May 15, 2019
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There's some evidence that aloe can help heal some types of wounds and ease symptoms of some conditions. But that doesn't mean that it is always beneficial. Just like any other natural remedy, there can be side effects.
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*-- Pros and Cons of Using Aloe --*
Aloe vera is a time-honored treatment. Alexander the Great used the clear gel-like sap in the middle of its leaves to heal his wounded soldiers’ wounds. And while there’s some evidence it can help some types of wounds, it may delay healing in others. Talk to your doctor about whether aloe products are right for your injury.
One of the most common uses for aloe is burns. A number of studies show that aloe ointments and creams can help burns, including sunburns, heal more quickly. Some substances in the aloe ease swelling and speed up healing, and others help your body repair the skin.
There still needs to be more science to back this one up, but some research shows aloe might help slow the growth of the virus that cause cold sores. Aloe extract cream may also help cold sores heal faster.
Aloe works as a laxative if you swallow it. That is, it may make you poop if you haven’t been able to go. But it can cause serious stomach cramps, diarrhea, and other unpleasant symptoms, and the FDA says there isn’t enough research to be sure it’s safe.
Aloe Effects That You Want to Avoid
When taken orally, just a gram a day could shut down your kidneys. You might have a bad reaction to aloe if you’re allergic to garlic, onions, tulips, or other members of the Liliaceae family.
Creams and gels are mostly OK, but the oral form can change how some of your medication works, especially diuretics, digoxin (Lanoxin) for heart issues, blood thinners like warfarin (Coumadin), and diabetes meds.
Remember that aloe vera is a dietary supplement, not a regulated drug. That means it’s hard to know exactly what’s in any aloe product. Tell your doctor about all supplements and medications you take, including aloe.
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