Aloe Vera

Aloe Barbadensis

This succulent, stemless plant grows up to 100cm (3ft) in height. The leaves are thick and fleshy, green to green/grey with some varieties showing white flecks on their surfaces. Flowers in summer on a spike up to 90cm (3ft) tall. Each flower is pendulous, with a yellow tubular corolla 2-3cm long. Aloe vera forms an arbuscular mycorrhiza, a symbiosis that allows for better nutrient absorption from the soil.

Family: Liliaceae

Which probiotic is it in?: Aloe Vera is a key herb in Revive

Habit and cultivation: Probably originating in Northern Africa and now growing wild and cultivated world wide. Those grown in pots have a lower anthraquinone content. Propagated by breaking off small rootlets. Very hardy. To collect the gel and bitter liquid, the leaves are cut and drained as required.

Actions (known for): Immune enhancing, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor, laxative, stimulates bile secretion, wound healing.

History

Frequently cited as being used in herbal medicine since the first century AD, the name Aloe derives from the Arabic word Alloeh meaning, ‘a shining bitter substance’. Vera in Latin means true. Greek scientists 2000 years ago regarded it as a universal cure-all. Muslims (especially in Egypt) regarded Aloe as a religious symbol. Pilgrims to the shrine of the prophet were required to hang the Aloe over his doorway. Both the Jews in Cairo and the Mohammedans used it above their doors to protect the household.

Parts used:

Juice from the leaf.

Constituents (bio available chemicals):

Anthroquinones: aloin, aloe-emodin. Resins, Tannins, Polysaccharides, Aloectin B.

Nutritional constituents:

Vitamins: A,C,E,B12 folic acid and choline. Minerals: Calcium, magnesium, copper, selenium, chromium, manganese, potassium, sodium and zinc.

Indications:

Atonic constipation, suppressed menstruation, ulcerative colitis, type ll diabetes, viral infections.

Dosage:

25ml of Aloe juice concentrate taken 1-4 x daily and can be mixed with orange or pineapple juice.

British Herbal Pharmacopoeia

Cautions for therapeutic doses

Avoid during pregnancy and breast feeding. Do not mix with other herbal extracts.

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