Natural Histroy Museum (n.d.). Seeds of Trade. Retrieved from: http://www.nhm.ac.uk/nature-online/life/plants-fungi/seeds-of-trade/page.dsml?section=crops&ref=aloe
Isslieb, A. (2014). Aloe Vera Juice. Retrieved from: http://simplyhealthjh.com/?page_id=225
Botanical Name: Aloe vera
Common name: Aloe
Family: Asphodeliaceae (Heinrich, Barnes, Gibbons & Williamson, 2012, p. 286)
Parts used: Leaf and its exudate gel (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 192)
- Polysaccharides including: Mannose-6- phosphate
- Gluco-mannans: also referred to as “acemannan” and marketed as “Carrisyn”
- Glycoproteins: including Alprogen, a glycoprotein with anti-allergic properties
- C-glucoyl chromone: anti-inflammatory compound
- Salicyclic acid
- Sterols (including beta-sitosterol)
(Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 192)
- Glycoprotein fraction: found to increase proliferation of human keratinocytes and increase epidermal growth factor in vitro (Braun & Cohen, 2010, pp. 192-193)
- b-sitosterol: appears to improve wound healing by stimulating angiogenesis and neovascularisation in vivo. (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 193)
- Allantonin has shown to stimulate epithelialisation (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 195)
- Acemannan has shown to stimulate machrophahe production of IL-1 And TNF associated with wound healing (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 195).
Two dihydroisocoumarines have been identified demonstrating ontioxidant properties (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 193)
- Immunostimulant (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 193)
In one study 400-800mg of acemannan/day significantly increased circulating monocytes in patients with HIV (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 197).
Gel has shown to reduce oxidation of arachidonic acid, prostaglandin synthesis and inflammation. One study in vivo found aloe to reduced leukocyte adhesion in a burn injury, thus reducing inflammation (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 194)
Anthraquinone constituent found in aloe latex is known to stimulate laxative activity however long term use of aloe latex has seen negative results and thus alternatives are preferred (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 194).
- Anti-ulcer (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 194)
Glucomannans slow carbohydrate absorption and postprandial insulin response up to 50% (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 195).
Antimicrobial (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 195)
Anti viral activity is due to aloe’s potential to interfere with DNA synthesis (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 195).
Polysaccharide fractions of aloe have shown to inhibit binding of benzopyrene in an animal study conducted on rat hepatocytes and preventing the formation of potential cancer-initiating benzopyrene-DNA adductions.
- Potential anti-cancer activity (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 197)
Various skin conditions including burns, wounds, radiation burns, ulcers, frostbite. Psoriasis and genital herpes (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 195).
Gastro-intestinal conditionals such as: irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis and some colonic bacterial activity (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 197).
Preparation & Dosage
Fresh plant gel prepared as a succus (internal use): 0.1-0.3g (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 175).
Gel: Gel is scraped and applied topically to afflicted area (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 175; Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 198).
Used as a laxative aloe may induce “gripping” pains and is contradicted for indication as a laxative in children (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 198).
Known hypersensitivity (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 198).
As a strong laxative aloe latex is contraindicated in pregnancy (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 198).
Not to be administed orally during lactation (Hoffmann, 1990, p. 175).
In one preliminary clinical trial, active constituent acemannan may enhance activity of the anti HIV medication AZT (Braun & Cohen, 2010, p. 197).
Braun, L., & Cohen, M. (2010). Herbs & Natural Supplements: An Evidence based Guide (3rd ed.). Chatswood NSW: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier.
Heinrich, M., Barnes, J., Gibbons, S., & Williamson, E. (2012). Fundamentals of Pharmacognosy and Phytotherapy (2nd ed.). Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier.
Hoffmann, D. (1990). Holistic Herbal. London: Thorsons