I’m sure almost everyone out there has heard about aloe vera and its multiple uses for general health and beauty. But did you know that using aloe vera without getting rid of its poisonous and toxic sap can be harmful?
Well, here’s what you need to know – aloe vera has thick and fleshy leaves with serrated margins having white teeth/spike like structures around the sides. The aloe vera leaf consists of three main parts: the outer rind (hard protective layer), the middle latex (consisting of ‘aloin’, a yellowish sap) and the inner mucilaginous gel (pulp) which is transparent by nature.
What makes the aloin harmful to the body when consumed?
Aloin is a natural chemical found in the skin of the aloe vera leaf and should be preferably removed before making the juice as it is very bitter by nature and known to have laxative properties. Aloin can also be responsible for abdominal cramps or diarrhea, in some people, if consumed in large quantities. Therefore, it is better to avoid consumption of aloin by getting rid of it before using the aloe vera pulp.
How does aloe vera benefit your health and beauty?
Consuming aloe vera juice can help your body keep away from dehydration. Aloe vera also contains enzymes which help breakdown the sugars and fats and helps aid digestion in a smooth manner. Aloe vera juice helps people suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Drinking aloe vera juice could help boost your body metabolism (helpful to increase the number of calories you burn) and help promote weight loss or at least maintain a healthy weight, as it contains antioxidants that will help improve your digestion and helps fight gastric trouble or heartburn by controlling the secretion of acid in your stomach. Consumption of aloe vera juice can also have a laxative effect on the bowels.
Consuming aloe vera juice could help reduce one’s cholesterol levels by reducing the LDL (low-density lipoproteins) levels, also known as bad cholesterol and also the levels of triglycerides, in turn boosting HDL (high-density lipoproteins) levels, also known as good cholesterol.
A lot of people suffer from skin problems like rash or acne. Drinking of aloe vera juice can act as an anti-acne medicine. It contains vitamin C and vitamin E which are helpful to keep one’s skin healthy and radiant.
How to remove the aloin from the latex of the aloe vera leaf?
Step 1: Wash your aloe vera leaf (use only edible aloe vera leaf) under running water thoroughly, to get rid of any impurities. Then, cut off around half inch to one inch from the bottom or base of the aloe vera leaf.
Step 2: Place the leaf with the cut side facing downwards, into a glass jug or glass tumbler and fill it with water until the cut portion is properly submerged in the water and leave it for 10 minutes in the water.
Step 3: Pat dry it with a tissue or clean cloth and then you can remove the teeth like structures from the sides of the leaf using a vegetable peeler or a knife.
Step 4: Then using the peeler or a knife, peel off the outer rind of the leaf and scrape out the gel/flesh using a spoon.
How to make fresh aloe vera gel/pulp at home?
Using the freshly removed flesh or pulp of the aloe vera leaf, add it into a mixer blender and grind it until it becomes a smooth liquid.
To store: You can pour the freshly made aloe vera gel into an ice tray and freeze until future use, for up to six months. Before you require to use this gel/pulp, you can thaw/defrost it half an hour in advance and then use it for consumption or even in beauty remedies.