It warms my heart when I notice my kids harvest Aloe Vera, split it open and rub it on their cuts and scrapes. I have succeeded in teaching them something, they know that Aloe Vera is a living first aid plant, soothing, healing, cooling and calming, how cool is that (excuse the pun)! This plant has a long and rich history, it has been used medicinally for over 5000 years, Cleopatra used it as part of her beauty routine and it is mentioned in the Bible.
This plant is heavy, unctuous and slimy (Kapha qualities for those interested in Ayurveda), although it looks spiky it is a very nurturing plant. Aloe Vera is super useful and it grows really well in pots, so no matter how small your home; you can always find space for a small Aloe Vera plant!
Commercial Aloe Vera juices are often diluted and combined with unwanted additives, so I would encourage you to grow your own plant. Here are 12 of the many benefits of this wonderful plant that the American Indians call ‘The Wand of Heaven’:
- Aloe Vera is widely used for many skin conditions, it is an excellent healer for cuts and wounds, and this plant has amazing antibacterial properties, rub the gel directly on.
- This plant is high in vitamins and minerals so helps boost the immune system.
- Aloe Vera contains Vitamins A, C, E (along with K and B12) so it is fantastic for the skin, just rub the gel directly on your face to cleanse before you moisturise.
- Make a homemade facemask, scrape the gel straight from inside the leaf of the plant, mix with some honey, apply to your face – leave for 20min while you relax and then wash off and moisturise.
- It is effective in treating stings and itches.
- Fantastic for burns, frostbite and sunburn, rub gel directly on, relieves pain and stops blistering. It relieves inflammation and accelerates healing.
- Healing for scar tissue and stretch marks, rub directly onto wounds daily.
- For breastfeeding mums its cooling properties work to heal mastitis.
- Aloe Vera has anti-inflammatory properties that assist in treating acne and pimples.
- Helps with digestion and detoxification.
- Take orally for leaky bowel and constipation.
- Aloe Vera contains substances (sulphur, lupeol, salicylic acid, cinnamic acid, urea nitrogen and phenol) that are active against bacteria, so it helps to treat fungal and viral infections.
Wow…what a miracle plant, and this is just the start. Enjoy Aloe Vera!
Reference: ‘The Yoga of Herbs, an Ayurvedic Guide to Herbal Medicine’ By Dr David Frawley and Dr Vasant Lad