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Hello, dear viewer, and thank you for visiting my blog! I am a dedicated (and certified) Food Coach and Personal Trainer with a very individual attitude to coaching. I search to look beyond people's health issues and modify their lifestyles so that they can live a healthier life, increase vitality and longevity. Recently as a strong believer in natural healing I have published two books on Ayurveda and how to use Ayurveda lifestyle and food at home. Further, I am very much into TCM and the concept of original Chinese Food, especially after my recent stay in China. I am striving to become a Yoga expert through intense training and am practicing some kind of exercise every single day. My second blog http://thrumyeyes-kat.blogspot.com/ is dedicated to my passion to capture the world with my camera and create my own world like that. Everything you will find on these pages about nutrition and exercising is authentic and self-tested. Enjoy and don't forget to send me your comments, which are always welcome in my attempt to meet your expectations even better!

Monday, 13 January 2014

Aloe Vera - A pharmacy in a flowerpot

Dear readers,

two years ago in my beautiful garden in Italy on the sunniest spot I could find I planted my first agave. It was a small baby coming from the far South of Italy. In the meantime at least my dogs can dwell in its shadow. As this agave looked a bit lonely, I planted another one next to it plus cacti of various sizes. Something was still missing. Ah, right, I always need something nutritious! So my Mum last summer brought a small aloe vera plant, a green, cactus-like plant at first glance, which is called the "queen of herbs " and rightly so. 

It is also called "plant of immortality". Its healing powers internally and externally are exemplary. About 160 medicinal active substances have been detected to date . The plant belongs to the genus of desert lilies, similar to the American agave and probably originates from Africa. The oldest known mention of aloe can be found on more than 6000 year old pottery shards from Babylonia.

Later, in the wake of Arab traders and armies the aloe came to India and became an integral part of Ayurvedic medicine. From here she began her journey to China and through the Arabs also came to Spain and other European countries, as well as to the Native Americans.

Extraordinary with this plant, which is among the so-called succulents (special water-storing plants in the tropics and subtropics) is its protective properties against the evaporation of moisture. When a leaf is injured, the wound heals almost immediately. It was concluded that these skills had to minister even human skin.

Among more than 300 different species, it is the "true Aloe" (Aloe Barbadensis Miller), who is most digestible for human beings. 

The aloe is a complete food in addition to its skin healing properties and contains numerous life-giving nutrients such as vitamins , amino acids , mineral salts , enzymes and digestive enzymes. About 400 remedial substances can be obtained from the sap of aloe for the human organism. Amongst them the Acemannan, which is also found in ginseng and shitake mushrooms and is known for its immune-stimulating, anti-bacterial and antifungal properties and therefore plays an important role in cancer treatment. Likewise, it alkalizes, detoxifies and purifies the body from inside. Aloe has a positive effect on gut flora, on blood sugar and blood fat levels and acts immunogenic. For general alkalization a 2-month treatment is recommended.

Aloe Vera is a valuable food supplement. Used externally, aloe gel helps in wound healing, burns, sunburn and stretch marks. Similarly, in different skin diseases. The gel tightens the skin and moisturizes it deeply.

Since the aloe plant is very frugal, one can easily keep it at home on the windowsill. It is happy with enough light and sometimes a little water. Carefully, you can cut one of the outer leaves when needed and remove a little gel for external use. If you want to consume the fresh gel, you have to remove the outer leaf skin. It is recommended to purchase a ca. 4 -year-old plant. The scientific community disagrees on whether certain healing substances mature only after 3-5 years.

Like in any treatment with natural remedies also the benefits of aloe need their time

The pure gel itself has no attractive taste. Therefore, it is usually mixed. Here your imagination knows no boundaries. Whether in fruit or vegetable juices or teas - go for it.

For an energy drink for example, mix Aloe gel with honey (in about equal amounts) and a little rum in a kitchen blender and store it sealed in a refrigerator. Morning, noon and evening you can take 1 tbsp on an empty stomach.

As with all foods from nature the consumption of Aloe Vera in a non-thoughtful way can lead to side effects.
The bitter substances of Aloe Vera - the Aloine - in internal application leads to disturbances in the gut and abdomen, which is why they are banned in edible aloe vera products. You should check the products that you buy accordingly. At home, the Aloine is easy to avoid: it is the yellow liquid that you find when you open the leaf. Please wash it off completely , then you will get the pure gel.

Also, in the beginning of the consumption some unpleasant , but completely harmless "Aloe Vera side effects" can occur, because the aloe does not only supply the body with over 250 nutrients and vital substances, but also with a lot of sun energy that the aloe itself stores in the years of its growth. Thus, the Aloe regulates the body, which was even demonstrated in blood tests.

So, should the side effects be uncomfortable , reduce the daily recommended intake of 60 to 100 ml aloe gel and then increase it slowly to allow your body to get used to this new pleasant energy boost.

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