Does aloe really work?

Aloe is a cactus-like plant that grows in tropical climates around the world.  Aloe has been used in ancient medicine since the 16th century BC.  It was called the “Plant of Immortality” by ancient Egyptians.

What has Aloe been used for?

Toothpaste:  A study published in General Dentistry reported that Aloe is as effective as toothpaste in fighting cavities.  Aloe also contains compounds called anthraquinones, that can heal and reduce pain in the gums through an anti-inflammatory effect.

Laxative:  Aloe has a strong laxative effect.   Aloe is widely used in other countries for constipation.

Sunscreen:  Studies have shown that Aloe may protect the skin from UVB photodamage, and may even protect the skin in patients undergoing radiation treatment.  Aloe can help reduce the pain of sunburn.

Wounds:  Some studies have found that Aloe improves circulation and helps heal wounds.

Infections:  Aloe gel has properties that can help fight bacteria and fungi.

Keep in mind, that the studies on Aloe have been small and some studies have had contradictory results.  Also, some patients are allergic to Aloe, so a small test area should be performed prior to widespread use.



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