A Chinese lady tried to gain fame and glory on the internet, by posting a video of herself that she called, “Aloe Vera Feast.” The video showed her eating a giant ‘aloe vera’ leaf while holding another.
Zhang, 26, quickly realised that she was ingesting something very different from aloe vera, when she realised how bitter the plant was. Her skin erupted in pustules and itchy spots after ingestion of the American aloe. She said that after one mouthful her mouth went numb and her throat burned.
Medical staff had to pump her stomach to remove all traces of the agave plant, and she has fortunately been restored to a stable condition.
It was discovered that Zhang ate the American aloe (Agave americana), a large succulent plant, related to the cactus family, that looks very similar to aloe vera.
In fact, American aloe has been used by native Indians for years as an antiseptic to treat wounds and as a medicine to cure diarrhoea. The agave plant is also used to make alcohol, such as mescal and tequila.
Other health benefits include aiding liver and digestive functions. But clearly those benefits are lost on her.