Aloe is a genus of succulents wih sharp ridges on the leaves, and a thick, slippery gel on the inside. Aloes of all species have been used for a wide range of conditions, and is one of the longest recorded herbal medicines in human history. The use of aloe dates back to the early Egyptians, Chinese, and Roman empires. Alexander the great has been said to have conquered the island of Socotra, off the coast of Africa in order to secure Aloe growing there to heal his soldiers.
Aloe has a wide range of clinical actions both internally and externally, and remains popular amongst herbalists and product developers for anything from skin conditions, digestive complaints, liver dysfunction, and cardiovascular disease.
Main Herbal Actions:
Aloe is commonly used as a topical agent for burns, skin irritations, and eczema. The thick mucilage contained in the leaf gel has antiseptic, antinflammatory, and vulnerary actions, making it an excellent choice for general skin irritations.
Internally, aloe provides similar support for the epithelial tissue of the digestive tract. Consumed internally also offers some mild laxitive actions and hepatobiliary effects.
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Constituents of Interest
- Anthraquinone glycosides
- First Aid Plant
- Lu Hui (China)
Level Of Research:
Clinical Applications Of Aloe:
Aloe is a useful laxitive, hepatoprotective, and for reducing triglyceride and cholesterol levels. Externally it is very uesful for treating all kinds of skin irritations, burns, and traumatic damage.
Do not use aloe internally for long periods of time.
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See full Aloe vera monograph.