Benefits From Drinking Aloe Vera Juice
Benefits of Drinking Aloe Vera Juice
If you think you’ve noticed aloe vera juice lining the shelves of your local grocery store, you’re not seeing things. This well-known plant, previously sought mainly to soothe sunburns, is making a splash with health-conscious individuals. While little evidence exists to support its touted benefits, such as weight loss and appetite control, it does offer some nutritional value when incorporated into a healthy diet.
Keeps You Hydrated
Aloe vera juice contains electrolyte minerals, including magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium. You lose electrolytes when you sweat and when it’s hot outside. Whether you take it with you on a hot summer day or to the gym to drink after a hard workout, aloe vera juice can help you replenish lost electrolytes and remain hydrated. Because many sports drinks are high in sugar, aloe juice makes a smart sports drink alternative.
Replaces Sugary Beverages
The average American consumes far too much sugar, 47 percent of which comes from sugar-loaded beverages, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. One of the best and easiest approaches to lowering sugar intake is to start replacing sodas and other sugary drinks with healthier liquids. That’s where beverages such as aloe vera juice come in.
Pure aloe vera made from the inner gel is both sugar-free and calorie-free. It also has a neutral taste, making it an excellent choice for creating your own fruit-infused beverages. With a little creativity, making delicious aloe vera drinks without all the sugar and calories is a breeze.
Try infusing your favorite fruit and sweetening it with stevia or another low-calorie sweetener.
Aloe vera juice, along with other plant foods in your diet, supplies antioxidant compounds that help keep you healthy. Your body is constantly bombarded with unstable molecules known as free radicals – natural byproducts of breathing air. When you have enough antioxidants, free radicals are kept under control so that they don’t harm your cells. Free radicals cause chemical reactions linked to aging and a host of chronic diseases, so reigning them in is a necessity.
Luckily, a healthy diet supplies polyphenol compounds, such as those in aloe vera juice, that go around the body scavenging free radicals, neutralizing them and essentially stopping them in their tracks.
Don’t Be Fooled
A stroll through your local health food market will likely yield a plethora of aloe vera juice varieties from numerous brands. Just because aloe vera juice has inherent benefits doesn’t mean every choice on the shelf is healthy. Some varieties are high in added sugar. Check the labels carefully, as you would with other food and beverages in your diet.
Other aloe vera juices have a host of added herbs and other ingredients promoted for additional health benefits. Avoid varieties that have a cocktail of ingredients and stick to no-added sugar or lightly sweetened aloe vera juice options.
Janet Renee is a registered dietitian with a focus on hormonal imbalance. She helps clients with issues like polycystic ovary syndrome and insulin resistance balance their hormones and lose weight through dietary changes. Renee shares her knowledge and expertise through regular contributions to health and wellness publications, including Shape, Women’s Health and Vegetarian Times.
[Podcast] UNAIR Students Produces Natural Sweetener Made of Aloe vera
UNAIR NEWS – Aloe vera is a plant with various uses, either for beauty or health but it is rarely found as food products. That is what inspired Bisma Brata Atmaja (FEB 2014), Fania Andriana (FEB 2014), Indi Mumtaza (Pharmacy 2014), Hady Palgunadi (FST 2014) and Muhammad Yusuf (FEB 2015) to make a breakthrough, aloe vera sweetener safe for consumption and for healthy life style.
“We’d like to make Aloe vera popular and easy to consume. So gulo ijo was produced as natural sweetener. It taste similar as usual sugar, no trace of aloe vera taste, but we still get its advantages,” said Hady.
During gulo ijo production, there were obstacles. One of them was when heating the sieve with too much heat, it could not be used again. The team also had to travel a long way to get aloe vera supplier with good price and good quality.
Gulo ijo is distributed in 125 g packets. To produce the sugar, aloe vera is peeled, washed and then whipped. When it becomes liquid, aloe vera is heated so it shrinks to its three fourth weight. Then sugar is added with 1:1 comparison. Finally, the mixture is cooked and becomes gulo ijo.
Besides producing gulo ijo. The students in this team also produces various drinks from Aloe vera and uses gulo ijo sweetener in the production.
“We are now experimenting to produce nata de coco made of aloe vera,” Handy said. (*)
Author : Afifah Nurrosyidah
Editor : Dilan Salsabila
5 Natural Sweeteners That Are Good for Your Health
Reducing your intake of refined sugar can be tough, but given how incredibly harmful sugar can be, it’s definitely worth the effort ().
Fortunately, quite a few sweeteners found in nature are actually healthy.
They’re low in calories, low in fructose, and taste very sweet.
Here are 5 natural sweeteners that could be healthier alternatives to refined sugar.
Stevia is a very popular low calorie sweetener.
It’s extracted from the leaves of a plant called Stevia rebaudiana.
This plant has been grown for its sweetness and medicinal purposes for centuries in South America.
Several sweet compounds are found in stevia leaves. The main ones are stevioside and rebaudioside A. Both are hundreds of times sweeter than sugar, gram for gram.
Therefore, stevia is very sweet but has virtually no calories.
Additionally, a few human-based studies suggest stevia may have health benefits, including for the following health parameters:
- Blood pressure. Stevia may help lower high blood pressure in people with hypertension. However, it doesn’t affect normal or only mildly elevated blood pressure levels ().
- Blood sugar. Stevia may be a helpful sugar alternative for people with diabetes and help maintain healthy blood sugar levels. However, some research suggests that stevia may negatively affect the gut microbiome (, ).
Many people greatly dislike the taste of stevia. The flavor depends on the brand, though, so you may need to experiment to find a type of stevia you like.
Stevia is a natural, zero-calorie sweetener that may help lower both your blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
Erythritol is another low calorie sweetener.
It’s a sugar alcohol found naturally in certain fruits. However, powdered erythritol available for purchase is most likely made via an industrial process.
Erythritol tastes very much like sugar, although it can have a mild aftertaste.
Erythritol doesn’t spike your blood sugar or insulin levels, nor does it affect levels of blood fats like cholesterol or triglycerides (, ).
It’s absorbed into your body from your intestines, but it’s eventually excreted from your urine unchanged ().
Although it’s often better tolerated than other sugar alcohols, it could cause digestive issues, including gas and diarrhea, if you consume too much at a time — especially if it’s combined with other types of sugar like fructose.
Keep in mind that erythritol is much less likely to cause digestive issues than other sugar alcohols such as xylitol ().
Additionally, one study including 264 young adults showed that higher blood levels of erythritol were associated with increased belly fat, which may be due to a genetic predisposition to convert sugar into erythritol ().
Erythritol is a very sweet and low calorie sugar alcohol. Studies show that it’s generally safe to eat, although it can cause digestive problems at high doses.
Xylitol is a sugar alcohol with a sweetness similar to that of sugar.
Xylitol appears to have some benefits for dental health, including reducing the risk of cavities and dental decay ().
According to some animal studies, it may also improve bone density, helping prevent osteoporosis ().
Furthermore, research shows that xylitol can increase levels of several compounds in the digestive tract to help support your gut microbiome ().
Xylitol also doesn’t raise blood sugar or insulin levels. However, like other sugar alcohols, it can cause digestive side effects, including abdominal gas and diarrhea, at high doses ().
Keeping this in mind, it’s best to use xylitol in moderation.
Finally, if you have a dog at home, keep xylitol out of its reach, as xylitol is highly toxic to dogs ().
Xylitol is a very popular sweetener. It’s a sugar alcohol containing about 2.4 calories per gram and may have some benefits for dental and digestive health. Research in rats suggests it may improve bone density and lower the risk of osteoporosis.
4. Yacon syrup
Yacon syrup is another unique sweetener.
It’s harvested from the yacon plant, which grows natively in the Andes in South America.
It’s very high in fructooligosaccharides, which function as soluble fibers that feed the good bacteria in your intestine ().
Yacon syrup may prevent constipation and has various benefits due to its high amount of soluble fiber (, ).
Don’t eat too much at a time, though, as it can cause digestive problems.
Yacon syrup is very high in fructooligosaccharides, which feed the good bacteria in your intestines. It may help prevent constipation and promote weight loss.
5. Monk fruit sweetener
Monk fruit is a type of fruit native to Southeast Asia. It’s often used to make a natural sweetener called monk fruit extract.
It’s free of calories and carbs, and some research suggests it may help support better blood sugar management. Yet, this same research concluded that there’s not enough evidence to determine the safety of monk fruit extract as a food additive ().
Monk fruit also contains antioxidant compounds known as mogrosides, which studies have shown may reduce markers of inflammation (, ).
Although there’s limited research on the effects of monk fruit in humans, it’s generally considered safe and hasn’t been associated with any negative side effects ().
However, it’s important to check the ingredient label when purchasing monk fruit extract, as many products are combined with sugar or other sweeteners, which could negate its potential health benefits.
Monk fruit is free of carbs and calories and may help support better blood sugar management. It also contains compounds with anti-inflammatory properties.
What about other natural sugar substitutes like honey?
There are several popular sugary sweeteners that health-conscious people often eat instead of sugar, including coconut sugar, molasses, honey, and maple syrup. These really aren’t much different from sugar.
They may contain slightly smaller amounts of fructose and a tiny amount of nutrients, but your body really won’t be able to tell the difference.
Furthermore, while these natural sugar substitutes may be a better alternative to regular sugar if used in moderation, they should not be considered a quick fix for your health concerns.
In fact, consuming high amounts of natural sugars or sugar substitutes over the long term could increase cravings for sweets and may contribute to issues like weight gain and type 2 diabetes (, , ).
The harmful effects of sugar depend completely on the context. Most of the related studies were conducted in people who were already eating a diet high in carbs and processed foods.
For these people, especially those with overweight or insulin resistance, large amounts of sugar can be especially harmful ().
Healthy people can eat sugar in small amounts without any harm. While sugar still provides calories without much nutritional value and may cause cavities, small amounts of these natural sugars can be included in a well-rounded diet.
The bottom line
If you’re concerned about added sugar intake, it’s important to focus on the totality of your diet.
It’s entirely possible to enjoy your favorite sweet foods on occasion without harming your overall health, as long as your diet mostly comprises nutrient-dense, whole foods.
Choosing nutritious, naturally sweet options like fruit and nut butter is a good choice when craving something sweet. Yet, fearing or avoiding foods that are high in sugar may cause you to fixate on that one food, increasing cravings and desire.
In the end, it’s best to follow a balanced approach to your diet, which involves enjoying your favorite foods on occasion.
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