Aloe vera juice, also known as aloe vera water, comes from aloe vera leaves. The juice may contain the green leaf part of the plant, the gel (or the pulp), and the latex (which is the layer between the skin and the gel). These parts are blended with water to create aloe juice, although some juices may only contain the gel.
Many people consume aloe vera juice directly, while others may prefer to use it as an ingredient for other foods such as cocktails or cookies. The juice, after all, offers numerous health benefits and is a well-known quick fix for a wide range of conditions—from gastric problems to skin issues.
What many people don’t know, however, is that aloe vera may also be an effective treatment for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Read this article to learn more.
What Is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?
IBS is a chronic condition affecting the digestive system. This functional gastrointestinal disorder is typically associated with stomach discomfort or pain. It may also cause other symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, cramps, bloating, or gas. These symptoms may last for days and even months at a time, but they also come and go over time.
Experts estimate that between 25 to 45 million people in the United States suffer from IBS. Although IBS is a lifelong condition, only a small percentage of these people actually experience severe symptoms. For most people, the symptoms are manageable with a few diet or lifestyle changes. No specific treatment or therapy works for everyone, but most people can find an option that works for them.
For instance, many people have reported significant results from drinking aloe vera juice. But is it really an effective treatment for IBS?
What Are the Benefits of Aloe Vera Juice for IBS?
As of this writing, scientific findings about the effects of aloe vera on IBS are still limited and contradictory. There are a number of studies that showed aloe vera’s positive effects on gastrointestinal inflammation, which can aggravate IBS symptoms. Other studies, however, have found that taking aloe vera doesn’t really show a marked difference from a placebo.
These studies include:
- A 2011 study from the journal ISRN Obstetrics and Gynecology tested patients to determine whether consuming aloe vera orally can significantly improve their quality of life. Results, however, showed that there was no difference between the effects of the placebo and the aloe vera treatment.
- A 2013 study from the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences tested Iranian patients to determine the treatment efficacy of aloe vera juice. The researchers found that while patients reported a reduction in abdominal discomfort or pain and flatulence, there was a significant difference in the urgency and frequency of their bowel movements.
- A 2018 review and systematic analysis from the Journal of Neurogastroenterology and Motility evaluated the safety and efficacy of aloe vera as a treatment. The researchers concluded that aloe vera pills, gels, and juices are safe and effective short-term treatments. However, they also noted that further research is necessary to establish whether the same results would be reached for patients suffering from different subtypes of IBS.
How Can You Take Aloe Vera Juice for IBS?
When taken internally, aloe vera juice can have a soothing effect on IBS symptoms. You can create the juice using only aloe vera gel, or you can add aloe latex. Aloe latex contains natural laxatives called anthraquinones, which may be beneficial in relieving constipation. It is, however, important to note that taking too much laxative may also aggravate your symptoms.
Here are a number of ways for you to include aloe vera juice in your diet:
- Make your own aloe vera juice from scratch. Scoop out the gel or grind the entire leaf after removing the pointy spikes.
- Get some store-bought aloe vera juice and take 1-2 tablespoons daily.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons every day to your favorite beverage, smoothie, or juice blend.
Make sure that you consult your gastroenterologist before you start using aloe vera juice as part of your treatment.
Want to Learn More About Aloe Vera’s Effects on IBS?
If you have more questions about the effects of aloe vera on IBS or about aloe vera in general, we can help.
Aloe Laboratories produces a variety of aloe products that are proven safe and high-quality. We hold a number of certifications attesting to the rigorous standards we adhere to during the production process. We also offer a range of options to meet your needs and provide you with the most value for your money.