phytochemicals Phytochemicals
 
 

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Aloe vera

Aloe vera

Aloe vera

What is aloe vera?

Aloe vera is a stemless plant with rosettes of very thick fleshy leaves. The aloe vera flowers are yellow or red clusters which are formed on long stems.

Parts used

Mainly the gel which is found in the central parts of the aloe vera leaves is used. When collecting the gel care should be taken to remove the green coloured gel close to the skin, because this contains the bitter substance aloin. The process of harvesting aloe vera gel is called filleting. To obtain the best quality this filleting should be done by hand.
When the leaves of the aloe vera are cut, li quid exudes from the wounds. This aloin rich liquid is dried and harvested, to obtain curacao aloe.

Phytochemicals

These are typical phytochemicals found in aloe vera: aloin, glucommannans, salicylic acid, .

Benefits of aloe vera

Curacao aloes, which is the aloin rich, acts as laxative and is used against constipation and as a bitter tonic.
The clear gel made from aloe vera is used in cosmetics and the food industry for its health promoting properties. Aloe vera is moistens the skin. Aloe vera is used to treat infections and burns and is said to improve the immune system and to lower cholesterol.

Other facts

Aloe vera originates form North Africa. Aloe vera is now planted all warm climates of the world for commercial purposes. The first written reference of aloe vera is an ancient Egyptian papyrus, which dates back to 3500 BC. Aloe vera has been used for centuries in China and India. Legend suggests that Aristotle convinced Alexander the Great to capture the island of Socotra in the Indian Ocean for its supply of aloe vera to heal wounded soldiers.

Other names

Aloe, aloe vulgaris, alwat, barbados aloe, curaoa aloe, hsiang tan, medicinal aloe, miracle plant.


 
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