Thursday, June 18, 2009

aloe vera....the healing cactus.

Aloe Vera, or Ghrit Kumari in Sanskrit, is a member of the lily family and is very cactus-like in its characteristics. It is one to two feet tall; and its leaves are succulent, broad at the base and pointed at the tips, with spines along the edges. These fat leaves contain the clear healing gel that is 96% water. The other four percent contains 75 known substances including Vitamins A, B, C, E, calcium, amino acids for protein building, and enzymes used in the digestive system.

External Applications

The healing effect of aloe results from its ability to prevent injury to epithelial tissues, and promote healing of injured tissues. An epithelium is a layer of cells that covers the body. Our largest epithelium is the skin and one of the main applications of aloe vera is to soothe a variety of skin ailments such as mild cuts, insect stings, bruises, poison ivy and eczema. It also has antibacterial and antifungal qualities, and increases blood flow to wounded areas. In addition, aloe vera stimulates fibroblasts, the skin cells responsible for wound healing and the manufacture of collagen, the protein that controls the aging process of the skin and wrinkling. The skin absorbs aloe vera up to four times faster than water; it appears to help the pores of the skin open and receive the moisture and nutrients of the plant.

Aloe vera works very efficiently in healing the body in many different ways...........

Light burns and wounds: Cut off an aloe leaf and apply the gel several times a day

For balancing digestion and detoxification: take 1 tbsp of aloe vera gel empty stomach every morning, it also improves the functioning of the kidneys, liver and gall bladder....the gel acts as an anti inflammatory agent because the fatty acids in it alkalize the digestive juices and soothe the stomach, intestines and colon.

good for skin : by detoxification of the system it allows the skin to be glowing and soft when taken internally.
also it acts as a good moisturizer when applied locally, cures sunburns and tightens pores as well.

when applied on the scalp it cures mild infections of the scalp and ingestion of aloe gel improves the quality of hair by detoxifying the body.

the juice of aloe makes the hair shiny and acts as a fluffing agent when your hair feels limp and flat..just apply the juice by holding the split open leaf wrapped in a muslin throughout the length of hair, let dry and comb......see how it works.

Aloe Vera helps accelerate healing of Diabetic wounds. It dramatically lessens inflammation and improve pain response.

good anti aging agent : Aloe vera is one of the most potent antioxidants found naturally , it is an only known natural source of Vit E, C and B-12 .......when taken internally aloe helps in getting rid of free radicals from the body and promotes our immune system.

good remedy for arthritis :
aloe gel and juice is good for arthritis patients , it strengthens the muscles and ligaments and regenerates cartilage , the amino acids phenylalnine, proline, cystiene, valine and boron found in aloe is helpful in maintaining the skeletal system , improving bone health , cartilage healing and metabolizing calcium , phosphorus and magnesium.....not to mention, aloe is naturally rich in calcium and helps in better absorbtion of calcium as works especially well when taken along with the haldi, methi, sonth powder which i have posted earlier on this blog.

good remedy for migraine : i personally use it in migraine ...just keep the fleshy leaves in your fridge all the time, when the pain starts , split open the leaves to expose the juicy flesh and rub over the aching parts of head or over the whole forehead, scalp, eyes and even on the nape of the works best when the pain is just starting......later on , you may need 2-3 applications of the juice to get relief.

personally i eat aloe whenever i need it, mostly in the form of fresh gel or mixed with a healthy salad or is tasteless but a bit slimy, but when the juice is mixed with some other juice like orange , carrot or tomato it becomes more palatable ........i don't have any problem in eating the raw gel or juice as it is ...

aloe vera can be added in any salad as it is almost tasteless and can be combined with anything like cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes, or any kind of is better to eat the gel as it is first thing in the morning as it is more beneficial this way.......

aloe gel can be made into a soup or can be cooked into a roti or paratha too experience says, the soup is aweful in taste but the roti or paratha tatses normal .........anyway i prefer eating it in the form of raw gel like this.......

to remove the skin from the leaf you have to be a bit careful as it is a slippery object.........cut out the margins first , make 1.5 inch peices and then slice lengthwise along the skin........

the flesh from one piece is enough for one time consumption........

the leaf can be kept in fridge for a week and the separated gel keeps well for 2 days in the fridge.

i have found relief in honey bee bites or burns and scalds with the chilled aloe vera leaves kept in my fridge......i always keep at least one leaf.......nicely wrapped in cling film for an emergency....