The aloe vera plant is considered to be a miracle plant because of its numerous curative and healing benefits. It is a succulent plant and part of the lily family (Liliaceae), the same family that garlic and onions belong to. Different parts of the plant are used for different purposes and aloe vera has both internal and external applications. Having your very own aloe vera plant can be handy whenever needed besides it is the perfect easy-to-look-after plant for newbies at gardening! Here are the top benefits of growing aloe vera plant:
HELPS WITH DIGESTION
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 diarrhoea, 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.
IMPROVES INDOOR AIR QUALITY
This easy-to-grow, sun-loving succulent helps clear formaldehyde and benzene, which can be a byproduct of chemical-based cleaners, paints and more. One of the reasons it’s such a good air purifying plant is that, unlike most plants, it actually releases oxygen and absorbs carbon dioxide at night. Aloe is a smart choice for a sunny kitchen window.
IMPROVES SKIN HEALTH
Aloe vera is one of the natural herbs commonly used in skin care products. It soothes the skin, hydrates it, nourishes it and accelerates the regeneration of new skin tissue. By applying fresh aloe vera gel on your face, you can enjoy well moisturized, glowing and flawless skin. In addition, aloe vera can be used to treat sunburned skin, blisters, insect bites, allergic reactions, minor burns, inflammations and more. Even people who have sensitive skin can use aloe vera without any problem.
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.
ENHANCE NATURAL BEAUTY
It’s said that the beautiful Egyptian queen Cleopatra used aloe vera on her skin daily. Aloe vera can be used in a variety of ways in your personal hygiene and beauty regimen. It’s a great skin refresher and hair moisturizer. You can use the gel straight from the plant onto your skin or you mix up a homemade moisturizer with it. To make an aloe vera moisturizer, mix 1/2 tsp or so of the gel with 1 Tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil. Spread an even layer on your face and hair and rinse off. Leftover moisturizer can be stored in a covered container in the fridge for about five days.
LOWER BLOOD SUGAR
Aloe vera has sometimes been used as a traditional diabetes remedy. It is said to enhance insulin sensitivity and help improve blood sugar management. Several animal and human studies in type 2 diabetics have actually found promising results from consuming Aloe vera extract.
TIPS FOR PLANTING AND TAKING CARE OF YOUR ALOE VERA PLANT:
- Plant in wide containers with a well-draining potting mix, such as for cacti/succulents.
- Place in indirect sunlight or artificial light.
- Water aloe deeply but then allow the soil to dry at least 1 to 2 inches deep between waterings, in order to discourage rot; water even less in winter.
- Aloe plants produce offsets or plantlets or “babies” that can be removed to produce an entirely new plant. Knock your Aloe out of its pot and find where the offsets are attached. Sever them from the mother plant with a knife. Allow the cuts on the offsets and the mother plant to callus over for a day or two. Pot them in a standard potting mix. Put in a sunny location. Wait a week to water and keep the soil on the dry side.
- If it has no roots, let it callus over, place the cut/broken end ON the soil, and support it with top dressing. DO NOT WATER IT-it has no roots, so watering the soil will likely cause rot. Instead, mist it every few days. Roots should start forming within a month. When growth is evident, it can be watered.