Aloe Vera?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by moonwolf, Jan 18, 2005.

  1. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

    Sep 19, 2004
    This plant obviously has been around a long time and claim about the medicinal or healing properties from the substance this plant produces.

    Got any good stories or advice about how you've used aloe vera, whether good or bad. What forms do you use the aloe vera?
  2. EasyDay

    EasyDay Gimme a YAAAAY!

    Aug 28, 2004
    NC Arkansas
    Mom always kept an aloe vera plant growing in the kitchen window. She'd use it to treat burns. Some people consume it, but I'm not sure how they prepare it. It's so slimy... worse than boiled okra!

  3. goldenlady

    goldenlady Well-Known Member

    Sep 9, 2004
    Mid Michigan
    Years ago, my little boy jumped off our couch and fell against a radiant heat wood burning stove with his forearm. He left skin on the stove and had a large burn mark on his forearm. We lived way out in the country and DH was not at home and I had no car. I soaked his arm in ice water for about an hour - constantly changing the water - and then took a couple leaves from an aloe vera plant - opened them up and poured the sap on his arm. By then, DH had arrived home from my call and we took him immediately to doctor. After the sap from the plant was on his arm, it took away the pain and, although doctor turned up his nose at it, he had to admit it probably did the job. My son does not even have a scar on his arm. I always keep a plant around and my, now adult, children do the same.
  4. Jan Doling

    Jan Doling Well-Known Member

    May 21, 2004
    Zone 9b
    My grandma always had a plant by her door. It works wonders on burns, cuts, scrapes, etc. When my ex was too cheap to buy sun block and brought my youngest daughter home from his week end visitation, she was practically glowing in the dark. A friend broke a stem off her plant and rubbed the child's arms, back and face with the goo. The heat rose off her skin and in about 30 minutes the pain and glow had gone. She tanned instead of peeling.
  5. AnnaS

    AnnaS Well-Known Member

    Nov 29, 2003
    Verndale MN
    My doctor told me aloe vera was the best treatment for thawed frostbite.
  6. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    May 10, 2002
    I have found it to be no miracle, but it IS soothing. It takes some of the pain from a burn, some of the itch from a case of poison ivy, and so forth. I have a plant on my windowsill.

    I cannot imagine eating it, though. The sap tastes terrible.
  7. biolady

    biolady Member

    Nov 5, 2004
    my brother has really long hair and uses it to keep his hair soft and tangle free. I'm not sure how long he has been using it for, but his hair is very soft.
  8. januaries

    januaries Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2003
    I strongly prefer the raw leaves to any kind of processed aloe vera. Just split them open and rub the goo on a burn or injury. I have very fair skin that sunburns easily. I've found a couple of products that will help heal a sunburn just as well as fresh aloe, but they tend to be pricey. Aloe is practically free.

    In my experience, burns (any burn, not just sunburn) treated immediatley and repeatedly with aloe leaves will heal more quickly and with less scarring. Although aloe is a known moisturizer, I've found that it can have a drying effect as it evaporates. Because of this, it seems more beneficial to place opened aloe leaves directly on the burn and bandage lightly.

    I haven't noticed that it acts as an anesthetic or takes away the pain immediately, but it definitely makes it heal more quickly.

    As far as I'm concerned, you can't have too much aloe. I feel much more secure in a home that has a large pot of aloe in the window.
  9. culpeper

    culpeper Well-Known Member

    Nov 1, 2002
    IMO, it is an essential plant in every garden. One of its common names is First Aid Plant, and it's a very apt name indeed. Just grab a leaf and dab on some of the gel inside, and you can relieve a whole range of minor ailments - burns, sunburn, insect bites, wounds etc. It has been scientifically tested in the treatment of radiation burns with great success. Another common name for it is Burn Plant.

    I use it as a moisturiser after shaving my legs! Even use it on my face as a moisturiser if I've been out in the wind and sun (being female, I don't shave my face!). I've used it on post-surgery scars with great success. It definitely speeds up healing, and reduces the scarring.

    This was illustrated to me some years back in a rather startling way, when I was selling herbs. An elderly man approached, undoing his shirt and waving excitedly 'Look at this! You reckon herbs don't work? Just look at this!'. Well, everyone looked. He showed us a scar which ran down his entire torso. Apparently he'd had major heart surgery. His wife had persuaded him with some difficulty to try using Aloe Vera on the wound. He was reluctant, but decided to compromise, so he used the Aloe Vera on the upper half of the wound, and ordinary creams etc on the lower half. Sure enough, the difference was VERY noticeable. The upper section was just a thin, pale line you could hardly see. The bottom part looked like a zipper, still red and ugly.

    I sold a lot of Aloe Vera in the next few minutes!

    I don't recommend buying commercial products containing Aloe Vera. The amount of herb in them is usually very minimal, and Aloe Vera is one herb which works best, fresh.

    Some people are sensitive to it, so it's not for everyone, but if you have no reaction to it, slather it on! Use it on baby for nappy rash or cradle cap. (Test a small area first.)
  10. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jul 20, 2004
    I agree...yuck! I also keep it around for burns, bug bites and poison ivy.
  11. Cygnet

    Cygnet Well-Known Member Supporter

    Sep 13, 2004
    Middle of nowhere along the Rim, Arizona
    I used an aloe species for years to treat burns before learning it wasn't A. Vera -- another aloe -- works nicely, though. And much prettier flowers (spikes of red in the spring) than aloe vera and grows a bit faster. Aloe vera is apparently the "name" brand and I've got a generic. *LOL* It's been in the family for fifty years and I'm honestly not sure what the scientific name on this plant is, but everyone in the family has a patch of it.

    Most aloe species grow like weeds, BTW. If you're in an area with really hard freezes, they do nicely in the ground. You can expand the patch simply by yanking the "pups" -- offshoots -- up and poking them in the ground elsewhere. They'll take a light freeze (my garden gets down into the teens at night, briefly, in winter, with no damage to the aloes) but not a hard, extended freeze.