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What is aloe vera good for?

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Quick Answer

Aloe vera use is found to be possibly effective for cold sores, rashes on the mouth or exterior skin, psoriasis, and constipation, according to WebMD. Aloe vera can be ingested or applied topically depending upon the intended use and location of the problem.

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Full Answer

For medical use, the aloe vera plant comes in a gel or latex form. The aloe gel, which is found inside the top of the plant, is typically applied to the skin to treat sunburn, psoriasis, cold sores, frostbite and burns. It can also be taken orally in order to combat conditions such as osteoarthritis, ulcerative colitis, inflammation, itching and side effects of radiation treatment.

When used, the latex form can be taken orally for constipation, epilepsy, asthma, diabetes and hemorrhoids. Other problems aloe vera is used for include menstrual problems, bleeding, depression, colitis and bursitis, as reported by WebMD.

Consumers are cautioned about ingesting aloe vera latex because some of the chemicals contained in it might cause cancer, recommends WebMD. In addition to that, aloe vera latex is difficult for the kidneys to process, which could cause kidney disease or even death. Some evidence is contradictory as to the effectiveness of aloe vera in either form, so as with any treatment, use caution and consult a medical professional.

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