When I was a kid growing up in sunny San Diego, we always had aloe vera plants growing in pots on our patio. Anytime any one of us had a sunburn (I’m embarrassed to admit how often it happened), we would cut off a leaf and apply the gel inside to the scorched skin. It was a sweet relief. As it turns out, that natural sunburn gel is good for a lot more than just that. In this article, my team at UpWellness will take you on a guided tour of aloe vera, how to use it, and everything it can do for you.
Aloe vera is a medicinal succulent plant that is found in tropical climates. If you have ever opened up a plant leaf, you know that it is filled with a gooey, thick liquid that is most popular for remedying pain and swelling of burns. However, this is not the only health benefit that this popular plant offers. Drinking the healthy elixir known as aloe vera juice provides a variety of medicinal benefits that make this plant a viable superfood.
How is aloe vera juice made?
Aloe vera juice is made by either grinding or crushing the leaves of the aloe vera plant. After this, steps are taken to purify and filter the liquid goodness. The juice has a rather mild taste which makes it easy to incorporate into smoothies, shakes or juices.
Aloe vera juice is packed with nutrients
When you drink aloe vera juice, you replenish vital nutrients in your body. This elixir contains a hefty amount of vitamins B, C, E, and folic acid. It also contains smaller amounts of:
Aloe vera juice is also one of the only plants that contain vitamin B-12 which makes it a great supplement for vegetarians and vegans.
What are the health benefits of drinking aloe vera juice?
Here are some smart reasons to drink aloe vera juice regularly.
Aloe vera juice promotes alkalinity
We all know that poor dietary and lifestyle choices create conditions that promote illness or disease. According to proponents of the “alkaline diet”, this is especially true of acid-forming foods like red meat, dairy, and processed grains. Because aloe vera juice has an alkaline pH, consuming it can buffer the effects of acid and help to keep your pH balanced. Other smart alkaline dietary choices include leafy greens, legumes, root vegetables, fruits and nuts, and seeds.
Aloe vera juice is incredibly hydrating
Because a large part of the aloe plant is water, it is a useful remedy for dehydration. When you stay hydrated, your body is better able to detoxify, getting rid of impurities. In addition to being hydrating, aloe vera juice contains micronutrients that can promote liver and kidney function which improves detoxification. Drinking some aloe juice after exercise helps replace necessary fluids and reduce the buildup of lactic acid.
Drinking aloe vera juice can help you have great skin
If you desire vibrant and clear skin, aloe vera juice offers fantastic benefits. Drinking this tropical elixir can help reduce the frequency and severity of acne, dermatitis, and psoriasis. This is mainly due to its high antioxidant and vitamin content that protects the skin. Additional compounds in aloe vera can also neutralize the effects of ultraviolet radiation and repair skin from ultraviolet damage while reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Aloe vera juice is good for your intestines
Consuming aloe vera juice adds additional water to your intestines which can help with normal and healthy elimination. If you struggle with constipation, adding aloe vera juice to your diet may well improve your condition. Early evidence suggests that aloe vera juice helps promote healthy intestinal flora.
Aloe vera juice can help alleviate heartburn
There is some evidence that aloe vera can provide much-needed relief from heartburn attacks. Aloe vera juice contains compounds that help control the secretion of acid in the stomach. Case reports and anecdotal evidence support the hypothesis that aloe juice can help halt the progression and promote the healing of gastric ulcers.
Aloe vera juice helps promote liver function
Optimal liver function is the key to proper detoxification. Aloe vera juice can help to keep the liver healthy and working efficiently by hydrating the whole body.
Drinking aloe vera juice promotes optimal digestion
The enzymes in aloe vera juice assist in the breakdown of sugars and fats which can keep digestion running efficiently. If your digestive system is not working optimally, you will be unable to absorb essential nutrients from the food that you eat. Aloe also helps to decrease irritation and inflammation in the stomach and intestines and may be a useful remedy for people suffering from irritable bowel syndrome and similar inflammatory conditions of the intestines.
Aloe vera juice is great in your beauty routine
You can incorporate aloe vera juice into your beauty routine in a number of ways including:
- Makeup remover
- Sunburn remedy
- Lightweight moisturizer
- Makeup primer
- Mix with a few drops of peppermint oil to remedy an itchy scalp
What kind of aloe vera juice to pick
The best and safest aloe vera juice to drink is decolorized (purified, low anthraquinone) or whole leaf aloe vera. In a 2013 study, researchers tested various concentrations of aloe juice on mice for three months with no adverse side effects.
For those who take medications
Aloe juice can interfere with some medications. If you are taking a drug that is a substrate of Cytochrome P450 3A4 and CYP2D6 drinking the juice may increase the risk of side effects. Aloe may also impact the effects of anesthesia medication and cause excessive bleeding during surgery. If you are unsure of how aloe may impact you, speak with your physician before drinking the juice.
-The UpWellness Team