For thousands of years, people from around the world have used aloe vera for everything from soothing sunburn to oral wounds! In recent years, research has suggested that the plant may boast even more health benefits thanks to the properties and compounds found in its leaves. A South Korean study reports that aloe vera supports the immune system.  Another study has indicated that aloe vera can fight harmful organisms in the digestive tract. 
Aloe vera is great for flushing out toxins and waste from the digestive tract , which in turn helps the body to absorb nutrients more effectively. This also supports circulation and gets more oxygen-rich blood to cells throughout the body. Today, we’ll look at how aloe vera supports heart health.
Aloe Vera and HDL Cholesterol
HDL, also known as high-density lipoprotein or “good” cholesterol is one of the two kinds of cholesterol in your blood. The sentiment is typically that the higher your HDL levels are, the better your health because HDL cholesterol travels through your blood collecting unused LDL (low-density lipoprotein – “bad” cholesterol) molecules before they become damaged by free radicals. These unused LDL molecules can damage arteries and ultimately harm your heart. Cutting them off at the pass helps protect your heart before there’s an issue. 
In one study, 5,000 patients added aloe vera and psyllium seed to their diets. In all cases, HDL cholesterol improved and researchers noted that diabetics enjoyed the most improvement.  Keep in mind that’s a test sampling with controlled parameters and you shouldn’t expect the same results, but it’s interesting news nonetheless.
Aloe Vera and LDL Cholesterol and Triglycerides
Despite having been dubbed “bad” cholesterol, every cell in your body require some LDL cholesterol. The problem is that too much LDL cholesterol in a person’s system can clog arteries and lead to heart attack or stroke. A major concern is the combination of high LDL cholesterol and too many triglycerides. Triglycerides, which are fat cells that store energy, actually make up the primary type of fat in your body.  High levels of triglycerides in your blood means that you aren’t actually burning all that excess energy, which turns into fat. Triglyceride levels under 150 mg/dL are considered normal, with 200 mg/dL considered high. Anything from 150 – 199 mg/dL is borderline high and anything about 500 mg/dL is extremely high.  Some research has shown aloe vera to be good nutrition for encouraging normal LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels. 
Aloe Vera and Blood Sugar
Recent studies have shown that aloe vera supported normal blood sugar in diabetic mice.  Researchers reported that 5 active compounds in aloe vera reduced fasting blood sugar levels in mice up to 64% when consumed for 28 days. The same mice showed about a 15% decrease in the A1C blood sugar levels.  This is significant because high blood sugar increases the presence of free radicals in the blood. It also increases damage to LDL cholesterol, which can lead to arterial attacks and even the development of heart disease.
Supplementing Your Diet with Aloe Vera
Beyond heart health, research indicates aloe vera supports the immune system, digestion, is soothing, protects you from UV and gamma radiation, among other things. Plus, it’s rich in antioxidants, vitamins A, C, and E and important minerals like selenium, potassium, magnesium and zinc. And it offers vegetarians and vegans an excellent way to get 20 of the 22 amino acids the human body needs. 
You can add aloe and its nutrients to your diet with aloe juice but be aware you should avoid any product that contains aloin. This is found in the outer part of the aloe vera leaf and is actually an incredibly harsh laxative. If a label says “outer leaf” or “whole leaf”, you can count on encountering aloin.
If you are looking to enjoy aloe vera’s health benefits, acemannan is the key ingredient to seek out. Acemannan is a polysaccharide and is generally the key property that gives aloe vera its beneficial properties. Aloe Fuzion™, an all natural capsule product made from 100% pure organic inner leaf aloe vera powder, features the highest level of acemannan content on the market. This product is also completely aloin free.
Natural Ways to Encourage Heart Health
Take care of yourself! Other tips include…
- Exercise Regularly: Just like any other muscle, your heart needs exercise. Just be careful not to overdo it.
- Healthy Diet: Your body is made to prosper and take care of itself, but its ability to do so truly begins with the foods you consume. I recommend natural, organic options when possible!
- Monitor Cholesterol: It’s important to keep tabs on what’s happening within your body. Understanding this will help you keep your body running in top shape.
- Blood Pressure: Use diet and exercise to maintain a healthy blood pressure. You can monitor this with convenient at-home kits or in just about any drugstore.
- Smoking: Not smoking sounds like a no-brainer for any health conscious person, but unfortunately smoking is a big part of many people’s lives.
- Manage Stress: Stress is actually caused by a hormonal response that the body creates. Negatives emotions, like stress and anger, can have a tremendously negative impact on the body. Keep these in check with breathing exercises and meditation – even if only for a few minutes each day.
- Supplements: Even the healthiest diets can fall short of providing key vitamins and minerals at times. Taking appropriate supplements can make a huge difference in your nutrition and, as a by-product, in your overall wellbeing.
When it comes to your health, aloe vera’s incredible nutrient density makes it an ideal addition to your diet. The vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and plant nutrients like acemannan support heart health and offer many other health benefits.
Have you ever tried any aloe vera products or supplements? We’d love to hear about it! Please share your experience in the comments below.
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- Medline Plus. “Measuring Cholesterol Levels.” Summer 2012 Issue: Page 6-7.
Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.