Aloe Vera is the herb typically found in home herb gardens and Aloe barbadensis (Curacao aloe) the species in the herb trade in the United States.
Aloe species range in size from little one inch miniatures to massive plant colonies consisting of hundreds of 2 foot diameter plants.
Although most Aloes have some medicinal or commercial value, the most commonly known is the Aloe barbadensis ... commonly referred to as Aloe vera.
Please note that this webste: www.library.okstate.edu/.../plants.htm lists Aloe as toxic to pets. Copied below for your info:
Common Name: Aloe, Barbados Aloe, Torch Plant
Toxic Principle: Homonatoloin, Aloin, Dried juice [latex], Anthraquinones barbaloin, Anthraquinone or Anthracene glycosides
Clinical Signs: Vomiting, Diarrhea, Red Urine, Skin irritation, Kidney Inflammation
The cactus-like aloe is a favorite houseplant and home remedy for burns, scrapes, cuts, and scratches. It has been used for millennia to treat skin problems.
Aloe Vera is a detoxifier and cleaner of the digestive tract and urinary system.
Speed Wound Healing: Pinch off a leaf, squeeze out the gel and dab it onto the wound. It helps with anesthesia and inflammation, as well as accelerating wound healing. Apply the aloe leaf treatment several times a day though.
- This should not replace medical or veterinary care. Discuss with your medical professional first.
Liver Problems - Aloe Detox (a concentrate of aloe vera and herbs that is available at your local health food store). The manufacturer reports that Aloe Detox needs to be refrigerated (obviously). After opening, it will keep for 7 to 9 months. Another recommended brand is "Lily of the Desert Aloe Detoxifying Formula." It is available over the following websites: http://www.vitacost.com; http://www.amazon.com; http://www.internatural.com/ingr/ingr199340.cfm. It is also available at better health food stores, such as Whole Foods.
Other Health Benefits:
- Aloe vera has anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties as well as lowering high cholesterol, boosting oxygenation of the blood and many other benefits.
- Aloe creams usually relieve symptoms of seborrhea in 4 to 8 weeks.
- Aloe "juice" lowers blood sugars of diabetics and helps relieve ulcerative Colitis.
- Most of the benefits are derived from drinking the aloe vera gel as part of a blended smoothie recipe.
The outer skin has essentially no value, but because it is commercially easier and less expensive to utilize the entire leaf, 'whole leaf' Aloe juice has been hyped as the 'best'. This is not the case.
Birds benefit greatly from ingesting the juice of the Aloe Vera plant. Bird owners report that they cut off small sections of the Aloe Vera leave and feed it to their pet birds.
Fresh gel from the leaves are superior to Aloe Vera gel bought commercially. As soon as you cut off a section, the clear gel will come oozing out. The plant is easy to grow in most areas. It needs, however, to be grown organically -- without the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides.
*NOTE: Even though Aloe Vera is helpful for many birds, some rare birds may have a reaction to Aloe Vera. Spray one of your fngers and touch your bird's foot. Leave for 24 hours and see if an reaction occurs
- How to Harvest Fresh Aloe Vera Gel - Tips on harvesting aloe vera
All Aloes are semitropical succulent plants, and may only be grown outdoors in areas where there is no chance of freezing. However, they make excellent house plants when they are given sufficient light.
Potted Aloes benefit from spending the summer outdoors.
Older specimens may even bloom, producing a tall stock covered with bright colored coral flowers. Aloe flower nectar is a favorite of hummingbirds!
The clear, slightly slimy gel collected from the fleshy part of the leaf is taken internally for its antioxidant, anticancer, antiviral, and immunostimulant effects, or applied directly to the skin to soothe inflammation and accelerate healing. Aloe gel is used fresh or stabilized. "Bitter aloe" is a dried latex taken from the "peel" of the leaves, more precisely the double wall of the leafs water sacs. When bitter aloe is first extracted from the leaf, it is yellow, but it turns brown as it dries. Acemannan is a complex carbohydrate chemically extracted from the gel. It is used in experimental pharmaceutical preparations as a treatment for viral infections and cancer. Acemannan is not a whole herb product.
Aloe is used to treat eczema (atopic dermatitis), frostbite, psoriasis, and wounds from cosmetic dermabrasion and dental procedures involving the gums. Generally, best results are obtained when the wound only involves the upper layers of the skin. Aloe is not recommended for deeper wounds because it causes the skin to tighten too soon, hindering the recovery of the deeper layers.
The herb contains at least seven antioxidant compounds that prevent the production of leukotrienes, chemical agents of inflammation released by mast (white blood) cells. Aloe gel releases natural salicylates, compounds related to aspirin, and relieves pain as it encourages healing. Aloe gel is also useful for treating genital herpes.
One study found that using an aloe cream reduced the average time for healing from 12 days to 5, and that herpes lesions were 10 times more likely to be completely healed within 10 days with aloe treatment, compared to a placebo. Aloe is also useful for treating seborrhea, a condition of red, scaly, oil eruptions on the eyelids, eyebrows, nose, ear, upper lip, chin, chest, and groin.
Aloe creams usually relieve symptoms of seborrhea in 4 to 8 weeks. Aloe "juice" lowers blood sugars of diabetics and helps relieve ulcerative colitis.
Detoxifier and cleaner of the digestive tract and urinary system. Aloe Detox is a concentrate of aloe vera and herbs that helps to detoxify the system. The manufacturer reports that Aloe Detox needs to be refrigerated (obviously). After opening, it will keep for 7 to 9 months.
Aloe gel is an extraordinarily safe herb. There are no contraindications for its use on the skin, although diabetics who drink aloe juice should monitor their blood sugars to make sure the combination of aloe and medications is not excessively effective.
Internally it is not recommended while nursing or pregnant and it is a bulk forming laxative and adequate fluids must be taken. Not recommended for long term use.
Information contained on this website is provided as general advice only and does not replace the recommendation of a medical professional. Before beginning any treatment protocol, please consult with your doctor and/or vet.
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