Saturday, April 28, 2012


Something which has not enjoyed its legitimate position in the fraternity of medicinal herbs is the modest Aloe Vera. It has been used for centuries in India for its curative properties to heal burns, wounds, acne, eczema and many other skin problems. There was a time when every household in India grew it in pots or beds in their yards; both as an ornamental plant and as an herb. I remember seeing broken clay water pitchers, standing on their necks, being used to grow this wondrous plant. In the event of some injury or burn there was no doctor to go to but the potted physician was always available near at hand and its gel was used as a dressing.

Aloe Vera is a succulent plant with long thick leaves and grows fast in tropical climate of North India. Though it had remained in oblivion for long but now its medicinal properties have been recognized and researches are being undertaken to comprehend its  composition and its value as an herbal cure for many ailments.

It is especially advantageous for treating and repairing skin damage, scarring, sunburn and aging skin conditions. It promotes natural healing and has no side effects. And its gel is applied to reduce chafing, itching and for its cooling effect. At present when alternative medical systems to treat diseases are being given due importance, Aloe Vera's popularity is in the ascendancy. Shop isles are filled with products containing Aloe Vera as one of the constituents. It is being used widely by cosmetics manufacturing companies. The branded body lotions, face creams, moisturizers, body soaps, baby wipes, facial tissues and hand washes, all profess to contain Aloe.

However, these fancy products cost a lot. In fact you can grow Aloe at home. Just plant one stalk, with roots and in a short period of time it will multiply. The simplest way to use it is to cut off (with a knife) a leaf from the base, trim its sides to remove prickles and split it into halves exposing the flesh. Rub the halves one by one on your skin, starting from face and going down to your feet, heels and toes before taking bath. Its watery gel tightens the skin and repairs cells with its nutrients and minerals. It leaves the skin soft and silky. Its regular use can do wonders to improve the tone and texture of the skin. This apart, scoop the flesh and store it in an air tight container in the fridge to be used when needed.

Its juice is available here in Ayurvedic stores which can be taken orally first thing in the morning by diluting it with water for stimulating digestive system and detoxifying the body. (People taking other medications should consult their doctor).

My mother was very particular about growing aloe in the kitchen garden. She used to cook its chunks with the peel on like any other vegetable for stomach disorders.

It is known to work as a hair tonic also. Put its flesh in the blender to liquefy it and fill bottles and keep them in the fridge. About an hour before hair bath, rub the liquid gently in hair partings and wait for it to work on your scalp. It lubricates the hair roots and helps in hair growth by controlling dandruff and dryness. But a regimen has to be followed regularly for sustained results.

Aloe Vera is nature’s free gift with marvellous health benefits.
courtesy: Google images
Friends, your comments'll be appreciated.


  1. Very useful info. Long live aloevera - a lowly plant worth a lot.

  2. Nice post Uppalji.

    Aloe vera is the sought after stuff now. Many products are screaming about aloe vera. There are big can of potions with aloe vera,which some of my friends drink.

    Looks like it has come to stay.

  3. Thanks Pattu,it is the new miracle herb.I,ve it in the pot as well as in the ground.I rub the gel on skin and use it on scalp before hair bath.

  4. Very useful post..I too have a aloe vera plant at home.