You may have used the gel that is inside your aloe vera leaves to sooth a sunburn, but that same gel can be used in healthy recipes. Aloe vera will aid your digestive system when incorporated into your diet. Making your own aloe vera juice to add to salad dressing, yogurt, smoothies and other drinks can act as a catalysts to break down complex foods, helping your body assimilate nutrients more efficiently. In countries such as Japan, poached aloe vera cubes, which have a texture similar to grapes, are added to products like yogurt. Aloe vera can also be combined with other natural ingredients to create your own beauty products.
Aloe Vera Juice
Cut several leaves, at the base, from your aloe vera plant. With a sharp knife, carefully cut open the leaves along the edges of the leaf, fillet style. Open the leaf flat. Carefully scrape the clear gel from the inside of the leaf and put it in a jar that has a lid. When you harvest the gel from your aloe vera leaves, avoid gathering any of the yellow or green-colored fluid that is close to the outer part of the leaf. This yellow and green fluid is what causes diarrhea, where the clear gel in the center of the leaf will not. Continue to add the clear aloe vera gel to the jar until the jar is about 1/3 full, then fill the rest of the jar with cold water. Place the jar in your refrigerator overnight so it can infuse. You can start using the top half of the aloe vera juice in the jar the next day. As you use your juice, add more cold water to the jar, letting it set overnight again before using it. Store and keep this aloe vera juice in your refrigerator for one week.
Many people prefer a sweeter mixture for their aloe vera juice. To make a sweeter juice, harvest the gel from your leaves the same way, but place it in your blender and add the juice of three to five oranges or other citrus fruit. Blend these together for about two minutes, then put it in a lidded jar in your refrigerator overnight. Use this as is, or dilute it with cold water or fruit juice for a refreshing, healthy drink.
Poached Aloe Vera
Cut open two large aloe vera leaves from your plant. Carefully peel the outer layer of the leaf away from the inside gel, making sure you only have the clear gel left. Cut this clear gel into cubes the size of grapes. Add these cubes to a sauce pan that has 1 cup of sugar and the juice of one lime in it. Heat this combination on low-medium until the cubes have lost their slimy moisture and have firmed to the consistency of resilient grapes. Allow the cubes to cool, then store in an air-tight container in your refrigerator until you are ready to add these delicious, healthy cubes to your yogurt.
Aloe Vera Night Cream
Place in a blender equal amounts of aloe vera gel, peeled and chopped cucumber, and distilled water. Blend until the mixture is smooth. Store this night cream in your refrigerator for up to a week. To use this natural, healthy night cream, smooth it over your face at bedtime and leave it on overnight, rinsing it off with warm water in the morning. No matter what your skin type is, your skin will soon become soft, smooth and healthier.