10 Household Uses for Aloe Vera

Handy hints for using aloe vera gel as a natural alternative in your health and beauty routine.

| January/February 2016

  • Woman Cleaning her Teeth with Aloe Vera Gel
    Use aloe vera to treat bad breath and fight tooth decay and gum disease.
    Photo by Fotolia
  • Sliced Aloe Leaves
    Aloe is one of nature's wonders for skin health, and can be used for burns, fungal infections and even bad breath.
    Photo by Fotolia
  • Aloe Smoothie
    Try including aloe vera in a smoothie for a delicious healthful treat.
    Photo by Fotolia

  • Woman Cleaning her Teeth with Aloe Vera Gel
  • Sliced Aloe Leaves
  • Aloe Smoothie

Aloe vera gel is one of nature’s wonders for skin health and so much more. Keeping a low-maintenance aloe plant around the house is the easiest way to ensure a steady supply of the good stuff. Just slice a spiky leaf off the plant, then open the spear lengthwise to harvest the gel inside. If you are shopping for gel, look for 100 percent pure Aloe vera gel. Many products (especially green or blue formulas) have additives and preservatives.

1. Treat teeth: Naturally antifungal and antibacterial, aloe can help treat bad breath. Thanks to its anti-inflammatory b-sitosterol, which soothes acid indigestion—a common cause of bad breath—it can help kill bad bacteria, as well as fight tooth decay and gum disease. Dissolve 1/4 cup aloe gel in 1/2 cup water and drink to improve breath and oral health.

2. Soothe burned skin: Various studies have shown aloe to be useful in treating wounds and burns. Scoop aloe gel into an ice cube tray and freeze until hardened. To use, apply an ice cube to the affected area for about one minute, until skin starts to feel numb and ice cube begins to melt. To treat larger areas, such as a sunburn, apply the gel several times a day to keep skin hydrated and healing properly.

3. Banish bruises: Aloe’s soothing power can also be used to treat bruises. Apply aloe gel directly onto the bruise.



4. Heal athlete’s foot: Athlete’s foot, a common fungal infection, is another condition that antifungal, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory aloe can help tackle. Mix aloe gel with a few drops of tea tree essential oil, another powerful antifungal, to create a soothing ointment. Apply onto the affected area twice a day until the infection fully disappears.

5. Shaving cream: Combined with olive oil, aloe vera makes a great shaving gel. Mix 1 part olive oil with 3 parts aloe gel. Optionally, add a few drops of your favorite essential oil for fragrance. Mix well and use. Store the remaining mixture in a container with a tight lid, where it will keep for up to a week.



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