|The Effects of Lifelong Aloe Ingestion on Aging and Pathology
|| by Yu, Herlihy & Ikeno
By Byung Pal Yu, Jeremiah Herlihy and Yuji Ikeno
Department of Physiology
University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio
use of Aloe vera has crossed the barriers of time and culture in its
promise to alleviate a broad range of illnesses. The basis of its
reputation resides mainly with the steadfast beliefs in claims of its
curative properties, but without hard scientific evidence.
objective of our study was to initiate a systematic and scientific
investigation of the effects of long-term aloe ingestion on laboratory
rats. Utilizing well-characterized, inbred male F344 rats, housed under
specific pathogen-free barrier conditions, we determined longevity,
age-related pathology, and selected physiological and metabolic
parameters. A total of 360 rats were divided into four groups: Group 1
(control) was fed a semi-synthetic diet without aloe; Group 2 was fed a
diet containing a 1% freeze-dried aloe filet; Group 3 was fed a diet
containing a 1% charcoal-processed, freeze-dried aloe filet; and Group 4
was given whole leaf aloe (0.02%) in drinking water. For the longevity
and pathological studies, 60 rats from each group were used. For the
physiological and metabolic studies, 30 rats were sacrificed at 4, 8,
and 16 months of age.
A summary of results are as follows:
Aloe ingestion, both crude and processed, was shown to extend (¬10%)
average life span and slow the mortality rate doubling time. Also,
several beneficial effects from aloe ingestion on age-related disease
were found: Group 2 and 3 showed a lower incidence of atrial thrombosis
than Group 1. Furthermore, Group 2 showed a significantly lower
incidence of fatal chronic nephropathy and occurrence of multiple causes
of death compared to the control group. All groups ingesting aloe
showed a slightly lower incidence of fatal leukemia. Moreover, no
adverse, toxic effects were found with the ingestion of aloe vera.
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