Aloe Vera is a Plant but it’s NOT Food

WARNING: ALOE VERA IS NOT RECOMMENDED AS BEVERAGE OR SUPPLEMENT, even though it has recently been promoted as a health beverage and supplement. It is used as a topical substance for sunburn and skin care, and should be considered for EXTERNAL USE ONLY.

Aloe vera is a succulent plant species of the genus Aloe. It originates from the Arabian Peninsula but grows wild in tropical climates around the world and is cultivated for agricultural and medicinal uses. The species is also used for decorative purposes and grows successfully indoors as a potted plant. It is widely used for treating sunburns, acne, and dry skin. It has been promoted as an alkaline food choice, liver tonic, remedy for constipation, treatment for dehydration, source of vitamins B, C, E, B12 and folic acid, remedy for heartburn, gastric ulcers, IBS, and ulcerative colitis.

Here are some reasons why you should avoid taking aloe vera (savila) internally
  • A 2013 study found that aloe vera whole-leaf extract increased the risk of colon cancer in rats.
  • Aloe vera juice can cause diarrhea and cramping
  • Aloe vera leaf extract has been listed as a chemical “known to the state (California) to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity.”
  • It interacts with certain medications
  • It can cause excessive bleeding during surgery

If, in spite of the risks, you decide to drink aloe vera juice or use it internally in any way, look for the following statements on the label: purified, decolorized, organic, safety tested.