Medical Professionals Agree on These Benefits of Aloe Vera

For centuries, the Aloe Vera plant has been a staple in homes around the world. Often referred to as the "burn plant," the spikey leaves were broken open and the gel inside used to treat burns. Over time, medical professionals have studied this wonder plant for other potential benefits, and they have not been disappointed. Aloe Vera contains a wealth of enzymes, vitamins and antioxidants giving it many medicinal and aesthetic uses.

Medicinal Uses of Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera contains many medicinal properties. It contains six antiseptic agents that make it effective in treating viral, bacterial and fungal infections.

1. Burn Treatment: The FDA approved Aloe Vera for burn treatment in 1959. It's approved for the treatment of first and second degree burns as well as for sunburns. In fact, studies show that burns treated with Aloe Vera heal nine days faster than those treated with conventional medicines. Simply apply the gel to the affected area and the cooling effects can be felt almost immediately.

2. Dental Plaque Reduction:  Two separate studies indicated that rinsing the mouth with 100%  Aloe Vera juice was as effective as chemical-based mouthwashes in reducing dental plaque. Aloe Vera helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease by killing both yeast (Candida albicans) and the bacterium the produces plaque (Streptococcus mutans).

3. Seborrheic Dermatitis (SD): Commonly called "cradle cap" when it occurs in infants, SD is an itchy, pinkish-red rash accompanied by crusty, yellow-white scales that appear on the scalp surface. According to a study in the Journal of Dermatological Treatment, using Aloe Vera reduced the signs, symptoms and area of SD significantly. Aloe Vera contributes to a healthier scalp by improving delivery of nutrients and oxygen to hair follicles in addition to stimulating blood circulation. Apply the gel fresh from the plant leaf or use a 100% Aloe Vera gel available in the pharmacy and skin care aisles of your favorite stores.

​Aesthetic and Cosmetic Uses of Aloe Vera

In addition to its medicinal benefits, Aloe Vera has long been used in beauty rituals. What gives this plant its cosmetic power? It contains Salicylic acid which is effective in treating problem skin, saponins which have cleansing properties, enzymes and hormones that fight skin irritation and powerful antioxidants that help skin heal faster.

1. Moisturizer:
Aloe is a humectant, meaning it helps retain and preserve moisture. It actually draws moisture to your dry skin and helps reduce water loss.

2. Soother: The enzymes and peptides in Aloe Vera work to calm irritated and sensitive skin. Applied after shaving, aloe reduces the effects of razor burn. It is also helpful in the treatment of rashes or scaling resulting from sensitive skin. Just massage a bit of Aloe Vera gel on the problem area.

3. Cleanser: The saponins, a naturally occurring soapy substance, in Aloe Vera make the gel an excellent cleanser for all skin types. It balances oily skin, and it can even help reduce the appearance of  acne breakouts.

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