Over the last two or three decades, much has been written about aloe and its reported natural healing abilities. However, the vast majority of scientific trials that were carried out were, firstly in the USA using the Aloe vera species and secondly predominantly related to the aloe’s topical use to soothe and heal skin ailments. Only much more recently has sufficient anecdotal evidence become available, to persuade even the most skeptical of consumers that aloe in general – and Aloe ferox in particular – has incredible natural healing powers when consumed.
Aloe\’s most beneficial property is its abundance of both simple and complex natural sugars. “Glyconutrients” is a word which is being used extensively in the health and wellness industry at present. Glyconutrients describe a group of eight natural, simple sugars which are essential in one\’s diet to ensure effective cell-to-cell communication, which enables the body to heal itself. In nature, these sugars are almost exclusively found in fruit and vegetables which have ripened on the plant. These days, the majority of fruit and vegetables are artificially ripened, meaning glyconutrients are lacking in most people\’s diets. The fact that several of these sugars are found in the aloe plant goes some way to explain the “mythical magic” of aloe products, and the reason for the vast amount of anecdotal evidence which refers to it\’s “natural healing power”.
different aloe plants
There are more than 400 different species of aloe plants in the world – Aloe vera is one and the South African Aloe ferox is another. These two specific aloe species are at the forefront of all the trials which have been carried out to this day. The Aloe arborescence, which also grows in wild abundance in South Africa, is also purported to have similar medical properties to Aloe vera and Aloe ferox. However, due to its small leaves it has not proven to be commercially viable to pursue the idea of processing this plant.