Aloe Vera- the beneficial uses of this plant

Aloe Vera plant’s gel has a ton of health and wellness benefits 

Aloe Vera is a popular medicinal plant that people have used for thousands of years. Aloe Vera, or Aloe barbadensis, is a thick, short-stemmed plant that stores water in its leaves. It is best known for treating skin injuries, but it also has several other uses that could potentially benefit health.

The cosmetic, pharmaceutical, and food industries use Aloe Vera extensively, and the plant has an estimated annual market value of $ 13 billion globally. Aloe Vera is known for its thick, pointed, and fleshy green leaves, which may grow to about 12–19 inches (30–50 centimeters) in length.

Each leaf contains a slimy tissue that stores water, and this makes the leaves thick. This water filled tissue is the “gel” that people associate with aloe Vera products. The gel contains most of the beneficial bioactive compounds in the plant, including vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and antioxidants.

Antioxidants are important for health. Aloe Vera gel contains powerful antioxidants belonging to a large family of substances known as polyphones. These polyphones, along with several other compounds in aloe Vera, help inhibit the growth of certain bacteria that can cause infections in humans.

Aloe Vera is well known for its antibacterial, antiviral, and antiseptic properties. This is part of why it may help heal wounds and treat skin problems. People most often use Aloe Vera as a topical medication, rubbing it onto the skin rather than consuming it. In fact, it has a long history of use in treating sores, and particularly burns, including sunburn.

For example, a review of experimental studies found that aloe vera could reduce the healing time of burns by around 9 days compared with conventional medication. It also helped prevent redness, itching, and infections.

Popular since ancient Egypt, the plant is native to North Africa, Southern Europe, and the Canary Islands and today is grown in tropical climates worldwide. And what’s more, researchers are only just beginning to learn of the myriad uses of it.

Here are some important benefits of Aloe Vera.

Relief from heartburn

A 2010 review suggested that consuming 1 to 3 ounces of aloe gel at mealtime could reduce the severity of Gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD), a digestive disorder that can lead to heartburn. It has also been shown to relieve other digestive issues. The plant’s low toxicity makes it a safe and gentle remedy for heartburn.

Great as mouthwash

A 2014 study for the Ethiopian Journal of Health Sciences found aloe Vera extract to be a safe and effective alternative to chemical-based mouthwashes. The plant’s natural ingredients include a healthy dose of vitamin C, which helps to block plaque. It is also a great relief if you have bleeding or swollen gums.

Can lower blood sugar

A study in Phytomedicine: International Journal of Phytotherapy and Phytopharmacy says that taking two tablespoons of Aloe Vera juice per day can help to lower blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes. Caution: The juice along with diabetes medications could possibly lower your glucose count to dangerous levels, so make sure to consult a doctor first.

Keep produce fresh

Aloe gel may be helpful in keeping fruits and vegetables fresh, thereby eliminating the need for dangerous chemicals to extend the shelf life of produce. A study published online in 2014 by the Cambridge University Press focused on tomato plants coated with aloe gel. The report showed evidence that the coating successfully blocked the growth of many types of harmful bacteria on the vegetables.

Potentially fight breast cancer

Research published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine looked at the therapeutic properties of a special compound in aloe leaves. The authors suggested that it shows the potential of slowing the growth of breast cancer. However, more studies are needed for a conclusive statement on this.

                                                                        Rukhsana Manzoor Deputy Editor


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