The aloe plant originally came from Africa but is grown in most hot climates all over the world. The inner gel of the leaves, which are long, green, fleshy, and have spikes along the edges, are used medicinally.
Aloe has been historically used for many of the same conditions for which it is used today—particularly constipation and minor cuts and burns. In India, it has been used by herbalists to treat intestinal infections, suppressed menses, and colic.
What it does
Aloe vera gel contains compounds called mucopolysaccharides which have a soothing, cooling, astringent and healing action. It can help reduce inflammation and has anti-bacterial properties. It also contains Vitamin E, C Zinc, amino acids and esential fats making it a powerful antioxidant. The aloin content of aloe vera acts a potent laxative, so care should be taken to choose the appropriate product when using aloe.
Aloe vera with manuka is a particularly useful remedy for I.B.S.
|Cold sores||Eczema & Psoriasis||Haemorrhoids|
|Nappy rash||Skin infections/ulcers||Mouth ulcers|
|Minor burns||Ulcerative Colitis||Constipation|
Aloe vera gel is primarily used externally as topical application for treating sunburn, burns and minor injuries due to its powerful healing properties.
Aloe vera juice or capsules which contain aloin are used to treat constipation and should not be taken on a regular basis. Aloin can irritate the digestive system.
Aloin-free aloe is much gentler on the system and is used to soothe, protect and heal the mucous membranes of the digestive system. It also helps to eliminate toxins from the body.
Do not take aloe internally whilst pregnant or breastfeeding.
Generally, there are no side effects or contra-indications from using topical applications of aloe vera gel but it should never be used on severe burns which need medical attention.
Internal aloe should not be taken by children under 12 except under supervision of a qualified herbalist.
At the time of writing there were no well known negative drug interactions with aloe vera.