What makes a food a superfood or a fruit a super fruit? The answer is simple – its nutrients.
Vitamin C makes orange a great fruit, curcumin the active ingredient in turmeric makes turmeric a super herb. Where does aloe vera stand in this regard?
We all know aloe vera has so many health benefits.
Though not all have been extensively researched by today’s medical science but demonstrated through actual usage and experience.
What makes aloe vera so special? What is its nutritional profile? Let’s have a look.
Aloe vera nutrient list
Aloe vera is known to have more than 75 active nutrients which make it very unique.
It is very rare for a single plant to have so many nutrients.
Aloe vera has vitamins, minerals, amino acids, sugars, enzymes, etc. which makes it a powerhouse.
Some more details about nutrients present in aloe vera are:
Vitamins: Vitamins are organic substances which are needed by our body to properly function.
There are several types of vitamins and each has a role to play.
Aloe vera is rich in many vitamins including Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E – all these are anti-oxidants.
It also has other vitamins such as Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin 6, folic acid and choline. Studies also suggest that aloe vera also improves the bioavailability of vitamins C and B(12).
Minerals: As vitamins are organic substance needed by our body, minerals are inorganic ones. Aloe vera is rich in several minerals which makes it unique.
The minerals are – calcium, chromium, magnesium, manganese, potassium, zinc, sodium, chlorine, etc.
Enzymes: Without enzymes, our cells will stop working. Enzymes act as a catalyst and increase the rate of cell reactions which otherwise may take decades or more to complete!
Aloe vera is rich in several enzymes – Oxidase, Amylase, Catalase, Lipase, Bradykininase, Alkaline Phosphatase, carboxypeptidase, aliiase, cellulose, peroxidase.
Anthraquinones: These are naturally occurring aromatic organic compounds which aid in digestion and also known to have antibacterial and antiviral properties.
Aloe vera has 12 Anthraquinones including – Emodin, aloin, Resistannol, Anthranol, Aloetic Acid, Isobarbaloin, etc.
Sugars: Aloe vera is rich in monosaccharides and polysaccharides. These are derived from the mucilage layer of aloe vera leaf. These include - mannose-6-phosphate, Acemannan, alprogen, Aldopentose, etc.
Fatty acids: Fatty acids present in aloe vera are cholesterol, campesterol, β-sisosterol and lupeol. These are known to have anti-inflammatory benefits.
Hormones: Hormones are chemicals released by cells to stimulate other body parts, for example, thyroid gland produces growth hormone.
Plant hormones are known to stimulate human cells and thus can prove to be beneficial. Plant hormones Auxins and gibberellins found in aloe vera are believed to provide anti-inflammatory benefits.
Amino acids: Aloe vera is very rich in a variety of amino acids. It, in fact, has 20 of the required 22 amino acids in it.
More importantly, it possesses 7 of the 8 essential amino acids. Amino acids present in aloe vera include – Lysine, Valine, Leucine, Proline, Alanin, Histidine, Isoleucine, Tyrosine, Threonine, Glycine, Phenylalanine, Methionine, Histidine, Arginine, Aspartic acid, Glutamic acid, etc.
Other important constituents: Aloe vera also has Salicylic acid (anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial), Lignins, Beta-sitosterol, etc.
As you can see the list of nutrients in aloe vera is very long.
I have not even mentioned all of the above but the most important ones. You can now just imagine the reason why aloe vera is known as a miracle plant by some.