced digestion of these elements in the digestive tract helps in maintaining the heath of the body. Digestive problems can also arise by improperly chewing the food or consuming the wrong food items. The nutrients of the food can be broken down to smaller particles by Aloe vera, thus helping in improving the digestive system of the human body. It can also repair the damaged tissues found in the gut and can stimulate the digestive glands of the human body. You can drink the aloe vera juice to improve your digestive system.
2. Treatment of ulcers
The undigested and toxic build up of the stomach walls can be flushed out by using aloe vera juice. The non-nutrient elements get broken down and are flushed away and the nutrients are absorbed by the stomach in a process known as colonic irrigation. Aloe vera gel can provide a soothing effect on the ulcers. The exact physiological mechanism is not yet known but clues are that the complete extract of the aloe vera juice provides this healing effect. Aloe vera juice can help in lessening the yeast formation, normalize the alkaline or acidic balance, encourage bacteria in the digestive tract, and regularize the processing of bowels. It can cause a reduction in the excess acid content of the stomach and can reduce the lesions on the lining of the stomach. You can take the advice of a doctor or health care provider or can drink the aloe vera juice in moderate amounts to get the ulcer healing benefits.
3. Healthy skin
The plant can help in healing the frostbite, wounds, burns, and sunburns. The anti-inflammatory and soothing effect of Aloe vera is due to the presence of magnesium and salicylic acid in the plant. The extracts of the plant help in reducing the pain and inflammation in the infected areas and increase the blood flow to these areas. Aloe vera can also be used to moisturize the skin. The plant can help the skin to balance its pH levels and can give a smooth and healthy skin. The vitamins and minerals that are contained in the plant can reach the innermost layers of the skin and can help in skin conditioning. The plant can also help in fighting the skin aging process as it has natural oxidants like vitamins A, C and E that are used in the cosmetic industry for improving the skin’s elasticity and reducing the negative signs of skin aging. You can use the aloe vera gel and can drink the aloe vera juices for getting the skin benefits.
4. Weight loss
The plant can help in losing weight by removing the excess water content of the body. The body metabolism processes require vitamins like B12. The plant can make these vitamins more readily available to the body. The body can therefore utilize energy efficiently. The plant also helps in reducing the occurrence of false hunger pangs and the body fatty acid contents. The plant also has high proportions of collagen protein, which eases the process of weight loss and muscle development. Drinking of aloe vera juices in right amounts can help you to lose weight.
5. Acne treatment
Millions of people around the world face the acne problem. The severity of acne can result in blemishes, skin discolorations, scarring and can cause blemishes on skin. Aloe vera has proven itself in treating acne effectively. Many acne treatment products also contain the Aloe vera extracts, as it contains the polysaccharides that help in regenerating the skin and promoting its growth. For treating the acne scars, red acne marks and swelling, the extracts of the plant can be applied directly to the effected areas.
6. Improvement of immune system
The body can obtain the micronutrients, amino acids, enzymes, vitamins and minerals from the Aloe vera plant. The plant extracts can help the body revive itself form dietary inadequacies. The synergic properties of the plant can help the minerals to work in tandem. The plant also has the anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties and thus helps the body in fighting allergies like asthma and cold. Aloe vera plant also contains serine, which increases the stamina and helps in bolstering the immune system.
7. Fighting heart disease
The juices of the Aloe vera plant can enlarge the blood vessels and dilate the capillaries, thus helping to improve the circulation of blood in the heart. The plant extract can also cause the strengthening of arteries and veins in human body. Due to the presence of Beta-sitosterol, a plant sterol structurally resembling cholesterol, it can help in lowering the cholesterol level of the body. The plant extract can improve blood circulation, regulate the blood pressure, and lower the cholesterol content of the body.
The Aloe vera plant belongs to the lily family and some people can be allergic to it. The juices and extracts of the plant can have side affects like diarrhea and cramping. According to Mayo Clinic, using Aloe vera for more than a year can result in the increased risk for the person having colorectal cancer. It can also cause lowering of blood sugar level and therefore diabetes patients should use it with caution.