Yvonne Salcido, M.H.

Almost anyone you talk to is familiar with the aloe vera plant. This is a plant that has been used historically throughout the ages for healing. Before I became a master herbalist, I had a neighbor who was a podiatrist. He mentioned one day that if any of my children ever get burned I could just run over and cut all the aloe vera I wanted out of his yard. I asked, “How do you use it?” He explained how you cut a leaf off, rinse it off and then cut the spines off the sides.  Once that is completed, slice the leaf open and put the gelatinous side on the area that is burned and tape it on. I really thought I would never use it.

One day my four-year-old son placed his hand on the electric burner just as I lifted the pan off of it. (He told me later he thought it was immediately cool when you turn it off; I guess I didn’t explain that very well.) He shrieked in pain.  When I grabbed his hand to turn it over to access his injury you could see the rings of the stove burned into the flesh. I quickly ran to the neighbors and followed his previous instructions. Not long after the application of the aloe vera to his hand the pain subsided and became tolerable for him. I applied a fresh application of aloe vera before bed. When he arose in the morning I removed the bandage to see how it looked and to my utter surprise there was no evidence of an injury.

Indian tribes gave the plant the name “wands of heaven.” They had respect for the aloe vera plant. This truly was a heaven sent blessing when a loved one was hurt.

Aloe vera is a demulcent herb that soothes irritated and inflamed tissue. It is a cell proliferant that speedily rebuilds new cells where damage has occurred. It also has antibacterial properties.

Aloe vera can be used internally and topically. The most common household use is for burns. Additional uses include: chronic leg ulcers, sunburns, wounds, scrapes, cuts, deodorant, clearing the throat, itching, insect bites, cleansing douche, digestive ulcers, peptic ulcers, eliminating liver spots, acne, nose congestion, maintaining good blood vessel tone and healthy circulation and it is a great mask to tighten and firm skin.

This is one plant that belongs in every home. It is easy to grow and takes little maintenance so….. you might want to get some “wands from heaven.” for your family.

Yvonne Salcido is a Master Herbalist graduate of the School of Natural Healing.