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Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera

Historical use of various Aloe species by humans is well documented. Documentation of the clinical effectiveness is available, although relatively limited. Of the 300 species of Aloe, only a few were used traditionally as a herbal medicine, aloe vera again being the most commonly used version of aloe in herbal medicine. Also included are Aloe perryi (found in northeastern Africa) and Aloe ferox (found in South Africa). The Greeks and Romans used aloe vera to treat wounds. In the Middle Ages, the yellowish liquid found inside the leaves was favored as a purgative. It should be noted that processed aloe that contains aloin is generally used as a laxative, whereas processed aloe Vera juice that does not contain significant aloin is used for digestive healing. Some species, particularly Aloe Vera are used in alternative medicine and in the home first aids. Both the translucent inner pulp and the resinous yellow aloin from wounding the Aloe plant are used externally to relieve skin discomforts. As an herbal medicine, aloe vera juice is commonly used internally to relieve digestive discomfort "aloe for heartburn". 

Some modern research suggests Aloe Vera can significantly slow wound healing compared to normal protocols of treatment. Other reviews of randomized and controlled clinical trials have provided no evidence that Aloe Vera has a strong medicinal effect. Today, aloe Vera is used both internally and externally on humans. The gel found in the leaves is used for soothing minor burns, wounds, and various skin conditions like eczema and ringworm. The extracted aloe Vera juice aloe Vera plant is used internally to treat a variety of digestive conditions. The use of this herbal medicine was popularized in the 1950s in many Western countries. The gel's effect is nearly immediate; it also applies a layer over wounds that is said to reduce the chance of any infection. There have been relatively few studies about possible benefits of Aloe gel taken internally, yet it has been found to be anti-carcinogenic. Data also suggest that components of Aloe inhibit tumor growth. There have been some studies in animal models which indicate that extracts of Aloe have a significant anti-hyperglycemic effect, and may be useful in treating Type II diabetes. These studies have not been confirmed in humans. Reference

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