Unless you’ve been living under a rock (and even then, with the internet that’s no excuse) you’ve probably heard somewhere that aloe vera is a super plant. This resilient succulent – that’s what they call the green plants that not even the gardening-impaired among us can kill – is loaded with amazing properties and can probably replace many of the toxin-riddled options lurking in your cabinets.
The leaves of the aloe vera plant are filled with a clear gel which is the portion of the plant that is most often used in health and beauty applications. The gel contains vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, and amino acids which are what gives the plant its superpowers.
Here are 6 ways you can use this super plant in its natural form to improve your health and beauty, all without the hefty price tag of large-scale manufactured products that are often full of chemicals and toxins.
Aloe vera juice (a mixture of the aloe gel and water) has been found to be quite effective in detox diets. The plant helps with digestion, constipation, and hydration, and has also been found to support the immune system and lower cholesterol. These are all critical elements of the detox process.
2. Soothe burns
Aloe vera gel has been known to work well when it comes to sunburn. Research suggests that applying the gel directly to inflamed skin has soothing effects. The gel has also been found to help reduce itchiness.
3. Help with the healing of wounds
If you have a wound that you’re hoping will not leave a ghastly scar you may want to consider trading in the neosporinNeosporinre natural alternative. When applied consistently aloe vera gel works well for the healing of wounds and reducing the appearance of scars. We should warn you though that it is only effective on fresh wounds and not that scar left from the bug bite from your last jungle excursion a year ago. Sorry!
4. Hair conditioner
Skip the commercially manufactured hair conditioner laced with unpronounceable chemicals and try aloe vera gel the next time you want to condition your hair. The gel has tons of vitamins and minerals that nourish the hair and keep it strong and healthy. If you are plagued by dandruff aloe vera is still a good choice as its antibacterial and antifungal properties make it rather effective in removing dead cells on the scalp and its soothing properties will help the itching often associated with dandruff.
5. Improve oral health
Aloe vera is also great for reducing the buildup of plaque on the teeth. Studies have found that an aloe vera mouth rinse may be as effective as chlorhexidine, which is a standard mouthwash ingredient. Simply gargle a mixture of aloe gel and water twice daily to ward off bad breath and plaque.
6. Anti-Aging effects
While the research is still young (pun intended), the data suggests that aloe vera could prove useful in anti-aging treatments. Aloe vera has been found to have moisturizing qualities and helps improve the skin’s elasticity. It also helps boost collagen production and collagen is very important to the skin’s elasticity and its ability to fight off the effects of aging.