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  Latin Name Aloe vera
English Name Indian Aloe
Hindi Name Ghrit kumara
Part Used Leaf pulp

The Aloe vera plant has been known and used for centuries for its health, beauty, medicinal and skin care properties. There are over 250 species of aloe vera and only 5 to 6 types have medicinal uses. Aloe vera, known as kumari (means Virgin lady) in Ayurveda, is an evergreen perennial succulent. It is stem less or short-stemmed. Leaves are fleshy and thick with serrated margins on the leaves. These succulent ornamental plants because of their stiff, harsh and rugged habit are commonly grown in deserts and other dry situations.

 1Aloes have long been in use for a host of diseases, particularly connected with digestive system; they have also been used for wounds, burns and skin troubles, it is also mentioned as reputed purgative in the indigenous system of medicine. The cathartic properties of aloes are attributed to the presence of a mixture of glycosides called “Aloin”. 2Recently, a glycoprotein with antiallergic properties, called alprogen and novel anti-inflammatory compound, C-glucosyl chromone, has been isolated from Aloe vera gel.

3Aloe vera gel has been reported to have a protective effect against radiation damage to the skin. 4Its moisturizing effects has also been studied in treatment of dry skin associated with occupational exposure where aloe vera gel gloves improved the skin integrity, decreases appearance of fine wrinkle and decreases erythema. 5Anthraquinones present in latex of aloe are a potent laxative. It increases intestinal water content, stimulates mucus secretion and increases intestinal peristalsis.

6A study showed protective effect of Aloe vera gel against the polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) phenotype by restoring the ovarian steroid status, and altering key steroidogenic activity. PCOS is recognized as the most common endocrinopathy of women.


References:

 

1. The Wealth of India, Raw Materials, Vol. 1, 191-193, 2005
2. PMID: 8778246, J Nat Prod. 1996 May;59(5):541-3.
3. PMID: 7607925, Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 1995 Jul 15;32(4):1047-52
4. PMID: 12548256, Am J Infect Control. 2003 Feb;31(1):40-2.
5. PMID: 7920425, Biol Pharm Bull. 1994 May;17(5):651-3
6. PMID: 21731374, J Ayurveda Integr Med. 2010 Oct;1(4):273-9.


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