FAQ about Aloe vera and Forever Living
Forever Living Products takes care to maintain close contact with the market via our distributors, who we call Forever Business Owners or FBOs. If there are ever any questions, we have an entire support organization available for our customers and distributors across Scandinavia. Feel free to contact them if you can’t find an answer to your question in our FAQs below.
What is Aloe vera?
Aloe vera (Aloe barbadensis Mill.) is a succulent, which means it has thick leaves that store water. The leaves are long, green and fleshy, and grow in several shoots from a short stem. The flowers are yellow and grow on a long stalk in clusters during the summer. Aloe vera can come from a wide range of varieties, all of the Asphodelaceae family. The Aloe vera plant is believed to have originated in the subtropical zone around south-west Asia, but today it is grown in many places around the world.
The Aloe vera in our products comes from controlled plantations in the Dominican Republic or Texas. It is grown with great care in the best possible climate and conditions, which guarantees that you get the best products around, of the highest possible quality. As you may know, Aloe vera has been used for thousands of years, and today millions of people use it every day –and love it. Parts or even the whole plant can be used for cosmetics and foodstuffs.
The International Aloe Science Council, IASC, has established standards for the content of certain substances in Aloe vera for consumption. All of Forever’s products are tested carefully and checked before, during and after manufacture, to ensure they always meet prevailing regulations and the strict product safety criteria. Forever only uses the inner gel of Aloe vera from the Aloe barbadensis Miller variety, and never the skin. The outer layer is removed carefully directly after harvesting, since it contains certain natural substances that are not wanted in the end product. Only finished products that meet the high standards of purity and quality are approved for sale.
What should I know about citric acid?
Citric acid is one of the most widely used food additives, and is used as an antioxidant or acidity regulator. Antioxidants are added to food to prevent fat from going rancid, and to fruit-based products to prevent discolouration (oxidization). It also helps to preserve easily perishable vitamins, such as Vitamins A, D, E and B2. As an acidity regulator citric acid does just that: it regulates the degree of acidity in a food.
To be used in food, an additive must first be assessed and approved by the European Food Safety Authority, EFSA. Additives are approved by the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union for use throughout the EU.
Citric acid is produced synthetically by fermenting carbohydrates (e.g. from maize) using the mould fungus Aspergillus niger. It is not permitted to use strains of Aspergillus niger that produce toxins (poisons) to produce citric acid. This is regulated in Commission Regulation (EU) No. 231/2012. Forever only uses citric acid made from strains that do not produce toxins.
Using mould fungi and bacteria to produce foodstuffs is not uncommon. For example, special mould fungi are used to make certain types of cheese and salami. Citric acid is also produced naturally in our cells, and is a necessary means of providing the cells with energy. It is not possible to be allergic to pure citric acid. Allergies are a reaction to proteins, and citric acid is not a protein. As a food additive, citric acid is normally only used in very small amounts. The majority of the citric acid we consume as humans comes naturally from fruit and vegetables.
What is propolis?
Propolis is also sometimes known as bee glue. It is a genuine bee product, an ingredient made by bees to use as a protective sealant in the nest. The raw material for the bees’ production of propolis is resin from coniferous trees and certain deciduous trees. For us humans, propolis is a popular ingredient in skincare products and dietary supplements.
What is allantoin?
Allantoin occurs naturally in the plant comfrey, for instance. Allantoin has skin conditioning, protecting and soothing properties, which makes it a popular ingredient in different skincare products.
Allantoin is a natural substance that has a good ability to bind moisture and have an astringent effect. Because of these properties it is very useful in moisturizing skincare products. Because it binds moisture, allantoin helps to rehydrate the skin and increase its softness. Allantoin is a mild substance that rarely causes irritation. On the contrary it has a soothing effect, making it an ideal ingredient for dry and sensitive skin.
What is sodium hyaluronate?
Sodium hyaluronate is a variant of hyaluronic acid – the sodium salt of hyaluronic acid to be precise. Sodium hyaluronate is a popular ingredient in skincare products because of its skin conditioning and moisturizing properties. It is often used instead of hyaluronic acid, since sodium hyaluronate has a better ability to absorb into the skin.
Hyaluronic acid occurs naturally in the skin, just like collagen and elastin. The substance is strongly water-binding, which makes it one of the skin’s most important moisturizers. The amount decreases as the skin ages, thus also reducing the skin’s elasticity and ability to retain moisture. Since hyaluronic acid has the amazing ability to moisturize deep down and smooth out the skin, it is added to certain skin and face creams. The substance is listed in the ingredients as Sodium Hyaluronate.
How do I know if a food product contains any allergens?
If a food product, such as a dietary supplement or meal replacement, contains one or more ingredients derived from one of the following allergens, this must be clearly shown on the label:
grains that contain gluten – including wheat, rye, barley and oats (cross contamination)
crustaceans – including shrimps, crab and lobster
molluscs – including squid, mussels, snails and slugs
nuts – including hazelnuts, almonds and pecan nuts
sulphur dioxide or sulphites in levels above 10 mg per kg or per litre
Allergens are always marked in bold in the ingredients.
Always check the ingredients if you are allergic to any other substance. The ingredients must always show exactly what the product contains. If you are in any doubt, we recommend seeking medical advice before using a dietary supplement or meal replacement.
Are Forever’s skincare products dermatologically tested?
Yes. The final formula of every cosmetic product is always tested on human skin under the watchful eye of dermatological experts to make sure it is safe. The main aim of this test is to discover early skin irritation and/or existing allergic sensitization to the test substance. The mandatory dermatological testing – skin prick testing or SPT – is carried out in line with Dermatest international guidelines. Only products that pass this test are deemed safe to use.
Are Forever’s products tested on animals
No. You can rest assured that we have resolved never to carry out animals testing for any of our products, at any point in the production chain. This is in line with our corporate goals, and is also EU law. The EC Cosmetics Directive forbids testing any cosmetic product or cosmetic ingredient on animals.
To show our commitment in this area, we are proud to display the Leaping Bunny symbol. Leaping Bunny or Cruelty Free International is an internationally recognized programme for cosmetics, personal care and household products, certifying that they have not been tested on animals. All companies certified under Leaping Bunny must meet the same criteria. Displaying the Leaping Bunny symbol is, however, optional for companies in their marketing. Since we have far-reaching labelling directives in the EU when it comes to information on product packaging, governing how mandatory information is communicated to consumers, we are often forced to prioritize mandatory information above voluntary information – such as a symbol. Even so, we proudly display the Leaping Bunny symbol on our marketing material and online where appropriate.
Are Forever’s dietary supplements doping tested?
Only medicines and pharmaceutical substances undergo doping tests, not dietary supplements and other foodstuffs, according to information from the Swedish Sports Confederation. The ingredients in a product are clearly stated in the product’s ingredients list, as per prevailing legal requirements.
Particular products from Forever have however been tested for doping-classed substances, and these are stated in the Cologne List. See the link below. Although other products should not have any doubtful substances added to them, these have not been specifically tested for doping-classed ingredients. If you would like to see which substances are doping classed by WADA (the World Anti Doping Agency), you can go to the link below:
Cologne List (use the Search function to find Forever): http://www.koelnerliste.com/no_cache/en/product-database.html
Which products should I avoid if I’m taking a particular medication?
No clinical studies or research looking specifically at the effects of different illnesses or compatibility with different medications have been conducted on any of Forever’s products. If you are being treated for an illness or are on medication and would like to use a dietary supplement or plant-based supplement, we recommend first seeking medical advice.
Which products can I use if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?
No clinical studies or research looking specifically at pregnant or breastfeeding women have been conducted. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding and would like to use cosmetic products or dietary supplements, we recommend first consulting your midwife, health visitor, paediatric nurse or doctor.
Are there risks associated with exceeding the recommended dose of a dietary supplement?
Generally speaking, you should not exceed the recommended daily dose or daily reference intake (% RI) of any vitamin or mineral. We recommend not exceeding the daily reference intake when it comes to fat-soluble vitamins (Vitamins A, D, E and K), which are stored in the body’s adipose tissues when taken in excess, or minerals. Water-soluble vitamins (Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, B12 and C) generally pass out of the body in urine when taken in excess.
A dietary supplement should not be used as an alternative to a varied diet. If you are unsure whether or not to take a dietary supplement, we recommend seeking medical advice before use. This is particularly important if you are on medication, pregnant or breastfeeding.
Are the contents of Forever products inspected regularly?
Yes. Quality and safety are our highest priorities, and both the products and the packaging are produced with great care. The raw materials used and the end products are always sampled prior to distribution, to ensure that everything meets our strict requirements. Our suppliers are expected to employ the same level of control. The levels of constituents in all Forever products always fall within safe, approved limits in line with prevailing legal requirements and recommendations. Only finished products that meet the high standards of purity and quality are approved for sale.
What do I do if I’m not sure whether I’m intolerant to a skincare product?
Rub a little of the cream into your inside elbow or behind your ear, where the skin is thin and fine. Do this morning and evening for one to two weeks. If there is no skin irritation, carefully try using the cream on a larger area of your body, or on your face if it’s a face cream.
Is Forever’s packaging recyclable?
Yes. Check your local recycling to see how to separate the various parts. They will either be recycled or used for energy recovery.
What is IASC?
The International Aloe Science Council, a non-profit industry organisation for producers of Aloe vera and Aloe vera products, who have a shared interest in research into Aloe vera and the use of the ingredient, e.g. in food, dietary supplements and skincare. The IASC is a forum that not only amasses knowledge about Aloe vera, but also formulates rules and specifications for certifying genuine, high-quality Aloe vera products and Aloe vera raw materials.
The IASC has established standards for the content of certain substances in Aloe vera for consumption. All of Forever’s products are tested carefully and checked before, during and after manufacture, to ensure they always meet prevailing laws and regulations, as well as the strict product safety criteria. Only finished products that meet the high standards of purity and quality are approved for sale.
Since many of Forever’s products have a high content of Aloe vera, we have many IASC approved products. You can see the full list here: http://iasc.org/Certification/CertifiedProducts.aspx
For more information about the International Aloe Science Council, go to: www.iasc.org.
Where can I find information about the product content?
The content of a product can be found on its label. You can also find information about the ingredients in each product under the Products menu. Please note that a product’s contents may change, and that the information on the packaging is always the information that applies.
Are Forever’s products safe?
Quality and safety are our highest priorities, and both the products and the packaging are produced with great care. The raw materials and the end products are always sampled prior to distribution, to ensure that everything meets our strict quality and safety requirements. Our suppliers are expected to employ the same level of control.
Forever always follows the latest research and recommendations for ingredients we use in our products. All the ingredients may currently be used in the European union and are deemed completely safe for use by consumers in line with our recommendations. The levels of constituents in all the products always fall within safe, approved limits in line with prevailing legal requirements and recommendations. Only finished products that meet the high standards of purity and quality are therefore approved for sale.