Fresh aloe vera gel is rich in enzymes and has antibacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties. It’s also a powerful anti-inflammatory, making it useful for soothing a number of digestive complaints.
Aloe vera juice can be helpful for acid reflux, for example, but ideally should be made from home-grown aloe with leaves that are 18 inches long before harvesting. Species that produce thick leaves are best.
Aloe also contains high amounts of an immune-stimulating polysaccharide, especially mannose, which has been shown to induce white blood cells to secrete interferon, tumor necrosis factor, and beneficial cytokines.
The benefits come from the inner gel of the plant, not the outer leaf. The inner gel can be combined with a lime or lemon and blended with a hand blender to make it more palatable when drinking. In addition, aloe vera has been found helpful for:
Ulcers, including those caused by H. pylori bacteria
Crohn’s disease, colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
Thanks to Allergy Specialist Clare Gale for this blog