Aloe vera is one of the most aesthetically pleasing and useful plants you will ever come across in your garden. It is super low on maintenance which is great for beginners, but what really impresses us about the plant is how versatile it is! The fact, that you can center your whole skin and hair care routine around this gorgeous gel, is reason enough to have one of these beautiful succulents brightening up your home garden. Let us learn a little bit more about this wonder plant.
What is Aloe Vera?
Aloe Vera is a succulent plant from the genus Aloe that has more than 550 species of flowering succulent plants. The plant is stemless or very short-stemmed with thick, fleshy leaves that fan out from the center. Succulent plants store water in their enlarged fleshy leaves, stems and roots, and this is what allows them to survive in dry climates. The edges of the leaves are serrated with short teeth.
Fact:‘Vera’ means “true”, and that is why Aloe Vera is the most popular species of the entire genus due to its cosmetic and medical applications.
Aloe Vera Uses
As per healthline, Aloe Vera
- Is a safe and gentle remedy for heartburn due to the plant’s low toxicity.
- Can act as a safe and effective alternative to chemical-based mouthwashes.
- Seems to help in lowering your blood sugar levels and lowering cholesterol levels.
- Keeps keep your skin clear and hydrated.
- Helps in hair care by reducing dandruff and skin burns.
- Helps in balancing the stomach’s pH levels and promotes healthy bacteria growth.
How much aloe vera should you use?
Most of the Creams and gels available over the counter contain aloe Vera that varies in dosage. Some creams for minor burns may have just 0.5% aloe Vera content whereas some others may contain as much as 60-70% aloe Vera content. As an oral supplement also, aloe has no set dose and concentration levels. Generally aloe Vera products contain Preservatives and various levels of processing are done to dilute its concentration especially for oral usage.
High oral doses of aloe vera can be dangerous and hence you should consult your doctor for advice on how and how much to use aloe vera.
Why to grow Aloe at Home and How to Care for your Aloe?
Aloe Vera is a natural substance that contains almost 200 biological active molecules. However the biological activity degrades rapidly after harvest unless the Aloe is stabilized within two hours. That’s why we recommend using fresh aloe vera for your skin and hair care. Since It is super low on maintenance, you may like to garden the same in your balcony and benefit from fresh aloe. This will also save you a lot of money as well. If you want your aloe vera to thrive and not just survive, here are a few tips that will help you keep the plant in the pink – or rather, green – of health!
Tips to take care for your Aloe Vara at Home
- Place in bright, indirect sunlight because direct sunlight dries out the plant too much and the leaves turn an unpleasant yellow.
- Aloe vera flourishes in temperatures between 13 and 27 degrees. Most homes have the ideal weather for this beautiful succulent. With Indian winters, it is better to keep them inside when the nights are too cold.
- You must water your aloe vera plants deeply, but not too often. Once in every 3 weeks is ideal, and it should be even more infrequent during the winters. Do not let your aloe vera plant sit in water. The soil must be moist, but there should be a drainage hole at the bottom of the pot to let the excess water go, or else the plant will rot.
- When trimming your aloe vera plant, do not throw the offsets. You can use them to propagate their own plant. Make sure there is at least an inch of stem, keep it out of the soil in indirect sunlight till a callous form on the cut, put it in a pot with well-draining potting mix and water it after a week.
How to make Aloe Gel Miracle at Home
Although there may be little clinical evidence to show the benefits of aloe Vera gel in cosmetics and medicine, history tells us a whole other story. The Ancient Greeks and Romans used Aloe Vera to soothe their wounds after battles. In the Middle Ages, the resinous yellow liquid found inside the leaves was used as a purgative. Unprocessed aloe has aloin, which functions as a natural laxative, whereas processed aloe Vera juice (which is also used to ease and improve digestion) does not contain high doses of aloin.
To make full use of aloe Vera’s magical healing properties, remove a mature leaf from the plant and slice it along its length. Squeeze out the gel, and use it as it is to treat sunburn and cold sores, or make a nice spa day out of it with some DIY face masks and hair treatments. Here are two that you can use for the upcoming weekend!
However we will not recommend using homemade Aloe Vera gel for any oral usage in any manner.
How cool is this magical succulent? That one gel can help you soothe sunburns, moisturize your hair, nourish your skin and ease your digestion. Stay tuned to the GetBodyCare blog for more such do-it-yourself tips and healthy body!