There are a number of health benefits of aloe that can be mentioned here. However, one major benefit aloe has on our health is the assistance it provides to macrophages. Macrophages work well on their own to help the body stay healthy. Aloe health benefits are abundant. But together, macrophages and aloe can provide the greatest positive effect on our bodies.
What is a Macrophage?
The word macrophage is Greek for “big eater.” Greeks gave these cells their name because they are large and they can identify and consume damaged, abnormal, or infected cells and cell waste. Dr. Ananya Mandal from News Medical describes macrophages as, “Important cells of the immune system that are formed in response to an infection or accumulating damaged or dead cells.” Macrophages are formed by the separation of monocytes, which are white blood cells.
What Do Macrophages Do?
Dr. Mandal goes on to say that when the body experiences damage or infection, the monocytes move to the area and then morph into macrophages. Macrophages can then transform themselves into different sizes in order to fight disease. Therefore, they are a great form of protection to our bodies. They play a role in adaptive immunity, muscle regeneration, wound healing, and iron stability. They can also help the body create certain defense mechanisms against foreign materials, remains, and microbes.
What Role Does Aloe Play?
Aloe has many health benefits of its own. It is widely known for being used as a gel to soothe burns and other wounds. There are a couple of particular substances found in the leaves of Aloe Arborescens that play a large role in assisting macrophages. One substance is called aloeride, which is a starch that comes from aloe juice. This chemical compound triggers the immune system to produce macrophages that will slow down and even kill the production of pathogens, like bacteria.
Another substance called Mannans are sugars that intensify the communication that goes on both between and within the cells in your body. This communication provides a place in which the regulation of cells can take place.
Studies Done Regarding Health Benefits of Aloe
Many research studies have been conducted to test the effects and assistance that aloe has on macrophages. One study, in particular, showed that Acemannan, has many therapeutic properties that are exerted through macrophages. However, researchers also learned that in order for this to occur, large concentrations of it were required. Therefore, aloeride was studied alone, and researchers learned that “although this polysaccharide comprises only 0.015% of the original dry weight, its potency in this [analysis] accounts fully for the activity observed in the crude aloe juice.” The aloeride was proven to be a huge benefit to the macrophages in our bodies.
When macrophages and aloe work together, they provide many extremely important benefits to the health of our bodies. They help our cells communicate properly with each other to ensure the destruction of dead and damaged cells. They also teach our body to fight against infection and avoid disease.