Growing Of Aloe vera Plant In House :
The first step in aloe vera plant care is to realize that this plant is a succulent. Like cacti, succulents do best in dry conditions. When growing aloe vera plants, plant them in a cactus potting soil mix or a regular potting soil that has been amended with additional perlite or building sand. Also, make sure that the pot has plenty of drainage holes. Aloe vera plants cannot tolerate standing water.
One important thing in the care of aloe vera houseplants is that they have proper light. Aloe vera plants need bright light, so they do best in south- or west-facing windows.
How To Take Care Of The Plant
Another important part of how to grow an aloe plant is to water the plant properly. The soil of the aloe vera plant should be allowed to go completely dry before being watered. When the aloe plant is watered, the soil should be thoroughly drenched, but the water should be allowed to drain freely from the soil. The most common reason an aloe plant dies is that the owners water too often or do not allow the water to drain. Do not make this mistake when taking care of aloe houseplants.
You can fertilize your aloe vera plant, but aloes do not need to be fertilized. If you decide to add fertilizing to part of your aloe vera plant care routine, aloe vera plants should be fertilized once a year in the spring. You can use a phosphorus-heavy water-based fertilizer at half strength.
Growing aloe vera houseplants is not only easy but can also provide your family with a plant that can help treat minor burns and rashes. Now that you know a little more about how to care for an aloe vera plant, you need never be without this lovely and helpful plant.
Benefits Of Aloe Vera :
1. Aloe vera is a: Disinfectant, Anti-biotic, Anti-microbial, Germicidal, Anti-bacterial, Anti-septic, Anti-fungal & Anti-viral:
Wow, I think that covers all anti- bases. Okay, I admit, that was just a sneaky way to add in another 8 good reasons why you should keep an aloe vera as a handy (to to mention beautiful) house plant and incorporate it’s uses into your healthy lifestyle. Aloe vera’s active ingredients are sulphur, lupeol, salicylic acid, cinnamic acid, urea nitrogen and phenol which are substances that prevent the growth of disease-causing microorganisms and act as a team to provide antimicrobial activity thus eliminating many internal and external infections, also active against bacteria. It also helps to treat fungal and viral infections.
2. Aloe Helps Reduce Inflammation:
Aloe Vera contains 12 substances, including B-sisterole, which can help to slow down or inhibit inflammation. This may be able to help with painful joints due to stiffness and help improve joint flexibility.
3. Weight Loss – A Secondary effect:
Improving your digestion, and detoxifying your body will have a secondary effect of promoting weight loss because when you start to improve your digestion you naturally eliminate more efficiently, which is a primary way that we all detoxify – through our bowels. This will lighten your toxic load on your body and will give you more energy.
4. Aloe Vera Is High in Vitamins & Minerals:
Aloe Vera contains many vitamins including A, C, E, folic acid, choline, B1, B2, B3 (niacin), B6. Aloe Vera is also one of the few plants that contains vitamin B12. Some of the 20 minerals found in Aloe vera include: calcium, magnesium, zinc, chromium, selenium, sodium, iron, potassium, copper, manganese.
5. Aloe Vera is High in Amino Acids & Fatty Acids:
Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. There are about 22 amino acids that are necessary for the human body and it is said that 8 of these are essential. Estimates of the amino acids found in aloe range from 18-20 amino acids, with all 8 essential amino acids. Aloe vera also includes quite an impressive range of fatty acids. Aloe contains three plant sterols, which are important fatty acids – HCL cholesterol (which lowers fats in the blood), campesterol, and B-sitosterol. All are helpful in reducing symptoms of allergies and acid indigestion. Other fatty acids include linoleic, linolenic, myristic, caprylic, oleic, palmitic, and stearic.
6. Aloe Vera is an Adaptogen:
Aloe vera is a well-known adaptogen. An adaptogen is something that boosts the body’s natural ability to adapt to external changes and resist illness. It is thought that aloe’s power as an adaptogen balances the body’s system, stimulating the defense and adaptive mechanisms of the body. This allows you an increased ability to cope with stress (physical, emotional and environmental stress like pollution)
7. Aloe Helps with Digestion:
Poor digestion is related to many diseases. A properly functioning digestive tract is one of the keys and foundations of health. Aloe is known to soothe and cleanse the digestive tract and help improve digestion. The interesting thing about taking aloe internally is that, because it is an adaptogen, it helps with either constipation or diarrhea, helping to regulate your elimination cycles in whatever way you need. It’s been a great remedy for people with problems such as irritable bowel syndrome as well as acid reflux. Aloe also helps to decrease the amount of unfriendly bacteria and in our gut keeping your healthy intestinal flora in balance. Aloe is also a vermifuge, which means it helps to rid the body of intestinal worms.
8. Aloe Helps in Detoxification:
Aloe Vera is a gelatinous plant food, just like seaweeds and chia seeds. The main benefit to consuming gelatinous plant foods in your diet is that these gels move through the intestinal tract absorbing toxins along the way and get eliminated through the colon. This will help the proper elimination of waste from your body and help the detoxification of your body.
9. Aloe Alkalizes the Body:
Disease cannot manifest in an alkaline environment. Most people are living and subsisting on mostly acidic foods. For great health, remember the 80/20 rule – 80% alkaline forming foods and 20% acidic. Aloe vera is an alkaline forming food. It alkalizes the body, helping to balance overly acidic dietary habits.
10. Cardiovascular Health:
There hasn’t been a lot of studies conducted on aloe’s effect on cardiovascular health, but there has been some research to show that aloe vera extract injected into the blood, greatly multiplies the oxygen transportation and diffusion capabilities of the red blood cells. According to a study published in the 2000 issue of the British Medical Journal, beta sitosterol helps to lower cholesterol. By regulating blood pressure, improving circulation and oxidation of the blood, lowering cholesterol, and making blood less sticky, aloe vera juice may be able to help lower the risk of heart disease.
11. Aloe Helps Boost the Immune System:
I think given the stresses of our daily lives, every one can use a boost to their immune systems. The polysaccharides in aloe vera juice stimulate macrophages, which are the white blood cells of your immune system that fight against viruses. Aloe is also an immune enhancer because of its high level of anti-oxidants, which help combat the unstable compounds known as free-radicals, contributing to the aging process. (Free radicals are a bi-product of life itself, it is a naturally occurring process but we can overload ourselves with unnecessary free-radicals by living an unhealthy lifestyle). Aloe is also an antipyretic which means it used to reduce or prevent fever.
12. Aloe Vera is Great for the Skin:
Because of aloe’s well-known healing properties for the skin, aloe is one of the primary compounds used in the cosmetic industry. It is a known vulnerary, (meaning it helps heal wounds) and is great for applying topically to burns, abrasions, psoriasis and even to bug bites. Aloe acts as an analgesic, acting to help relieve pain of wounds. It’s feels especially good to cut a stem of aloe, place it in the fridge and rub it on sun burnt skin – the immediate soothing effect feels like an absolute lifesaver. Aloe is also an antipruritic: A substance that relieves or prevents itching. Aloe vera is an astringent: which causes the contraction of body tissues, typically used to reduce bleeding from minor abrasions. Due to aloe’s high water content (over 99% water) it is a great way to hydrate, moisturize and rejuvenate the skin and fits within my general guideline: “Don’t put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t eat!” Aloe increases the elasticity of the skin making it more flexible through collagen and elastin repair. Aloe is an emollient, helping to soften and soothe the skin. It helps supply oxygen to the skin cells, increasing the strength and synthesis of skin tissue and induces improved blood flow to the skin through capillary dilation.
How To Use :
1. A Skin Healing Mask :
Aloe vera is wonderful for not only healing acne scars but also for moisturizing the skin and keeping it youthful. It’s easy to make a healing facemask with nothing more than the gel of 1-2 aloe vera leaf halves. Mix this with some essential oil if you like for a nice scent (mint, thieves, and lavender are nice) or simply use it plain. Apply for 30 minutes and let it sit. It’s mild in scent on its own and has a particularly wonderful cooling feel.
2. A Sunburn Healing Gel :
As many people know, aloe vera is wonderful for helping with sunburn. You’ve likely seen those sunburn gels at drugstores with aloe vera, but the better option that will provide many less chemicals is to just use real aloe leaf. It can help reduce redness and pain associated with sunburn fairly quickly and can be applied liberally as much as needed. You can apply the gel plain or can mix it with a carrier oil, such as coconut and hemp, for extra moisturizing and healing benefits.
3. Minor Skin Burns :
This is the reason my grandmother always kept aloe on hand. Apparently she knew that her 12 grandchildren would have a few burns here and there. She was also a cook and liked to use it around if she touched a hot stove every now and then. I remember her always using aloe on our burns as children and though we thought she was weird, it always worked quickly. Aloe vera’s moisturizing and healing benefits transcend into the skin to reduce inflammation and aid in repair of the skin fairly quickly. To use it on a burn, apply just enough to coat the burn and cover with a bandage so it can do its job. Leave overnight and it should be better in the morning. The pain goes away almost immediately upon application, however.
4. Cuts and Wounds :
The gel of the aloe vera plant contains polysacharride fibers, which is essentially why it’s used as a digestive aid (but that also makes it problematic for some people). These fibers also help to seal wounds and it’s natural cooling properties help soothe pain from cuts and wounds. Apply aloe to minor skin cuts and wounds after you’ve cleansed the area with a warm cloth and some peroxide (yes, that part stings). Then seal it up with a bandage and let it sit to heal overnight or for a day.
5. Itching or Skin Irritation :
Psoriasis and skin irritation can both be a pain to deal with (literally) and can also be hard to manage. Many prescription creams and over the counter creams don’t work, and those that do often contain excess chemicals that are not best for our skins to absorb (parabens are common ingredient in these creams). Aloe is one of the best to relieve itching and irritation because it contains glycoproteins which help reduce inflammation upon contact.
What About Aloe for Internal Use?
Another common use for aloe internally is to heal the digestive tract, so if you’re interested in using aloe as a digestive aid, feel free to try it. It’s a well-known use of this plant and many people attest that it works wonders for constipation. Aloe is also incredibly alkaline so it may help reduce inflammation in the stomach, along with feed good bacteria in the digestive tract thanks to its high fiber content and high water content. Just be mindful of how you react and if it causes laxative properties, pain, cramps, or you simply don’t react to it well, reduce or eliminate the amount you ingest and use aloe topically instead. For help with digestion, try some diet-based tips instead.