All about Aloe Vera

(from Internet Resources)

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Author’s note:- The following information has been collated from the Internet. As such, it is at times contradictory and does not necessarily reflect the author’s opinion or commendation. Readers are advised to do further research before embarking on any internal treatment using Aloe vera. Our own Aloe vera gel is provided for external use only. Whilst it is 99.9% pure natural gel from the normally safe Aloe barbadensis plant, it does contain some small measure of preservative, without which it would rapidly deteriorate. Users of Aloe vera are also advised to test the product over a small area first, before proceeding. This is simply a wise precaution and, used topically, is most unlikely to cause any adverse reaction in the vast majority of users.

Contents

(scroll down to read all or click item from list)
* About Aloe Vera the plant
* Benefits and healing properties
* Nutrients in Aloe vera
* Flavonoids Found in Aloe Vera Plants
* Phytochemicals Found in Aloe Vera Plants
* Phytosterols Found in Aloe Vera Plants
* How to propagate Aloe Vera
* How to make usable Aloe Vera products from the plant
* Warnings about the possible dangers associated with Aloe Vera
* Uses of Aloe Vera
* Aloe Vera for the Face
* Aloe Vera for the Hair and Scalp
* Aloe Vera for the Outer Body
* Aloe Vera for the Feet
* Aloe Vera for Medical Problems
* Aloe Vera for Babies
* Cooking with Aloe Vera
* Aloe Vera for Pets

About Aloe Vera the plant

Aloe vera (Aloe barbadensis), (sometimes known as Medicinal Aloe, Aloe arborescens Miller, Aloe ferox, Aloe latex, Aloe vulgari, Bitter Aloe, Burn Plant, Elephant's Gall, First-aid Plant, Jelly Leek, Lily of the desert, Lu-Hui, Medicine Plant, Miracle Plant, Plant of Immortality, Plant of Life, Socotrine Aloe and True Aloe), belongs to the Liliaceae family, which also includes tulips, onions and garlic. The name is thought to have come from the Arabic language and the term "alloeh," which means "shining bitter substance." Aloe vera is a perennial cactus-like plant whose prickly leaves contain both gel and latex and is classified as a succulent because it is composed mainly of water. The plants grow in clumps naturally in the wild. It is adapted to hot, arid regions that do not get much rainfall. Aloe will not bloom until about four years of age when it is fully mature, when it produces bright, tubular-shaped yellow or orange flowers on long, protruding stems, typically reaching a height of up to 3 feet when flowers are in bloom. The Aloe vera plant has a spread of up to 6 feet and is esteemed both for its beauty and for its medicinal properties, having been used medicinally and in beauty preparations for many millennia. Nefertiti and Cleopatra both used Aloe as it was considered to be the fountain of youth by the ancient Egyptians. They knew it as the 'Plant of Immortality', and used it as a burial gift to Pharaohs.

The plant’s thick, spiny leaves contain a thick sap or gel that is clear and similar to runny jelly in its consistency, while the latex is yellow and more solid. The viscous liquid from the Aloe vera leaf is used to make both Aloe vera juice and Aloe vera gel. This nourishing gel possesses wonderful soothing qualities unmatched by anything man-made and it is used to create salves, juices, creams and even pills.

Aloe vera is grown in most countries, but does best in warmer climates or indoors, although Aloe vera plants kept indoors are not likely to bloom at all. Occasionally these house plants may produce flowers if they receive a great deal of sunlight, but most will not. Aloe vera plants are not fragrant.

There are over 250 different species of Aloe plants; however, only five species are recognized as having nutritional and medicinal value. There are actually 15 poisonous types of Aloe vera plants. Aloe vera plants are not mature until they are 4 years old, and the Aloe vera should not be extracted until that time. It is now sold worldwide and has several homeopathic applications. While the science to verify the long-held beliefs about the efficacy of Aloe vera as an herbal remedy is conflicting, anecdotal evidence is strong.

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Benefits and healing properties

Aloe vera is hypo allergenic, making it perfect for sensitive skins. Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory, anti-tumour, anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties, being a concoction of antioxidants, antibiotics, cell growth stimulators. It has astringent, and pain/scar inhibitor properties. Aloe vera helps cleanse the digestive system, provide energy, hydrate and sooth damaged skin, and support the immune system. Aloe vera has many benefits when taken internally. It can be used to cure constipation, alleviate acne and make skin more supple. Aloe vera contains properties that are beneficial for the heart, and that help to destroy bacteria. In addition, according to the American Chronicle, Aloe vera improves circulation, heals internal tissue damage, helps to regulate blood sugar and helps to heal psoriasis. People using Aloe vera juice claim to have had relief from arthritis, ulcers, constipation, and bladder and kidney infections. Consuming the juice processed from the Aloe vera plant also gave relief to swollen joints and reduced insomnia. Amino acids in Aloe vera soothe and heal the skin. It is commonly known as an instant treatment for burns and sunburns.

Aloe vera is a powerhouse of nutrients. It contains high levels of minerals, 18 amino acids, A, B, C and E vitamins and enzymes, which contribute to its healing properties. As a topical supplement, the amino acids in Aloe vera can stimulate the circulatory and inflammatory processes to clear infection and fluid build-up.

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Nutrients in Aloe vera

Nutrients in Aloe Vera include the following:-
1 Vitamin A
2 Vitamin B1
3 Vitamin B2
4 Vitamin B3
5 Vitamin B6
6 Vitamin B12
7 Vitamin C
8 Vitamin E
9 Mucopolysaccharides
10 anthraquinones
11 minerals
12 amino acids
13 essential oils
14 enzymes
15 protein
16 calcium
17 zinc
18 magnesium
19 manganese
20 iron
21 Flavonoid :Rutin
22 Flavonoid: Quercetin
23 Flavonoid: Resveratrol
24 Phytosterol :Lophenol
25 Phytosterol :24-methyl-lophenol
26 Phytosterol :24-ethyl-lophenol
27 Phytosterol :Cycloartanol
28 Phytosterol :24-methylene-cycloartanol
29 Phytochemicals: Salicylic Acid
30 Phytochemicals: Lupeol
31 Phytochemicals: Phenol
32 Phytochemicals: Mannose
33 Phytochemicals: Aloin
34 Phytochemicals: Acemannan
35 Phytochemicals: Cinnamic

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Flavonoids Found in Aloe Vera Plants

Aloe is full of antioxidants and flavonoids, which may be beneficial for the body, skin and immune system.

RUTIN

Aloe vera contains the flavonoid rutin, which works against inflammation and viruses. When used internally, it can help eliminate illnesses and internal inflammation. When used on cuts, burns or other skin problems, it can prevent infections caused by viruses or bacteria.

QUERCETIN

Quercetin is another flavonoid found in Aloe. Quercetin may be useful for respiratory problems like coughing and asthma. It can also help in the blood stream to lower cholesterol, increase capillary resistance and expand coronary blood flow.

RESVERATROL

Resveratrol is a flavnoid that has many potential health benefits. It may help fight and prevent cancer, and possibly help users reach weight loss goals. Aloe vera contains some resveratrol, which when combined with rutin and quercetin, may improve heart health, cancer prevention and healing for a variety of injuries and internal problems.
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Phytochemicals Found in Aloe Vera Plants

Aloe vera is rich in phytochemicals, which occur naturally in plants and have beneficial effects on health. The gel in the Aloe leaves is used topically to help heal wounds and minor skin irritations such as frostbites, burns and sunburns, as well as skin conditions such as psoriasis and cold sores. People also extract Aloe vera juice to take orally for the treatment of a variety of conditions, including diabetes, gastro-duodenal ulcers, colitis, arthritis and immune-system deficiencies.

SALICYLIC ACID

Salicylic acid is an aspirin-like chemical with anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antibacterial properties. Its beneficial effects on the skin contribute to the popularity of Aloe vera in the cosmetic industry as a key ingredient in many skin-care products aimed at the treatment of corns, calluses, warts, acne and other conditions.

LUPEOL AND PHENOL

The phytochemicals lupeol and phenol are considered effective painkillers thanks to their analgesic properties. They are also known for their anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and anti-arthritic attributes.

MANNOSE

Mannose is a natural sugar that is considered a safe alternative treatment for bladder and urinary tract infections. Mannose is absorbed much more slowly into the body than any other sugar. It moves all the way to the kidneys, where it is filtered and sent to the bladder. There it attracts bacteria that otherwise would coat the lining of the bladder.

ALOIN

Aloin, also known as barbaloin, is the bitter, yellow sap of the Aloe plant and has strong purgative attributes. Because of this, all the processed Aloe products available on the market that contain aloin are usually designed as laxatives. Aloin is removed from other Aloe products.

ACEMANNAN AND CINNAMIC ACIDS

Acemannan and Cinnamic acids, present in Aloe juice, possess antiviral, antiparasitic and anti fungal properties. Acemannan, a polysaccharide, can also improve the metabolism of cells by regulating their function and nutriments, restoring and boosting the immune system.
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Phytosterols Found in Aloe Vera Plants

Scientific research at the Biochemical Research Laboratory, Morinaga Milk Industry Co., Ltd, Kanagawa, Japan, has shown that 5 phytosterols found in Aloe vera gel, known as lophenol, 24-methyl-lophenol, 24-ethyl-lophenol, cycloartanol, and 24-methylene-cycloartanol all have properties that produce an anti-hyperglycemic effect with diabetes type 2. This means that these phytosterols can reduce glucose (HbA1c) levels and can be effective in the long-term control and treatment of diabetes 2.
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Uses of Aloe Vera

Uses are many and varied and include both external and internal uses. Aloe vera juice and gel yield the same benefits, however the juice is mostly used for internal use.

Aloe vera Gel for external skin & hair uses :-

Aloe vera gel is thicker than liquid, but thinner than cream and is ideally used in topical application, as it is absorbed easily and quickly dries. The Aloe from the leaf is a clear gel, but is often dyed green in commercial products. It is sold in a jar or bottle from which it can either be squeezed out or pumped like soap. Aloe vera gel can be found in hundreds of skin products, including lotion and sun block. 1 Acne
2 As an astringent
3 Athletes Foot
4 Blisters
5 Bug bites
6 Corns
7 Calluses
8 Dandruff
9 Hair condition and growth
10 Minor burns
11 Moisturiser & skin protector (This herb is 90% water, which allows valuable minerals and nutrients to be absorbed by the skin).
12 Psoriasis
13 Scalp
14 Skin - improving the appearance of scars or blemishes
15 soothing irritated skin
16 Stomach calming
17 Stretch marks
18 Sun burn
19 Warts
20 Wounds
21 Wrinkles

External Air Treatment uses:-

Grown indoors the plant removes toxins such as formaldehyde from the air.

Aloe Vera Liquid and Capsules for internal uses:-

NB. The National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine states that there is not enough scientific evidence to support Aloe vera for any other uses besides topical application to burns or in the form of Aloe latex as a laxative (Aloe latex is the dried, green part of the Aloe leaf.) See warnings.

Aloe vera juice is derived from the green part of the leaf that surrounds the gel, and is ingested orally. When taken daily, Aloe vera juice provides digestive benefits. Drink 2 to 8 oz. Aloe vera juice every day to reap the benefits of the herb's natural healing properties. Some of the minerals found in Aloe vera juice include calcium, sodium, iron, potassium, chromium, magnesium, manganese, copper, and zinc. The juice is the liquid form of Aloe vera, and the texture is much less thick than the gel.

1 Asthma
2 Abdominal cramps
3 abrasions
4 Bloating
5 Blood glucose levels
6 Bursitis
7 Cancer
8 Circulation
9 Colds
10 Constipation
11 Detox
12 Diabetes
13 Dietary supplement
14 Epilepsy
15 Glaucoma
16 Heartburn
17 High cholesterol
18 Immune system
19 Indigestion
20 Infections
21 Inflammation
22 Insomnia
23 internal tissue damage
24 Irritable bowel syndrome
25 Irregular bowel clearance
26 Rashes
27 Swelling in joints
28 Kidney and Bladder Problems
29 Laxative
30 Leaky Gut Syndrome
31 Leg Cramps
32 Osteoarthritis
33 Rheumatoid arthritis
34 Ulcers
35 Urinary tract infections
36 Weight Loss
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Warnings about the possible dangers associated with Aloe Vera

Warning: Side effects
Aloe vera has little or no side effects in most users, but while rare, it is possible to experience side effects with Aloe vera, mostly with Aloe vera taken internally. A dose of two to eight ounces of Aloe vera juice is recommended per day. Too much consumption of the juice can cause possible side effects include nausea, dermatitis, strangely coloured urine, allergic reactions and liver dysfunction, electrolyte loss, delaying the healing process, c hanging the colour of urine to a pink colour, fluid imbalance and intestinal cramps and miscarriage.

Some varieties of Aloe plants are not for internal consumption. The sap of the Aloe vera plant is commonly used in lotions and in its natural state to treat burns on the skin. Although useful for external applications, the sap should never be ingested, because it is a poisonous substance. Although poisonous, the sap has low toxicity and should not cause any lasting problems, according to the North Carolina University horticultural department. In most cases, symptoms last only a few minutes. For safety reasons, you should only make Aloe vera juice, also known as Aloe vera water, from the gel. Do not eat Aloe vera latex. While Aloe vera has been widely used for its soothing and clearing properties, some individuals may experience serious side effects from prolonged use. As with any supplement, medical advice is prudent to determine Aloe vera is safe to use with other treatments, so talk to your doctor about the correct dose for you to minimize chances of these side effects. Stop drinking Aloe vera juice or taking the capsules if you experience any strange reactions. (Ref: National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM).)

Warning: Allergies
Liliaceae family also includes tulips, onions and garlic. Don't drink Aloe vera juice if you are allergic to garlic or onions. People with known sensitivities or allergies to these plants may also be allergic to Aloe. They should avoid Aloe vera because it could trigger their allergic reactions. Topical formulations of Aloe vera are not absorbed systemically, but it can be absorbed in the body through excessive application on wounds. According to the Aloe Vera Guide, side effects are minor and can be resolved by stopping administration. Serious symptoms that require medical attention include allergic reactions (e.g., itching, rash or swelling), cramping, delayed wound healing, pink-coloured urine, dehydration and blurred vision.
Warning: Cardiovascular and kidney
Aloe vera acts as a diuretic and it can worsen cardiovascular and kidney problems. Overuse of Aloe vera juice can cause severe diarrhoea or kidney problems. Care should be taken, especially if you are already using a diuretic
Warning: Diabetes
There are conventional treatments for diabetes, but many people opt for alternative natural medications such as Aloe vera juice. Whilst you can manage diabetes with Aloe vera juice, you must monitor blood sugar levels very carefully. Aloe can lower blood sugar, and if you have diabetes and take a medication also used to lower blood sugar, it can become too low.
Warning: Hives (urticaria) or Skin Rashes
Topical applications of Aloe vera can cause hives or skin rashes in allergic individuals. However, these symptoms disappear once exposure to the plant is discontinued.
Warning: Medications and Aloe Vera
Aloe vera may interact with steroids, diuretics and prescription drugs and could worsen your condition.

There are certain conditions that exacerbate the side effects of Aloe vera juice. People who have Crohn's disease, other intestinal problems, who are menstruating, have appendicitis or colitis should speak to a doctor before taking Aloe vera internally, as Aloe vera can cause the medications associated with some of these conditions to be ineffective.

Since Aloe vera is a strong laxative, it can counteract the effects of medications and should be added as a supplement under a doctor's supervision.

Warning: : Intestinal conditions like Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis or obstruction
Do not take Aloe if you have an intestinal condition such as Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, or obstruction-- Aloe latex is a bowel irritant and can aggravate these conditions. High doses of Aloe latex have been linked to kidney failure and other serious conditions. Do not take Digoxin (Lanoxin) simultaneously with Aloe Vera Juice.
Warning: : Radiation therapy
Aloe vera gel cannot be used for burn prevention in radiation therapy.
Warning: : Surgery
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine cites that application of Aloe vera can slow down the healing of deep surgical wounds. Topical applications may contain other ingredients such as lidocaine, alcohol or moisturizers and these formulations may cause irritation.
PLEASE – ref to http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-607-ALOE.aspx?activeIngredientId=607&activeIngredientName=ALOE for more information before taking Aloe vera by mouth.
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Aloe Vera for the Face

Aloe vera and Acne.

Use Aloe vera to treat acne problems by reducing and tightening pore size. It has healing effects which have been supported by research and medical literature.

As an Astringent.

Used as an astringent Aloe vera has the ability to instantly freshen skin which alleviates a ruddy, red complexion. Leave the Aloe juice on throughout the day or overnight. Have the Aloe juice replace your usual astringent or toner and use the same products as you would after using the astringent.

How to Treat Facial Wrinkles with Aloe Vera

Apply Aloe vera gel to the face making sure to smear plenty of Aloe on any wrinkles, scars or blemishes and allow to penetrate for thirty minutes. This will give ample time for the Aloe to go to work on hydrating and nourishing your skin and putting back into your skin what the harsh elements have taken away.
Rinse your face with cool water gently but thoroughly until all traces of Aloe vera gel are removed. Pat dry with a clean paper towel. Your skin should feel firm and your pores should look closed.
Repeat Steps 1 & 2 at least once a week to plump wrinkles, fade scars, age spots and blemishes and rejuvenate your skin.

How to make a cleansing, hydrating Aloe Vera Lotion

Aloe vera is 90% water, which allows valuable minerals and nutrients to be absorbed by the skin. Most store-bought lotions contain harmful additives and preservatives that extend shelf life but can cause more damage than good to skin. This recipe can teach you to make Aloe vera lotion easily and inexpensively at home in about 45 minutes.
Melt 4 tbsp. sweet almond oil with 1 tbsp. of beeswax in a small glass pan. Heat 1 tsp. of strong calendula tea and 2 tbsp. of Aloe vera gel in a separate small glass pan.
Stir 1/4 tsp. of borax into the tea and Aloe vera mixture until it dissolves completely. Remove both pans from heat, and pour the Aloe vera mixture into the pan containing the almond oil and beeswax.
Beat with a wire whisk until the mixture becomes smooth and thick. Add 50,000 IU of vitamin A by piercing the capsules and pouring the contents into the Aloe vera lotion. Mix in 5 to 10 drops sandalwood essential oil, and blend again with the wire whisk.
Transfer the Aloe vera lotion to a glass jar. Label with the contents and date. Refrigeration is not required if used within 30 days. If not used within this time period, store in the refrigerator for an additional 30 days before discarding.
Apply 2 tsp. of the Aloe vera lotion per application. This recipe yields about 12 applications and should be used once daily to cleanse and hydrate normal to dry skin.

How to Use Aloe Vera on Your Lips

The moisturizing and healing properties of Aloe vera can benefit the skin on your lips as well.
Mix an overnight therapeutic treatment for your lips. Combine Aloe vera gel, petroleum jelly and coconut oil in a microwaveable glass bowl. Warm the ingredients in a microwave, stir them well and allow the mixture to thoroughly cool. Apply to your lips at bedtime. The next morning, your lips will be smooth and hydrated.
Apply a lip balm containing Aloe vera and sunscreen when going outdoors. Unlike Aloe vera gel that is absorbed by the skin, lip balm is formulated to remain on the lips to provide protection. Check your lip balm to ensure that sunscreen is listed as an ingredient.

How to treat under eye wrinkles and dark circles with Aloe Vera Gel

Under eye wrinkles and dark circles can creep up on you and leave you feeling that you want to hide your face from the world. You may wonder what you can do to make your eye look healthy and more youthful.
Before apply Aloe vera gel to your under eye make sure your face is clean first. Cleanse your face with whatever facial cleanser you use and pat your face dry. The next step is to apply your Aloe vera gel to your delicate under eye area. You will want to use your middle or pinky finger and gently tap the gel onto your under eye skin. Since your skin under your eye is very thin you can not rub it in. Rubbing the skin can actually increase the wrinkles. Make sure that when you apply the gel that you do not get any into the eyes because it will cause burning and irritation. Once you are done allow the gel to dry naturally under the eye. Aloe Vera Gel contains ingredients such as Vitamin C, A and E. Since all of those things can be found in under eye products, that makes the gel a wonderful choice to treat under eye circles and wrinkles.

How to Reduce Pore Size with Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is effective for reducing the size of pores on your face when you mix it with other ingredients as a facial, or apply only the juice directly to your skin.
Purchase an Aloe vera plant or 99.9% pure Aloe vera gel. Many health and retail stores sell them. Bottled Aloe vera juice is also available, but sometimes it is mixed with other ingredients and does not have a high concentration of Aloe vera. Buying the actual plant ensures that you get pure unmixed Aloe to use.
Wash your face thoroughly. You want to remove dirt and debris from your pores before applying Aloe vera. Use your usual face cleanser or a cleanser formulated for reducing pores. Use a towel to gently pat your face dry after washing.
Extract the gel from the plant. Wash the plant leaves in warm water to remove any surface residue. Dry the leaves with a dry cloth. Using a sharp knife, start from the top of one leaf and cut down the middle until it splits open.
Apply the gel to your face. Squeeze a small amount of gel from the cut Aloe leaf onto your fingertips. Gently rub the gel onto your skin. Apply gel until your entire face is lightly covered. Leave gel on for a few minutes so your pores absorb it. Rinse with warm water, pat your face dry with a towel and apply moisturizer afterward.

Overnight Aloe Vera Mask

Remove the peel from one cucumber and chop the cucumber roughly. Combine the cucumber, 50 grams of Aloe vera gel and 50 ml (a little more than 1.5 ounces) of water in a blender. Mix until the ingredients are smooth and creamy.
Apply the mixture. Wash your face with your usual cleanser and pat dry. Smooth the Aloe vera cream mixture over your face. Do not rinse it off. Keep the cream on your face overnight. Sleep on a pillowcase that you don't mind ruining, just in case the mixture causes staining.
Rinse the cream off of your face in the morning. Wash your face and apply a toner to remove any leftover residue. Let the toner dry and apply a moisturizer as the last step

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Aloe Vera for the Hair and Scalp

Using Aloe vera shampoo is a luxurious way to nurture damaged, dry or lifeless hair, and it's quite easy to make at home with only a few simple ingredients. All hair types respond well to Aloe vera, though it works best on dry hair. Home Remedy to treat dandruff with Aloe vera If you suffer from dandruff, this is a good way to treat it. It can be embarrassing when you have flakes all over your hair and even on your shoulders. The dry and itching sensation on your scalp can be torture. If you want relief, this easy remedy is just what you need.
1 Cut an arm off of an Aloe vera plant and rinse it with warm water.
2 Pat dry and peel the skin off with the paring knife. Once peeled cut the Aloe vera into medium sized pieces.
3 Get all the pieces and as much of the gel into the blender or chopper and blend or chop until the Aloe looks very foamy.
4 Next, pour the foamy Aloe into a clean container.
5 Massage it into your scalp well.
6 Leave the Aloe on your scalp for about 30 minutes to an hour, and then shampoo your hair as usual. Do this 3 or 4 times a week and it should keep your dandruff in check.
7 Cover the left over Aloe and refrigerate. It keeps for about a week.

How Does Aloe Vera Promote Hair Growth?

Hair growth is encouraged by Aloe Vera because it reduces Sebum. Sebum is a naturally produced oily substance. It is secreted by the hair glands, and when produced in normal amounts, simply helps the scalp to remain moisturized. When produced in excess amounts, however, sebum accumulates on the scalp, mixes with dirt and forms a crust that can damage existing hair follicles and prevent new hair follicles from growing. Aloe vera has antibacterial properties, which help to reduce the excess sebum and allow the scalp to breathe and the follicles to renew themselves.
Aloe vera activates new hair growth and growth of already existing hair follicles by increasing the blood circulation to the follicle root. It also helps to cleanse the pores (especially good if excess sebum is the cause of poor hair growth) and bring the pH of the scalp into balance.
Putting a lot of heat on the hair can be unhealthy if not combated by healthy treatment regimens. Putting Aloe vera on your scalp can give the scalp relief from such harsh things as heat, or curling irons and blow-dryers.
Aloe vera provides moisture, minerals and vitamins to the scalp and hair follicles. It contains over 20 minerals and vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, B12, C and E. Hair follicles like vitamins, so having a plentiful supply is a good thing for both hair quality and hair growth.

How to Naturally Repair Damaged Hair with Aloe Vera

1 Aloe vera is also good for repairing damaged hair, due to its humectant properties and to enzymes which work to soothe the hair shaft. Aloe vera also contains amino acids, essential oils and vitamins C and E.
2 Purchase Aloe vera gel. Choose a product with a high percentage of Aloe vera, preferably organic. If you have an Aloe plant at home, cut several leaves off and squeeze or scrape the gel out and into an airtight container. Store the Aloe vera in the refrigerator.
3 Wash your hair as usual and towel dry. Condition hair with a mixture of Aloe vera and olive oil and allow it to sink into your hair for 15-20 minutes. Then, rinse it out and towel-dry your hair again.
4 Work 1 tablespoon of Aloe vera gel through your hair from the roots to the ends. If your hair is significantly damaged, rub in a few drops of oil or your favourite moisturizer before applying the Aloe vera. Allow it to completely penetrate.
5 Part your hair and rub the Aloe vera into your scalp to soothe it and add moisture. Healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp, so try to cover as much of the scalp as possible. Add a drop of essential oil such as lavender or rosemary if desired. Lavender has regenerative properties and rosemary is known for stimulating hair growth and repair; they both have a pleasant aroma, as well.
6 Make your own hair elixir by combining one cup of distilled water with 1 tablespoon of Aloe vera into a spray bottle. Shake and spray onto hair as needed. This treatment can be used daily and also serves as a way to refresh your hair in between washes.

Make a Moisturizing Aloe Vera Shampoo

1 Add 1 tablespoon of Aloe vera gel to your shampoo and conditioner to boost the moisture quotient of the products.
2 Rub a dime-sized amount of Aloe vera gel between your palms and smooth over hair after styling to add shine without the use of silicones.
3 Apply a drop of Aloe vera gel to dry ends. This will moisturize and seal the ends, preventing damage that fragile, relaxed hair is prone to.
4 Make a deep conditioning treatment using equal parts olive oil and Aloe vera gel. Apply to hair, comb through with wide-tooth comb, and let sit for up to 30 minutes before washing out.
5 Mix equal parts Aloe vera and glycerine to make an after shampoo leave-in product that will not weigh your hair down or leave it greasy.
6 Relaxed hair often needs special treatment due to its fragile condition. Products especially formulated for relaxed hair can be expensive, but there is no need to spend a lot of money to keep your relaxed hair looking great. Aloe vera gel is an all-natural, gentle product women with relaxed hair turn to for styling and treatment purposes.

Another way to make Aloe Vera Shampoo

Make the moisturizing action of this homemade shampoo even stronger by using essential oils that complement your hair type. Simply keep a small bottle in the shower containing enough shampoo for about a week, and store the rest in the refrigerator. Combine Aloe vera gel, liquid castile soap and liquid vegetable glycerine in a small mixing bowl. Stir well and add the essential oils, if desired.
Transfer the Aloe vera shampoo into a small squeeze bottle. Label with the contents and store in the refrigerator until ready to use, or leave the bottle in the shower if you'll be using within one week.
Use your Aloe vera shampoo by squeezing a dime-sized amount into the palm of your hand and massaging into the hair, beginning at the scalp and working your way down to the ends. The shampoo will not produce many suds, but it cleans gently and naturally.

Hair Loss Prevention

Aloe vera can help prevent hair loss, according to NaturalNews.com. It's as simple as cutting open a leaf of the plant, squeezing out its insides and rubbing the substance onto sections of the scalp.

De-tangle

Most people who prefer to leave their hair natural and un-permed have to deal with hard-to-get-out tangles while washing or before styling. When hair is tangled and you pull, tug or break strands to get tangles out, it leaves the hair unhealthy and uneven. Using Aloe vera on wet hair can help de-tangle it, making it easier to manage and care for.

Scalp Treatment

Massage a generous amount of Aloe vera gel into scalp every night before bed. Aloe vera is especially beneficial and soothing to dry, flaky, sensitive scalps. Use Aloe vera shampoo if you have eczema on your scalp or around your hairline. Hairsprays and other hair products can trigger and exacerbate eczema in these areas. Regular use of Aloe vera shampoo can clear and prevent outbreaks. Keep using Aloe to treat eczema even after the affected area appears healed to prevent the rash from returning. When topically applied, Aloe vera has no side effects except possible allergic reactions.

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Aloe Vera for the Outer Body

How to Use the Aloe Vera as a Pain and Itch Reliever

In order to use the Aloe vera leaf as an external pain reliever, just break off a small section of a leaf. The sap that oozes out of the broken edge is thick and clear. Rub the sap over the affected area of skin. To treat very bad sunburn, break off a large piece of an Aloe vera leaf and rub it all over the affected area. The juice from the leaf acts as a pain reliever and eases the heat from the sunburn. You can use a liberal amount of Aloe sap as needed. The gel is very cool and soothing and that helps numb the burning associated with sunburns, scrapes, scratches, abrasions and minor burns. You can use the gels and lotions liberally and as often as needed. Aloe vera plant sap also usually helps relieve the itching associated with chiggers, mosquito bites, and even poison ivy. However, Aloe sap should not be used to make poison ivy clear up as it will not work.

How to Use Aloe Vera to Treat Eczema

Eczema is a skin rash that is characterized by dry, itchy skin that is often red, flaky and blistering, depending on the severity of the condition. You can prevent eczema flare-ups with Aloe vera. See a dermatologist to diagnose your eczema. It's important to rule out other skin conditions like a fungal infection so you can find the right treatment. Switch to moisturizing soap and body wash with Aloe vera as an ingredient. Ordinary soaps add to skin dryness and can exacerbate eczema. Apply Aloe vera gel to soothe irritation. Aloe vera gel can either be harvested directly from the plant or bought in a commercial preparation. Aloe vera is not toxic and doesn't sting when applied. You can also try Aloe propolis cream to treat eczema. Propolis is a waxy substance with natural antibiotic qualities from bees. When combined with Aloe vera and other ingredients in a moisturizer, anecdotal evidence indicates it may improve eczema symptoms. You could mix Manuka Honey with Aloe Vera instead.

Rashes

Rashes can occur from any number of things, including rubbing against poisonous plants. Soak cotton balls in Aloe vera gel. Apply cotton balls directly to affected areas. You can also try rubbing fresh Aloe vera pulp on the rash. Repeat at least twice daily until rash disappears, which should be in one to three days.

How to Treat Sunburn with Aloe Vera

Cut a few plump leaves from your Aloe Vera plant. Take your knife and cut up the length of the sides of the leaves. Try not to waste all the gooey Aloe Vera gel that will be oozing out. Apply the gel very gently to your sunburn, being extra careful not to press or scrape the burn. It's up to you whether or not you'd like to cover your burn; however, if possible don't cover burns once they have been treated with Aloe. Allow the Aloe and fresh air do their job. Refrain from sun exposure until the entire burn has recovered from being "cooked." Re-apply Aloe Vera gel every few hours until the heat from the burn has completely gone.

How to Use Aloe on mild Burns and Sunburn

Aloe is an affordable and extremely effective remedy to use on all types of burns, not just sunburns. Also, Aloe doesn't contain oils or other substances that can clog pores and irritate burns. Aloe is an antiseptic and antibiotic, and increases oxygenation of the skin. Buy Aloe lotion from a health food store or drug store. The inside of the Aloe plant is not, contrary to popular belief, bright green. The bright green gels have been artificially coloured. If you buy it, ensure that the gel you buy for your sunburn is either entirely composed of Aloe vera gel or is substantially composed of Aloe vera gel. Some lotions have a small amount of Aloe in them, but contain other ingredients that are not suitable for sunburn. Apply liberally and put gauze or a loose cloth over the area to protect the burn and to prevent the gel from being rubbed off. If you have a pair of loose, long pyjamas, those may be your best bet. Include the peel if you are using Aloe from a plant. If you are using it from a bottle, you are going to apply only the gel, but if you have cut a leaf from an Aloe plant split it open and place it on the burn, gel side down and the hard, tough skin on the outside. Hold in place with a bandana or gauze. Re-apply the Aloe vera gel at least twice a day. If you have the time and energy, apply more frequently. The dry, sunburned skin will soak up the Aloe vera, and you can't apply too much. Use your Aloe gel on other parts of your body, as well. If one part of you burned, then the rest is probably dry and sun-exposed as well, and can use a liberal application of this beneficial and natural gel.

How to Use Aloe Vera to Treat Burns

Aloe vera plants have been used for centuries to treat burns holistically. While the science to verify the long-held beliefs about the efficacy of Aloe vera as an herbal remedy is conflicting, anecdotal evidence is strong. The clear sap inside the leaves of the plant has pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties that soothe and heal burn injuries. Cool a burn by running it under cool water. It's important to take the heat out of the burn so that no further damage is done. Assess the degree of the burn. First-degree burns are red and swollen but superficial, while second-degree burns are deeper and feature blisters. First- and second-degree burns can be treated at home, but third-degree burns are very severe and require immediate medical attention. Break off a leaf from an Aloe vera plant and cut it lengthwise. Choose a plump leaf from the outer edge of the plant because Aloe plants grow from the inside out. Scoop out the inside of the Aloe leaf, including the clear sap and the pulp, with a spoon. Mash the Aloe leaf contents into a paste. Apply Aloe vera gel paste to the burn when it has cooled down sufficiently. Aloe vera gel has analgesic properties that can help with the pain of the burn, and the anti-inflammatory properties can prevent swelling from causing additional pain and blood restriction. Continue to apply Aloe vera gel until the burn heals. Use Aloe vera gel to help diminish burn scars. Aloe vera gel promotes cell regeneration and can help skin grow back healthy.

Basic Aloe Sunburn Healing Experiment

One of Aloe Vera’s properties is the ability to heal sunburn. The next time you get sunburn on a large area of your skin (e.g., your whole back), you can do an experiment to demonstrate this property. Simply apply Aloe vera to half of your back, leaving the other half untreated. Continue to reapply the Aloe vera often, and compare the healing of the two sides of your back. If you'd like to make this experiment even more accurate, divide your back into four sections - top right, top left, bottom right, and bottom left - and apply Aloe only to the top right and bottom left sections of your back. This will show more definitively the degree to which Aloe vera can help heal sunburns.
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Aloe Vera for the Feet

Athletes Foot

Athlete's foot is when the skin becomes itchy, cracked and flaky from a fungus. It occurs when the feet are constantly in warm, moist environments, such as public swimming pools, locker rooms and sweaty gym sneakers. It is best to use fresh Aloe vera pulp to treat these conditions; if not, use pure Aloe vera gel. Also try soaking feet in a small basin with Aloe vera gel or fresh pulp for additional relief.

Blisters

Blisters generally occur from friction between the skin and shoes. Soak cotton balls in Aloe vera gel. Apply cotton balls to affected areas. Repeat twice daily or as needed for at least one week. Soak a cotton ball in Aloe vera gel. Apply cotton ball to affected area. Allow to soak in. Cover cotton ball with bandage or band aid if you wish for added relief. Repeat two to three times daily until blister disappears; this should be in one to three days.
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Aloe Vera for Medical Problems

Drinking Aloe vera juice helps regulate blood sugar levels.

Manage diabetes with Aloe vera juice. While there are conventional treatments for diabetes, many people opt for alternative natural medications such as Aloe vera juice. However, before you start drinking Aloe vera, ensure that you seek medical advice to avoid likely side effects, advises the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). NCCAM, people with diabetes who use glucose-lowering medication should be cautious if simultaneously taking Aloe orally because some studies suggest Aloe may lower blood glucose levels. Do not take Aloe if you have an intestinal condition such as Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, or obstruction-- Aloe latex is a bowel irritant and can aggravate these conditions. High doses of Aloe latex have been linked to kidney failure and other serious conditions. Do not take Digoxin (Lanoxin) simultaneously with Aloe Vera Juice. If you have diabetes, monitor blood sugar levels if taking Aloe. Aloe can lower blood sugar, and if you have diabetes and take a medication also used to lower blood sugar, it can become too low. Scientific research at the Biochemical Research Laboratory, Morinaga Milk Industry Co., Ltd, Kanagawa, Japan, has shown that 5 phytosterols found in Aloe vera gel, known as lophenol, 24-methyl-lophenol, 24-ethyl-lophenol, cycloartanol, and 24-methylene-cycloartanol all have properties that produce an anti-hyperglycemic effect with diabetes type 2. This means that these phytosterols can reduce glucose (HbA1c) levels and can be effective in the long-term control and treatment of diabetes 2.

How to Use Aloe Vera to Treat Candida

Candida or thrush is a fungal infection (mycosis); a type of fungus that causes candidiasis infections in a variety of places on the body. Candidiasis infections are most commonly located orally (thrush), vaginally (yeast infections) and gastro-intestinally. Medical professionals typically treat these infections with anti-fungal drugs administered both topically and orally. However, Aloe vera has natural anti-fungal properties and can help clear up candidiasis and prevent recurrences. Identify your symptoms. Common symptoms of external Candida infections include itching, burning. See a doctor to diagnose your condition. Some Candida infections are confused with bacterial infections that require antibiotic treatment. Apply Aloe vera gel to external Candida infections, such as diaper rash or male genital yeast infections. Aloe vera gel is generally safe when applied topically. Drink Aloe vera juice daily to manage Candida colonies in the body naturally. Overgrowth of candida in the gastro-intestinal tract can cause heartburn, diarrhoea and constipation. Drinking 1 to 3 oz. of Aloe vera juice can help keep Candida in check. Rinse your mouth with Aloe vera concentrate daily to treat oral thrush. The Aloe vera counteracts the infection in the mouth sores. Spit out the rinse to expel the infectious deposits rather than introducing them to the digestive tract.

Use Aloe Vera to Treat Intestinal Problems

Aloe vera has long been heralded for its healing properties externally, but you may not be aware that Aloe vera can also heal your body from the inside. Aloe vera has many ingredients that neutralize toxins, clean the colon, stimulate cell regeneration, support your immune system and boost energy levels. In 1997, University of San Antonio researcher Jeremiah Herlihy conducted a study to observe any negative effects of drinking Aloe vera juice everyday. The animals that were tested did not show any negative effects. On the contrary, the consumption of Aloe vera juice showed a reduction in leukemia, heart disease, and kidney disease.

Dietary supplement

Take Aloe vera juice orally as a dietary supplement. In addition to its medicinal properties, Aloe vera juice is used as a food supplement because it has some useful nutrient content. The Food and Drug Administration also approved it as one of the recommended natural food flavouring substances, according to a report from the National Institutes of Health.

Fight cancer with Aloe juice.

According to the International Journal of Toxicology, some Aloe juice has anti-carcinogenic properties that inhibit the growth of tumours. In addition, notes the Journal, some studies have shown that Aloe-emodin has anti-carcinogenic properties. Drinking Aloe vera is therefore helpful in the management of cancer.

How to Make an Aloe Vera Gel Treatment for Haemorrhoids

This natural Aloe Vera Gel treatment treats Haemorrhoids naturally. Haemorrhoids are rarely severe enough that removal is necessary, but they are a hassle to deal with, especially the discomfort that they cause. Aloe vera not only helps to relieve the discomfort and itching, it also helps to reduce the inflammation that causes haemorrhoids. The essential oils also work to reduce the inflammation and help treat your haemorrhoids. Before using the Aloe vera gel, store it in the fridge overnight, or store it in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes. The coldness will help the haemorrhoids inflammation. Select the essential oil you would like to use. There are a few essential oils that can be used in this treatment. The three essential oils that will work the best to treat haemorrhoids include lavender essential oil, frankincense essential oil and cypress essential oil. Place 1 Teaspoon of Aloe vera gel directly onto a cotton ball or cotton pad (I suggest using a cotton pad) then gently spread it with your fingertip. Drop 1 drop of the essential oil you chose over the Aloe vera gel, and then gently apply the treatment directly to the haemorrhoids.

Constipation

Aloe Vera juice has powerful laxative properties. You can alleviate constipation by taking Aloe Vero Juice orally. Aloe vera juice is made of a yellow liquid (latex), a potent natural laxative, which is extracted from the herb’s leaves. Its powerful laxative properties are beneficial in the treatment of constipation. Constipation can be a painful and chronic gastrointestinal problem. While there are several ways to treat constipation, Aloe vera is an all-natural remedy that is believed to be extremely beneficial. Aloe vera is a stimulant laxative that works quickly to soften stools and return normal bowel function. Mix pure Aloe vera gel directly from the plant with fruit juice to treat constipation. The raw gel is more concentrated than most commercially available Aloe vera juices, so only use about 2 tbsp. at a time. Use Aloe vera in the dried latex capsules to soften stools. Aloe vera capsules are available at most health food stores and come in different quantities. Follow the manufacturer's dosage recommendations. Drink Aloe vera juice regularly if you have chronic constipation. Chronic gastrointestinal disorders are often caused by a candida fungal infection of the digestive tract. Aloe vera has anti fungal properties that work to stymie candida and keep the digestive tract moving smoothly, and clean the colon of faecal matter and harmful toxins. Aloe also helps restore the good bacteria in your colon. Add more fibre to your diet to treat constipation and prevent recurrent episodes. You can get more fibre by changing the way you eat or adding fibre supplements to your diet. Repeat Aloe vera detoxification periodically to keep your immune system strong and your body free of toxins. Aloe vera is generally safe to use whenever you feel the need to detoxify.

Cleaning the colon

Aloe vera is commonly used by many people with irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, and other intestinal disorders, such as diarrhoea and constipation. The main way Aloe vera does this is by cleaning the colon. After we eat food, the muscles of the digestive tract contract and relax to push the food to the stomach. Once the food is broken down by the gastric juices, the muscles continue to move the food through the intestines and finally out the rectum. Sometimes the muscles contract too strongly, too quickly or last too long. This leads to a host of conditions--flatulence, bloating, acid reflex, constipation, diarrhoea and abdominal cramps. Aloe vera cleans the digestive tract by removing toxins and impurities. It does this by bringing about bowel movements. The soothing qualities of Aloe vera help relax the muscle lining of the intestines. Aloe vera leaves contain bitter yellow liquids and these liquids contain compounds called anthraquinones, which are substances that clean or purge. The herb also neutralizes some of these toxins, which are then expelled with the faecal mater. Aloe vera also has anti fungal and antibacterial properties. These help kill some of the harmful bacteria or fungi in the colon. Aloe vera also contains many vitamins and minerals, and these nutrients are absorbed by the colon. This herb is gentle and has no side effects. Aloe vera is also thought to stimulate the immune system to fight disease, even cancer.

Detox

Consult your doctor before beginning a detoxification regimen. You should be in good health. Start your detoxification with a small dose of Aloe vera juice. Starting slow will allow you to determine if you are vulnerable to any side effects without feeling the full brunt of those side effects. The recommended starting dosage for most juices is 25 ml. once or twice a day. Expect frequent trips to the bathroom. The colon is one of the main collectors of toxins in the body, and Aloe has a laxative effect that loosens the toxin build-up and flushes it though your system.

Irritable Bowl Syndrome (IBS)

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal condition that is characterized by pain, diarrhoea and constipation. For IBS sufferers who experience frequent constipation symptoms, Aloe vera can be an effective treatment. See a gastroenterology specialist to diagnose your irritable bowel syndrome. This condition is often misdiagnosed because there is no specific lab test to identify it. A specialist can rule out other potentially dangerous conditions, such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease, that have some of the same symptoms as IBS. Discuss treatment options with your doctor. Antispasmodic drugs are often prescribed to treat abdominal pain caused by colon spasms (cramps). Additional drugs, including anti-depressants, are also used to treat select cases of IBS

Aloe Vera for Urinary Tract Infections

According to the National Kidney Foundation, every year, urinary tract infections account for nearly 10 million doctor visits. Urinary tract infections are experienced by women more than men - one in five women will have at least one urinary tract infection in her lifetime. Urinary tract infections (UTI) are primarily due to bacteria overload located along or within the urinary tract. UTI victims often experience swelling or pain in the urethra (urethritis), bladder (cystitis) and the kidney (pyelonephritis) areas. UTI sufferers experience a burning sensation along with an urge to urinate frequently, but once in the restroom negligible amounts of urine are released. An important ingredient in Aloe vera is mucopolysaccharides, which have anti-inflammatory, anti-tumour and anti-viral properties. Aloe vera also packs a host of vitamins and amino acids. The healing components of Aloe have been known to kill bacteria. Taking Aloe vera for your UTI can help alleviate the burning sensation you may have when urinating. In addition, it will help eliminate the E. coli and other bacteria found within your urinary tract. For Indigestion, Heartburn, Joint swelling leg cramps, kidney and bladder problems, insomnia According to the Web site Herbwisdom.com, Aloe vera juice (when ingested) heals ulcers and internal tissue damage, soothes indigestion, reduces swelling in joints (such as in arthritis) and calms heartburn. The Web site also says some people have claimed Aloe vera has helped reduce leg cramps, kidney and bladder problems, insomnia and other issues. All that is required for most people is two to four ounces per day.

Leaky Gut Syndrome

Leaky Gut Syndrome often goes undiagnosed. It can be associated with a variety of other disorders, such as allergies, Crohn's disease and arthritis. The syndrome can cause uncomfortable symptoms and can even lead to malnutrition. When the intestines become inflamed, the cells lining the intestine might become weak and allow toxins to leak into the bloodstream. Basically, your gut wall becomes permeable. This is Leaky Gut Syndrome. According to the Environment Illness Resource, Leaky Gut Syndrome can develop from other conditions such as Crohn's disease, arthritis, digestive problems, chronic fatigue, celiac disease or allergies. It can result from too much alcohol or caffeine, as well as too much stress. It is a chronic disease that can lead to malnutrition and infection if left untreated. Symptoms include abdominal pain, chronic joint pain, bloating, hair loss, brittle nails, anxiety, fatigue, constant hunger pains, poor immunity, skin rashes, confusion and mood swings. For patients with Leaky Gut Syndrome, Aloe Vera can help soothe the lining of the stomach and intestines. It may be a beneficial supplement for those undergoing medical treatments as it may help reduce nausea and increase energy. Eating a healthy diet with Aloe vera supplements might help a leaky gut heal over time.

Aloe vera for weight Loss

Aloe vera juice/gel can even be used as a weight loss tool, as it stimulates the metabolic rate in the liver cells which helps burn energy. This is excellent news for people suffering from obesity. Aloe vera has a high content of collagen protein. According to dictionary.com, plant collagen protein is the tissue rich in molecules that supply essential amino acids to the plant. Plant collagen protein requires extra energy for the body to convert into protein. When it is consumed daily, the body produces extra energy, raising the metabolism level. Aloe vera juice also reduces the time that food is spent in the intestines, which gives the body less time to absorb food energy into the body. This eliminates some calories and carbohydrates.

Aloe vera juice for the colon

Aloe vera juice is highly beneficial for the stomach. It acts as a tonic for the digestive system and flushes out waste matter from the body. It is a superior colon cleanser. It soothes indigestion and heartburn.

How to Use Aloe Vera to Treat Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is a potentially debilitating chronic illness that is characterized by joint pain and inflammation. Sufferers often lose much of their mobility and often become disabled. While there is not yet a cure for rheumatoid arthritis, there are medications, holistic remedies and other ways to treat the condition and reduce the symptoms. See a rheumatologist for a definitive diagnosis. Doctors use several blood tests to diagnose rheumatoid arthritis. Apply Aloe vera gel topically to swollen and painful joints. Aloe vera gel can provide immediate joint mobility and some pain relief for some because of its anti-inflammatory properties. Treat rheumatoid arthritis naturally with Aloe vera latex capsules. Generally taken with a full glass of water 2 to 3 times a day, Aloe vera has natural anti-inflammatory properties that can also help with joint swelling from the inside. Use Aloe vera juice to coat the stomach and heal the gastric lining. Taking large quantities of NSAIDs over time can cause problems throughout the gastrointestinal tract. By drinking Aloe vera juice regularly, you can help prevent these side effects, while receiving the anti-inflammatory benefits as well. Modify your diet to help treat rheumatoid arthritis. Most suffers have food allergies to wheat, corn, most dairy products, beef, cruciferous vegetables and a variety of other foods that tax the immune system. Avoiding these food and eating whole grains, vegetables, fruits and nuts helps by strengthening your immune system.
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Aloe Vera for Babies

Aloe vera is a natural supplement that can be used on newborns after consulting your physician. Although it is natural, your infant may still have allergic reactions to natural substances, so take care. Rub pure Aloe vera gel on your infant's rashes.

Aloe vera soothes irritated skin. Infants and babies are prone to skin rashes due to diapers, exposure to detergents and sensitive skin reactions. Aloe vera gel feels cool when applied to skin, and helps relieve skin irritation. Gently apply pure Aloe vera gel to irritated areas by rubbing gently until the Aloe is absorbed. The gel may not absorb entirely, but it is okay to leave a small layer of the gel on the skin and place clothing or diapers over the gel.

Add small amounts of Aloe vera juice to an infant's or child's juice. Aloe vera juice is sold at most grocery stores and has been shown to help soothe an upset digestive tract. If your child has an upset stomach, read the label on the Aloe vera juice container and add the recommended amount of juice to your child's regular juice. Aloe vera juice is made from the gel of the plant but, although it is natural, always consult your paediatrician before administering Aloe vera juice to your child.

Apply gel to sun-burned skin. Aloe vera gel helps to re-moisturize sunburned and dehydrated skin. The gel helps soothe the pain associated with sunburn and protects the skin, which allows damaged skin to heal quicker than if you do not use Aloe vera gel. Rub the gel gently over burned areas of the skin several times a day.
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Cooking with Aloe Vera

Aloe vera can be cooked with sugar or spices. It is a popular houseplant and medicinal herb. Many people drink Aloe vera juice or use it in smoothies or fruit desserts. It is also possible, though, to cook Aloe vera. It is popular in Asian, Latin American and other cuisines. The health benefits of Aloe vera are said to be numerous. Some people believe it helps individuals with diabetes. The plant is reported to be good as a laxative and can provide relief from irritable bowel syndrome. Aloe vera is high in vitamins C, A and B-12, protein, calcium, zinc and magnesium.

Wash some Aloe vera leaves. Even though the skin should not be eaten, remove any loose dirt from the skin so that it doesn't get onto the plant's flesh when the leaves are sliced open. Slice off the bottom of each leaf. Drain each leaf. Prop up the leaves in a bowl or colander and let them sit for one to two hours. A yellow, gooey substance is in the Aloe vera leaves, and this should be removed before cooking. Peel the Aloe vera leaves by removing the outer skin. Some people prefer to cut into the side and fillet the leaf as if it were a fish. Because the plant can be slippery, be careful. Discard the skin, which can cause stomach upset in some people. Cut the flesh of the Aloe vera into 1-inch cubes. Cook the Aloe vera. Simmer Aloe vera with your favourite spices for about 1/2 hour. The Aloe will probably shrink during cooking. Another option is to add the Aloe vera to a favourite soup or stew recipe about 30 minutes before the dish is finished cooking. Some people boil Aloe vera cubes in 1 cup of sugar with the juice of one lemon or lime for a refreshing, sweet treat.

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How to make usable Aloe Vera products from the plant

Extraction of natural Aloe vera from the plant

The extraction of natural Aloe vera gel can be done easily in the home. The extract can be refrigerated for up to a year. First, cut a large leaf at an angle, from the outer base of an Aloe vera plant. Place the Aloe leaf in a bowl, allowing the sap to drain from the leaf. Using a sharp knife, cut away the spiky edges from the sides and remove the skin. Peal back the rind and using a spoon, scoop out the Aloe gel. Place the gel in a jar, tightly sealed, and refrigerate.

How to Make Aloe Vera Gel for Herbal Remedies

If you are interested in making use of Aloe vera's reputed properties, there is a simple recipe to make gel using the pulp of Aloe vera leaves. You can either grow the commonly available ingredients or purchase them from stores in your local area. Make Aloe vera gel using ingredients harvested from fresh Aloe vera leaves. You want the pulp, but not the sap, because the latter is a laxative. You can either grow your own Aloe vera at home or find a local supplier of fresh leaves. If you are interested in cultivating your own Aloe vera, the plant is widely available because of its popularity at most gardening stores. Other ingredients in Aloe vera gel include vitamins C and E.
EQUIPMENT NEEDED You'll need both a knife and a spoon to be able to easily harvest the main ingredient from the Aloe vera leaves. These tools will also come in handy for grinding down vitamin C tablets and extracting vitamin E from its capsules if you are using those ingredients. A vegetable blender is necessary for producing the gel, while cheesecloth can be helpful for straining the final results. You'll also need some kind of container to hold the contents, and one with a tight seal is preferable.
EXTRACTING THE PULP Use a knife to harvest the outermost leaves on the Aloe vera, the ones that are biggest and lean closest to the soil. Let each leaf sit tilted at an angle to drain the sap, but don't panic if this doesn't happen. Make a cut along the length of each leaf. Scoop out the contents using a spoon. Press on the leaf to get the most pulp out of each leaf, but not too hard, because you don't want the yellow sap getting into your pulp.
CREATING AND STORING THE GEL Crush enough vitamin C tablets and extract enough vitamin E to put in 500 mg of vitamin C and 400 IU of vitamin E for every quarter cup of the Aloe vera pulp. Pour the mixture into the vegetable blender and then let it get to work. You can use cheesecloth to strain the contents if you want to eliminate any chunks floating in the gel. Both the vitamin C and E help to keep the Aloe vera gel from spoiling, but you should still use a sterilized container to store it in a cool place. The Making of Aloe Vera Gel The making of Aloe vera gel is a simple process and can be done commercially or from the comfort of your own home.
EXTRACTION Before Aloe vera gel can be made, the products of an Aloe vera plant must be separated. Aloe vera plants have two main parts: the coloured sap (aloin) and the clear gel of the inside of the plant. For Aloe vera gel, the clear inside gel must be extracted from the plant. To do this, the plant leaf is split in half, and a spoon or other tool is used to scoop the gel from the plant, separating the soothing Aloe gel from the aloin. It is important that no aloin be included in the Aloe gel, as aloin is the protective sap that is used to keep animals from eating the plant in the wild. As such, it acts as an irritant instead of a soothing agent like the inner gel.
PRODUCTION Once the internal Aloe gel has been extracted from an Aloe plant, it goes into production. During this process, the gel is usually combined with water to make the product go farther and last longer. Guar gum or xanthan gum is then combined with the solution to give the Aloe vera gel its thick consistency.
PRESERVATIVES Since Aloe is a natural product, its shelf life is rather limited. To help increase this shelf life, most Aloe vera gels have preservatives added to the final product to keep them fresh longer. Citric acid and vitamin E are most commonly added to the gel to extend the shelf life of the product.

How to Make Homemade Aloe Vera Juice

Talk to your doctor. Tell your physician that you want to add Aloe vera juice to your diet. If you have any serious pre-existing conditions or allergies your doctor can tell you if there could be any counter indications by ingesting Aloe vera. Buy a large bottle or two of Aloe vera juice at a natural foods store. Check the expiration date to ensure it is a fresh bottle. Drink one cup of Aloe vera juice daily in the morning. Make a daily detailed log of your process. Start on the first day you begin drinking the juice by listing your symptoms, energy level, how much Aloe you drank and any other significant notes. Keeping this log is a way to monitor and measure your symptoms as you regularly drink the juice. Read your log after drinking Aloe juice for one or two weeks. Note any changes that you feel. If the results are positive, and the symptoms have improved, continue to drink Aloe juice daily for maintaining your health. If you notice no results, repeat steps three and four. If you still notice no results, drink another cup of Aloe vera juice daily in the evening. If at any time your symptoms get worse or you develop new symptoms, contact your doctor immediately.

How to Prepare Aloe Vera for Drinking

Aloe vera juice can be made at home with the gel of mature Aloe plants. The gel required to make the juice should be procured from a mature plant---at least three to four years of age. The juice is made with the assistance of a blender and mixed with another liquid to cut the taste of the Aloe vera juice. Remove one to two leaves from the Aloe vera plant by gently pulling them off. Remove the outer thorny rind of the leaves with a sharp knife. This will expose the latex of the leaves---a yellow layer found directly underneath. Cut through the latex of the plant with a sharp knife and scoop out the inner Aloe vera gel with a small spoon or the tip of the knife. Place the gel into a small bowl. Examine the gel for any latex remnants. It is crucial to remove all traces of latex, as this layer has been known to cause cramping and diarrhoea. Place two tablespoons of Aloe vera gel into a blender that contains one cup of juice, such as orange or grapefruit juice. Blend the ingredients on a low setting for two to three minutes. Pour the juice out of the blender and consume.

How to Prepare Aloe Vera Juice

You can easily grow your own Aloe vera plants to use for Aloe vera juice. Aloe vera juice is also effective in the treatment of gastro-intestinal complications such as irritable bowel syndrome, irregular bowel clearance and ulcers. For safety reasons, you should only make Aloe vera juice, from the gel. Do not eat Aloe vera latex. You can prepare several different versions of Aloe vera juice, depending on your tastes, and add a few tablespoons of coconut to enhance your drink's antiviral potency. Aloe vera juice is also said to improve blood circulation, strengthen the immune system, and heal internal tissue damage. Drinking Aloe vera juice can also detoxify your blood and improve general body health. Consult your doctor if you have any medical conditions before drinking Aloe vera juice. If you have colitis, appendicitis, intestinal problems or take certain medications, it is advisable to ask your doctor about the side effects of the juice. Decide if you want to drink Aloe vera juice plain or with added flavours. Some flavours include tangerine, cranberry, and berry.
PREPARE ALOE VERA JUICE. Use your knife to cut the edges and ends off the Aloe vera leaf. Pull the two sides of the Aloe vera leaf apart. Remove the clear pulp from each half of the leaf with a spoon. Repeat step 1 until you have 2 tbsp of the Aloe vera pulp. Set the Aloe pulp aside. Peel and core the apple, then slice them into quarters. Peel the cucumber, and then slice it into discs. Place the apple and the cucumbers into the blender. Add the juice from one lemon to the blender. Add the Aloe pulp to the mixture. Blend the mixture together until it is smooth. Place the mixture in the refrigerator to set and chill for at least two hours before serving.
HEALTHY ALOE VERA JUICE Use your knife to cut the edges and ends off the Aloe vera leaf. Pull the two sides of the Aloe vera leaf apart. Remove the clear pulp from each half of the leaf with a spoon. Repeat step 1 until you have 1 tbsp of the Aloe pulp. Set the Aloe pulp aside. Peel and core two green apples, then slice them into quarters. Peel two carrots, then slice them into small pieces. Remove rind from the orange, and then divide it into pieces. Place the apples, carrots and orange pieces into a blender. Blend until smooth. Add Aloe pulp to the mixture and blend again. Serve immediately over ice, or put the juice into the refrigerator and chill for two hours before serving.
EXOTIC ALOE VERA JUICE DRINK Use your knife to cut the edges and ends off the Aloe vera leaf. Pull the two sides of the Aloe vera leaf apart. Remove the clear pulp from each half of the leaf with a spoon. Repeat step 1 until you have 1 tbsp of the Aloe pulp. Set the pulp aside. Peel and core one green apple, then slice it into quarters. Peel one carrot, and then slice it into small pieces. Put the apple and carrot pieces into the blender. Add the pineapple chunks to the blender. Blend until smooth. Add the Aloe pulp, then the coconut milk, to the mixture and blend again. Serve immediately over ice, or put the juice into the refrigerator and chill for two hours before serving.

How to Make Homemade Aloe Vera Lotion

The key to making your own Aloe vera lotion is to blend the ingredients thoroughly so that the mixture becomes smooth. Aloe lotion can be used all over the body every day and is gentle enough for children. It is also a good product to use for dry skin and for relief from sunburn.
Put 1 cup Aloe vera gel, 1 tsp. lanolin and 1 tsp. vitamin E oil in a blender.
Mix the ingredients on low until thoroughly combined.
Put 1/3 cup coconut oil and 3/4 oz. beeswax in a microwavable bowl.
Microwave for 30 seconds on high.
Remove the bowl from the microwave and stir the oil and beeswax together.
Microwave for another 10 seconds on high and re-stir. Repeat these two steps until the beeswax completely melts.
Stir 3/4 cup almond oil into the beeswax/coconut oil mixture.
Heat the mixture for 10 seconds in the microwave.
Turn the blender back on to medium speed, and slowly pour the beeswax and oil mixture into the blender.
Blend the contents until it achieves a texture like mayonnaise; this should happen fairly quickly.
Turn off the blender.
Add 1 teaspoon of an essential oil in a scent that you prefer. Lavender, vanilla and strawberry are some popular fragrances.
Set a funnel in the opening of the glass bottle that you'll use to store the lotion. It's a good idea to have two or three of them for storage, depending on the size of the bottles. Scrape the lotion with a plastic spatula into the bottle. Do this quickly since the mixture will rapidly cool.
Store the lotion in a cool, dry place.

How to Make a Massage Lotion with Aloe Vera

Aloe vera gel can be extracted directly from the pulp of the large leaves of the Aloe vera plant but this particular Aloe vera gel contains a lot of the plants natural sap and is less effective, compared to the Aloe gel that is commonly used in treatments. The Aloe vera gel that is used for natural treatment is found deep within the meat of the Aloe vera plant's leaves and is transparent in colour, sticky in texture and has a sour taste. A massage lotion, therefore, made of Aloe vera will not only leave the skin feeling smooth and silky but nourished, as well.
Heat four tbsp. of cocoa butter, four tbsp. of coconut oil, and 1/2 cup of olive oil in the first double boiler. Use a second double boiler to heat the Aloe vera juice.
After the cocoa butter has melted, remove both double boilers from the heat. Slowly pour the Aloe vera juice into the cocoa butter mixture.
Beat the mixture until cool.
Add nine drops of essential oil, if desired, and mix well. Lavender and eucalyptus are examples of essential oils that add a nice fragrance to the massage lotion.
Place in sterilized jars and seal. Store in the refrigerator, since the cocoa butter will liquefy if left at room temperature.

How to Use Aloe Vera to Make Herbal Cosmetics

Aloe Vera's emollient, moisturizing qualities make it a popular ingredient in cosmetics, sun tan lotions, facials and shaving creams.
Use a paring knife to slice off the leaf's spikes. Peel off the leaf's outer skin.
Put the peeled Aloe Vera in the blender and blend it to a pulp.
Measure out 1/4 cup of pulp. Crush the Vitamin C tablet to powder (you can use a spoon). Add it to the blended Aloe Vera.
Puncture or open the Vitamin E and squeeze the contents into the mixture. Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
Store the gel in a clean jar and refrigerate. Use your Aloe Vera gel as a remedy for irritated skin, cuts, burns or wounds. You can apply it several times a day.

How to make Aloe Vera Shower Gel

Aloe gel, from the leaf of the Aloe vera herb, is nature's own moisturizing balm. Aloe vera can be used to formulate a healing, moisturizing shower gel that revitalizes your skin, leaving it feel soft and pampered.
Warm up 11/2 cups of distilled water in your pan until it is not much warmer than room temperature. Distilled water is preferable to tap water, which tends to leave your gel cloudy.
Pour the shampoo concentrate into a bowl and add the warmed water. Stir to mix the two thoroughly.

How to Dilute Aloe Vera Gel

Fresh gel from your Aloe vera can easily be diluted into a solution and kept in your refrigerator, ready to use whenever it is needed.
Harvest the gel of six fresh Aloe vera leaves. Each leaf should be at least 6 inches long. Cut it near its base and allow the sap to drain while the leaf stands upright for several minutes, and then slit the leaf lengthwise and spoon the gel out of its centre.
Place the harvested gel in a pot and add 4 ounces of distilled water.
Bring the pot to a soft boil.
Drop one 500 mg tablet of vitamin C into the liquid and crush it against the inside of the pot with the back of a spoon.
Puncture one vitamin E gel tab and squeeze the contents into the pot.
Stir the ingredients.
Turn the pot off.
Allow the contents to cool, and then place them in a sterilized glass jar. Store the jar in the refrigerator.

How to Cold Press Aloe

Cold pressing your own Aloe vera for consumption is an easy process.
Cut 10 to 15 leaves from a healthy Aloe vera plant. The amount of leaves cut depends on the amount of juice you want.
Place the Aloe vera leaves into a food processor.
Pulse the food processor until you get a slushy liquid.
Pour the mixture of liquid and solids from the food processor into a sieve lined with cheesecloth set onto a glass bowl. Only do a small amount of the mixture at a time.
Press the mixture with a plastic or silicone spatula so that the juice runs into the bowl and the solids are left in the sieve. Scrape the bottom of the sieve to get all of the juice off.
Store the juice in a glass jar with a lid or plastic container sealed in the refrigerator

How to Store Aloe Vera Gel

If you want to keep your Aloe Vera gel as fresh as possible, then follow the steps outlined in the article below. With proper storage, your gel will last longer and provide a greater benefit.
Place the Aloe Vera gel inside a clean, air-tight container. This prevents air and moisture from getting into the gel. Most of the time, the product comes with its own bottle to store it in. This is fine; just watch the expiration date on the bottle. Once expired, you need to throw the old Aloe Vera out.
Store the bottle in a slightly cool, dark place. Cabinets are great spaces to store your Aloe Vera, as long as they are not moist or hot. Room temperature works fine as well. Keeping it away from extreme temperatures for prolonged periods of time is the best way to preserve your Aloe Vera gel.
Keep your Aloe Vera out of the sun. Taking it with you to the pool is fine; just try to keep it in a bag, or in the shade. Aloe Vera gel feels better, and works better, when it is cool. This is especially true if you are rubbing it on sunburn.
Close the lid tightly after each use. The Aloe Vera gel could dry out, which could ruin it, especially if the lid is left open constantly.
Add the Aloe vera gel and salt. Add food colouring and a few drops of essential oils. Mix the ingredients thoroughly, forming a thick gel mixture.
You can adjust the amount of food colouring and essential oil till you get the colour and scent that you want.
Pour your shower gel into the shampoo bottle or other container of your choice. It will be food for about six months.
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How to propagate Aloe Vera

How to Split Aloe Vera Plants

Propagate Aloe vera by splitting the Aloe vera plant in half, which is also called dividing it. Over time, the Aloe vera plant will get too big for a pot, or start to grow into other plants when outdoors. Wait until spring or summer to divide the Aloe vera plant. This is the beginning of its growing season and will allow it to recover quicker from the splitting process. Crouch down next to the Aloe vera plant and hold back the leaves so that you can examine the roots. If the plant is in a pot, remove it from the pot so you can see the root system. Insert a shovel into the ground 1 to 2 feet away from the base of the Aloe vera plant and lean back on the handle of the shovel to break up the soil. Remove the shovel from the soil and reinsert it directly beside the first location to loosen the soil there. Continue until you have loosened the soil all the way around the base of the Aloe vera plant. Grasp the base of the Aloe vera plant and pull it straight up out of the ground. If the plant is large, you may need to have someone help you pull it out of the ground. Lay the Aloe vera plant on the ground sideways and brush away as much soil from the roots as you can using your hands. Pull very gently on the roots of the Aloe vera plant it separates easily into at least three clumps. The Aloe vera plant is actually a series of clumps growing close together, so separating them requires little effort. Pick up one of the clumps and place your thumb into the roots. Work your thumb through the roots until you separate the smaller section. If needed, use a sharp knife to cut through the smaller roots. Place one-third of the cuttings back into the original hole and fill the hole in with the surrounding soil. Place the remaining Aloe vera plants in a shady outdoor location and let them sit for two to three days. Fill plant pots with a potting soil specifically formulated for succulent plants. Dig a hole in the centre of the soil and insert one section of Aloe vera into the hole. Fill it the hole with additional potting soil and water the plant until the soil is moist.

How to Prune Aloe Vera Plants

Remove any withered leaves from the base of your Aloe vera plant using hand pruners. Cut them off as close as possible to the base of the plant. Cut off any living but damaged leaves or leaves that are showing signs of rot. Cut cleanly through the leaves close to the base of the plant. Cut off any old flower spikes after the flowers have died off but before the seedpods grow. This prevents your plant from putting its energy into seeds rather than growing new leaves. For cosmetic reasons, cut through the flower stems below the level of the leaves. Remove any offsets or pups from the main plant once they have at least three of their own leaves. These can be grown in standard potting compost to produce new plants or discarded.

Planting Considerations

Aloe vera is a suitable choice for container or rock garden planting. For best results, fertilize in April and July. Any dead flower heads should be removed.

Habitat

Full sunlight and low humidity are recommended for Aloe vera. Plant Aloe vera in a pot or location that provides adequate drainage. Water using warm, non-acidic water. Allow the soil to dry out until slightly moist before re-watering.

The Best Way to Grow an Aloe Vera Plant in your home

If you are growing an Aloe vera in your home, you must be careful to not over water it. Over watering can damage or even kill the plant. You can create an experiment to figure out the best way to grow an Aloe vera plant. Aloe plants are very delicate, requiring just the right amount of water. Give it too much water, and the plant will rot, but give it too little water and it will not grow. You can find the perfect amount by planting identical Aloe plants in each of several pots, and giving each of them water on a different schedule. For example, you might give one of them an ounce of water once a day, and another, an ounce of water only once every other day. Take data on the growth of each Aloe vera plant to see which is growing the most.
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Aloe Vera for Pets

How to Use Aloe Vera for Pet Skin Problems

Aloe vera is traditionally used on human beings, but can also be used to treat pet skin problems. It can be extracted from the leaves of the plant and applied, or diluted and mixed with other ingredients in the form of a pill, gel, or even shampoo. Before using Aloe vera on your pet, consult a veterinarian to ensure that it is suitable for your pet and his particular skin problem. Smooth the Aloe vera directly on the pet's skin rash, sore or infection. The Aloe will decrease inflammation of the wound, remove dead cells, encourage the growth of new skin cells, and discourage any discharge from the wound.
Put Aloe vera pills in your pet's food to heal skin problems. Taken orally, these will heal external skin problems like inflammation, wounds, burns or rashes. Consult a veterinarian before purchasing oral Aloe vera medications for your pet. Wash your pet with a shampoo made from Aloe vera and oatmeal. This can reduce skin irritation and itching, as both the oatmeal and Aloe will reduce the sensation that is causing the itch. You can purchase pet shampoo made from these two products online or at most pet stores.
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