Many and varied, the applications of Aloe vera are good medicine. It is a thick, short-stemmed plant that stores water in its leaves. It is widely used in the cosmetic, pharmaceutical and food industries, and has an estimated annual market value of $13 billion globally.
Aloe vera is well recognized by its thick, pointed and fleshy green leaves, which can grow to about 12-19 inches (30-50 cm) in length. This is what the Aloe vera plant looks like:
Each leaf is full of a slimy tissue that stores water, which makes the leaves thick. This slimy, water-filled tissue is the “gel” we associate with Aloe vera products. The gel contains most of the bioactive compounds in the plant, including vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants.
Has antioxidant and antibacterial properties, antioxidants are important and powerful antioxidants, which belong to a large family of substances known as polyphenols (see http://vitaminagent.com/5089-2/).
These polyphenols, along with several other compounds in Aloe vera, can help inhibit the growth of certain bacteria that can cause infections in humans. It accelerates the healing of burns, especially sunburn when used topically. The protection of uterine vitality during pregnancy is well accepted.
Its role in nourishing and protecting the intestinal lining is also well founded and popularizing in allopathic biomedicine these days due to the high legitimization of gut-health as an essential system for all metabolic, regenerative, immune, cognitive, strength and the list goes on for how the intestinal microbiome health profoundly reflects our state of health.
As you travel you world to investigate how different cultures and medical systems use Aloe, you keep finding more applications.
In fact, the FDA first approved Aloe vera ointment as an over-the-counter medication for skin burns back in 1959. Studies suggest that it is an effective topical treatment for first- and second-degree burns.
Please send your comments, questions and experiential anecdotes about this great plant.