What is Aloe Vera?
Aloe Vera or Aloe Barbadensis is a succulent plant that has many health benefits. It has been used in alternative medicine to treat many diseases. Aloe Vera is a cactus-like plant that thrives in hot, dry climates. Aloe gel, which is the main part of the plant, used for cosmetic and medicinal purposes.
The use of aloe vera dates back to early Egypt about 6,000 years ago. Aloe vera, also called “plant of immortality”, was once given to the funeral of the pharaohs. Besides Egypt, other countries have used aloe vera for its health benefits. These include Greece, India, Mexico, Japan, and China.
Aloe vera contains active ingredients that offer the health benefits of the plant. Aloe Vera leaves contain at least 160 essential ingredients. Some experts say there are at least 300-400 important components. For example, aloe vera contains vitamins A, C, E, and B, antioxidants that avoid free radicals to prevent oxidative stress. Aloe vera also contains monosaccharides, polysaccharides, hormones, enzymes, and phytochemicals.
Health Benefits of Aloe Vera
Aloe vera is popular for its various health benefits, including:
Increased Wound Healing
Aloe vera is most often used as a topical agent, which means that it is rubbed into the skin. It has been used for burns and wounds for many years. In fact, it is an effective medication to shorten the healing time of burns.
How does aloe vera support wound healing? Aloe vera contains glucomannan, a polysaccharide, and gibberellin, a growth hormone. These act through interaction with growth factor receptors found in fibroblasts. As a result, fibroblast proliferation is triggered, thereby increasing collagen synthesis. Therefore, the process accelerates wound healing.
Many studies have shown that aloe vera has a protective effect on the skin. Protects the skin from free radical damage and the effects of radiation on the skin. The exact mechanism is not clear, but when applied to the skin, aloe vera gel produces metallothionein, a powerful antioxidant protein, and inhibits hydroxyl radicals.
Soothe Insect Bites
Because of the anti-inflammatory ingredients in aloe vera, it was used to soothe insect bites. In addition, when applied to the skin, aloe vera acts as an itching agent that reduces or prevents itching.
Aloe vera is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent. It inhibits the cyclooxygenase pathway and reduces the production of prostaglandin E2 from arachidonic acid. Because inflammation is usually caused by oxidative free radical damage, aloe vera acts as an antioxidant that fights free radicals.
Aids in Digestion
One of the most popular health benefits of aloe vera is its ability to aid digestion. Drinking aloe vera juice improves digestion and relieves acidity, ulcers, and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
Aloe vera is considered a natural laxative. The anthraquinones contained in the latex can help to increase the water in the intestine and trigger mucus secretion. It also stimulates intestinal peristalsis and prevents constipation.