Healing Herbs and Spices: Aloe Vera Gel and Juice

Illustration:  Galtier-Boissière, Larousse Medical Illustré, Paris, 1912
During my Panchakarma treatment, my Ayurvedic practitioner had me take 2 to 4 ounces of Aloe  Vera gel every morning.  Aloe Vera is recognized in Ayurveda (and in the holistic and natural health community at large) as one of nature's miracles which offers many health benefits.  During Panchakarma, it is used to to help the detoxification process and as a tonic to aid in cleansing the blood, liver and digestive system.

But Aloe Vera's benefits are not just limited its detox and cleansing properties.  Considered and classified as an herb, it it believed to have wide-ranging healing effects and has been used as a natural herbal medicine in both external and internal applications to treat a staggering number of health conditions, including:

  • Inflammation
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol levels
  • Hypertension
  • Arthritis and joint pain
  • Muscle pain and bruises
  • Varicose and spider veins
  • Peptic and duodenal ulcers
  • Acid reflux
  • Colic
  • Nausea
  • Constipation and hemorrhoids
  • Gum disease
  • Colds and cough
  • Burns, cuts, scrapes and stings
  • Rashes and other skin conditions
  • Viral and fungal infections
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Herpes
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Excess weight

Additionally, Aloe Vera is thought to have antioxidant, alkaline, anti-inflammatory and immune boosting effects and properties and is currently being being studied in connection with the treatment of cancer, diabetes and heart disease.   Its no wonder then, that Aloe Vera is used both internally and topically during Panchakarma and in many other herbal preparations.

Aloe Vera Gel
Aloe Vera is available as a gel, juice, in powder form or in capsules.  When selecting an Aloe Vera product, it should be noted that although there are over 200 species of Aloe, only several have medicinal properties.  Of those, Aloe Vera Barbadenis is considered the most potent.  It is also recommended to select Aloe products made from cold-pressed, whole leaf.

Aloe Vera Juice
My Ayurveda practitioner gave me Lily of the Dessert Certified Organic Whole Leaf Aloe Vera Gel, which I continue to take.  I have also added Lily of the Dessert Certified Organic Whole Leaf Aloe Vera Juice.  Both are available at health and natural food stores, a few select supermarkets and online retailers, like Amazon.

More Reading:
Whole-Leaf Aloe Vera, Almost a Panacea by Bruce Eric Hedendal, D.C., Ph.D.

Aloe Vera Health Benefits [Infographic]
Ayurveda Series
Panchakarma Journal

This information is provided for general interest and informational purposes only. It is not intended as guidance for medicinal use. Consultation with professional health care provider is always advised and encouraged.
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