Fast food: Don't say you haven't tried aloe vera juice
Thursday 29 January 1998
You could, of course, be forgiven for thinking that Aloe Vera is just a body lotion or a shampoo ingredient. Those at the helm of food supplement fadism are now extolling the virtues of Aloe Vera juice or "mother nature's tonic". "Do I look more beautiful today? I've been drinking Aloe Vera juice," was overheard recently in a trendy West London agent's office. Those who believe it will turn them into overnight beauty queens are sad fashion victims, but what it can offer are some wide-ranging benefits, such as high calcium content, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties and overall assistance in strengthening the immune system and internal conditioning. Well, why else would you pay at least a fiver for half a litre or so?
As with most fads, it's by no means new, however new it may seem to the trendsetters. Historically, its use goes as far back as 1500BC. Alexander the Great's armies used Aloe internally to heal wounds and illness and it is attributed along with asses' milk as being one of Cleopatra's beauty secrets. More recent icons such as Goldie Hawn and Gwyneth Paltrow believe in its benefits enough to drink it every day.
A member of the Lily family, Aloe Vera plants look more like they should belong to the cactus family. Of the 200 different species of Aloe, only four are deemed suitable for human consumption, Aloe barbadensis miller being at the top. Unless you are a regular drinker of glue, the thick pulpy appearance and bitter taste are best mixed with fruit juic. Unfortunately the old adage of "if it tastes this bad it must be doing me some good" applies.
Music Why this music festival is still the place to spot the next big thing
Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Finland schools: Subjects scrapped and replaced with 'topics' as country reforms its education system
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
- 5 Zayn Malik quits One Direction: Hundreds of workers request compassionate leave following band member's exit
Jeremy Clarkson to host BBC's Have I Got News For You despite Top Gear exit
Kay Burley 'bias' against Ed Miliband prompts 130 complaints to Ofcom
A historian gave the most British look of despair when someone screwed up Richard III's birthday at his reburial
Zayn Malik already working on solo material, just days after quitting One Direction
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Germanwings plane crash live: Co-pilot Andreas Lubitz wanted to 'do something people would remember him for'