It is day 2 of my 25 Day Blog Challenge and there is an aloe vera plant sitting in my kitchen. Aloe vera plants are great indoor house plants because they hold a bunch of air purifying qualities and are low maintenance. They require sunlight to grow so just put them near a window where light will hit directly. I found out that aloe vera plants also monitor the air quality, and if the plant develops brown spots it means the air quality is poor. I found this so cool! ~Nature~
There is nothing like being able to live off the land, so to speak, and grow what you need in your own home. I pretty much have minimal experience with this myself (lol), but it is a goal of mine to have a lush garden when in my own place. It’s always been appealing to me to spend a period of time living as natural and minimalistic as possible, enjoying our Earth to the fullest and removing myself from modern day “necessities”. (I think I’ll be getting close to that life soon. Are you wondering where I’m going? Hint: It’s not a commune). This includes a deep respect, understanding and utilization of Mother Nature instead of commercial quick fixes. For now, I just enjoy taking all of the mint leaves my parents grow in the summer and putting them in my water, and also using the aloe.
The most obvious use of aloe vera is using the gel to treat burns. But, the plant does a bunch of other cool stuff (like cleanse the air, heal cold sores, reduce constipation, slow aging of skin, and aid in digestion, to name a few). Did you know you can also consume the gel of the aloe vera plant? Eating aloe vera gel is linked to boosted immunity, reduced constipation, reduced inflammation and provides a source of antioxidants, enzymes and minerals. So, I decided to make a smoothie with aloe vera gel. What does aloe vera taste like? BITTER. I repeat, bitter. This is not a sweet addition to your smoothie by any means, but the taste didn’t bother me nonetheless. When I know things are good for me I tend to overlook any weird tastes, but that’s just me.
I used a combination of things I had at home which sounded like the best compliments to aloe in my mind. It resulted in this aloe vera smoothie recipe:
1 cup frozen mango chunks
1 large handful of baby spinach
½ cup aloe vera (I “filleted” the gel from half a large aloe vera leaf)
½ part almond milk
½ part water
I blended it all together and the turn out was… Can you guess? Yaaas, bitter! But really, not bad. You will absolutely taste the addition of aloe vera to your smoothie, but maybe you can create a combination of smoothie goodness where aloe is just meant to be. Knowing how it helps with digestion and inflammation, I’d definitely make this aloe vera smoothie recipe again! I read from a few different sources that aloe vera shouldn’t be consumed daily, so if you’re going to try this I suggest making it a once or twice a week thing. (I think this is only because it may have a laxative affect on some people, but I’m not sure.)
You can buy high quality cold pressed organic aloe vera at a health food store or online to use for skin, scalp and hair. But when it comes it consuming aloe vera, always use gel from a fresh plant.
If I find any other cool plants to put into my smoothies, I’ll let you know 😉