Image via WikipediaThe leaves of the aloe vera herb has been used as herbal medicine for various ailments. Aloe contains slippery elements that ease burns and heal wounds. An aloe constituent, acemannan, stimulates production of macrophages in the body. Macrophages are disease-fighting white blood cells that engulf foreign elements in the blood, eating up viruses and dead cells to clean up the body's system. Another constituent, aloin, has been the subject of extensive clinical research into curing cancer.
Modern clinical research has shown that aloe is one of the best herbs for soothing skin and healing burns, rashes, frostbite, and severe wounds. It also is used to treat eczema, dandruff, acne, ringworm, gum disease, poison oak and poison ivy.
Aloe vera is also found in a number of creams and lotions for softening and moisturizing the skin. It works by inhibiting formation of tissue-injuring compounds that gather at the site of a skin injury. The plant contains chrysophanic acid, which is highly effective in healing abrasions.
Aside from the healing properties of aloe vera, it is also viewed as one of the most effective hair loss treatments. The sap of the aloe vera plant is applied directly to the scalp where the hair has thinned.
Aloe vera is also found in shampoos and conditioners. Continued use of these products will supposedly encourage hair growth and promote a healthy scalp.