Aloe vera …. you’ve heard of the plant before. Chances are you’ve even rubbed its famous gel on your skin to get rid of painful sunburns after a trip to the beach. But if you think that’s all aloe vera is good for, think again.
Ingesting the clear gel from the inside of an aloe vera leaf can have a major impact on your digestive tract. We’ll get to how in just a minute. But first, let’s take a look at the nutritional benefits.
Aloe vera contains key vitamins, minerals, enzymes and amino acids that are vital for our bodies to function properly.
7 Ways Aloe Vera Benefits Digestion
1) Anti-Inflammatory Properties
People who suffer from digestive issues often experience inflammation in the digestive tract. Since we know inflammation is the root cause of many illnesses, it’s important to incorporate anti-inflammatory foods into our diets. Drinking aloe vera juice has been shown to fight inflammation, soothe and relax the GI tract.
2) Helps Heal Leaky Gut
Aloe vera gel can help heal the lining of a damaged intestinal tract, healing and/or preventing leaky gut syndrome. This is crucial because when a person’s gut lining is damaged, toxins can enter the bloodstream. This can lead to system-wide inflammation and initiate an immune response in the body.
3) Relieves Constipation
Aloe vera is considered a laxative-acting food. The gel-filled plant increases intestinal water content, stimulates mucus secretion and contains enzymes that help the body break down food.
4) Promotes Regular Bowel Movements
Again, aloe vera contains enzymes that help the body break down food. Then the plant’s soothing effects help to easily move that food through the intestines, encouraging regular bowel movements.
Along with its rich nutrient content, aloe vera has antibacterial and anti-viral properties. For this reason, aloe vera helps rid the body of harmful toxins and food buildup.
Learn the dangers of toxic buildup by clicking here.
6) Encourages Good Gut Bacteria
If you’ve spent any time clicking around our Gut Health Project website, you know the importance of good gut bacteria (AKA probiotics). You also know in order for probiotics to flourish, they need to feed off prebiotics. Well, aloe vera is considered a prebiotic!
Learn more about the importance of prebiotics here.
7) Fights Heartburn
Drinking 1/2 a cup of aloe vera juice before eating a meal has been shown to help reduce acid reflux.
Aloe Juice Recipe
While aloe vera is available in a few forms (juice, pills and powders), one of the best ways to consume it is by drinking aloe vera juice.
*It’s important to note that you cannot go into a grocery store and pick up a bottle of aloe vera sunburn relief gel and drink it! Those products are loaded with chemicals and are toxic if ingested.
There are a number of companies that sell aloe vera juice, which you can buy at a health food store or online. You can also make it yourself, just purchase an edible aloe plant and follow this basic recipe (article continues below):
- Aloe vera should not be ingested in high doses because it can cause stomach cramps and diarrhea.
- Do not consume aloe vera if you’re pregnant and/or breastfeeding. There are reports of aloe vera causing miscarriage and birth defects.
- If you’re on any medications, consult with your doctor before drinking aloe vera juice.