Updated: Aug 24
Over 240 aloe species exist, but only a couple have medicinal properties. The most potent variety is aloe barbadensis, grown in North Africa, Spain, Asia, and America.
Aloe Vera has been used in folk medicine throughout the ages and is called the "plant of immortality." It is a member of the lily family and is cactus-like in its characteristics. Its leaves contain a healing gel with vitamins A, B, C, and E, calcium, digestive enzymes, and amino acids.
Aloe Vera is used externally for many skin ailments, and its antibacterial and antifungal qualities increase blood flow, stimulating the skin cells responsible for wound healing. The skin absorbs aloe vera up to four times faster than water and assists the pores of the skin to open and receive the moisture and nutrients of the plant.
In addition to the skin, it protects and heals the inner lining of the gut, the bronchial tubes, and the genital tract, aiding in the absorption of nutrients, helps to control blood sugar, increases energy production, promotes cardiovascular health, improving liver function, and boosts the immune system.
It is easy to find aloe vera juice at your local health food store but beware of the two different types on the shelf and their purity and ingredients. The first consideration is the whole leaf contains the entire leaf and is usually used for external use, where the inner filet only includes the inner gel of the leaf and is for internal use. Secondly, some brands are stabilized with citric acid, ph—stabilizers, carrageenan (thickening agent), and potassium sorbate (preservative and mold inhibitor).
Note: Pregnant women and children under five should not take Aloe Vera internally.
The purest product on the market is available from a manufacturer in Florida: www.aloe1.com. This is by far the best and purest product on the market, and even with the added cost of shipping, it is worth the added expense.