LIFE STYLE

Aloe Vera - a wonderful plant

Text and photos: Mariola Weindich-Mašek

10 March 2017

Aloe juice cures allergies and chronic wounds, reduces the level of blood sugar, improves immunity. Ointments, creams and gels made of aloe are useful in many skin diseases, such as ulcers, burns, wounds.

Aloe comes from Africa. For a long time it has been used in traditional medicine by many civilizations. Chinese were the first who have used it, but it was also known in ancient Egypt. Mentions about medicinal and cosmetic benefits of aloe vera can also be found in historical documents of the Romans, Greeks, Indians and the Arabs.

Aloe vera is a succulent- a plant storing watering its tissues. Therefore, it tolerates drought very well. It likes sun and grows best on a sunny windowsill. Soil for aloe vera should be sandy-clay. It needs moderate watering. If you want to use aloe vera for medicinal purposes, the plant must be three years old, and its leaves should have about 20 cm. A week before harvest you should stop watering.

Aloe gel applied on the skin stimulates skin regeneration, accelerates wound healing and it has anti-inflammatory properties. It also acts anti-virally. Aloe protects against sun rays. Due to its numerous health promoting properties, it is used in the treatment of the first and second degree sunburns and in the treatment of psoriasis, eczema, acne, or fungal infections. Due to the high content of mucus, the plant can also be used in cosmetics, because it moisturizes and smoothens the skin well.

Administered orally, it cleans and strongly stimulates the immune system. It is also used as a digestive aid, as well as in the treatment of duodenal and gastric ulcers.
Clean aloe gel can be made at home. That way we can be sure that the gel is 100% natural. Just cut the leaves on 5-cm pieces, then gently cut it to allow juice to leak from them. Pour juice into a jar, turn it off well and protect from light, heat and moisture.

Aloe is used externally and orally, but you should remember that it should not be taken orally by pregnant women, lactating, and by children under 6 years of age.