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6 Ways to Beat Mosquitoes Naturally

6 Ways to Beat Mosquitoes Naturally

‘Tis the season for sunshine, barbecues, and mosquitoes.

Before you grab that DEET-based mosquito repellent in an effort to keep the mosquitoes at bay, consider that research at Duke University links diethyl-meta-toluamide (DEET) use to brain damage —no wonder the mosquitoes leave at the first scent of it.  Perhaps we’d be wise to follow their lead and stay clear of the stuff.  Check out my article tomorrow on the dangers of DEET mosquitorepellents.

Here are six natural options that mosquitoes hate and you’ll soon love.  You don’t have to worry about DEET-induced brain cell damage or scratching yourself to death.  And, if you still think that natural means less effective, keep reading.  Some of these mosquito repellents are MORE EFFECTIVE THAN DEET!

1.  Citronella
The old standby.  Be sure you’re using pure essential oil, not fragrance oil, which is ineffective and potentially dangerous.  Most mosquito repellent products “containing citronella” are made with fragrance oil and should be avoided.  If you’re applying citronella to your skin, dilute it in a carrier oil or natural moisturizer.  A few drops per tablespoon of oil or cream is all that is needed.

2. Catnip
Research at Iowa State University found that catnip essential oil 10 is times more effective than DEET at repelling mosquitoes.  Mosquitoes will hate you and cats will love you.  Like citronella be sure to use it diluted in a carrier oil or natural moisturizer.

3. Lavender essential oil
Smells great and is a commonly used and effective mosquito repellent.

4. Soy oil
Better yet, choose organic soy oil as the carrier oil for catnip, lavender, and citronella essential oils.  According to research published in The New England Journal of Medicine soybean oil-based mosquito repellents are as effective as DEET-containing repellents.

5. NEEM seed oil
“Neem oil” is extracted from a plant that grows in India.  An ingredient in Neem seed oil has also been found to be more effective than DEET by researchers at the Malaria Institute in India.  Both the US National Research Council and the Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association have confirmed this finding.

6. Garlic
Eat lots of fresh garlic—mosquitoes will steer clear of you since they hate the stuff.  As an added bonus, so will vampires.

Related:

Copyright Michelle Schoffro Cook

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Michelle Schoffro Cook

Michelle Schoffro Cook, MSc, RNCP, ROHP, DNM, PhD is an international best-selling and 17-time book author and board-certified doctor of natural medicine, whose works include: 60 Seconds to Slim, Weekend Wonder Detox, Healing Recipes, The Vitality Diet, Allergy-Proof, Arthritis-Proof, Total Body Detox, The Life Force Diet, The Ultimate pH Solution, The 4-Week Ultimate Body Detox Plan, and her new book The Probiotic Promise. Subscribe to her free e-magazine World's Healthiest News at WorldsHealthiestDiet.com to receive monthly health news, tips, recipes and more. Follow her on Twitter @mschoffrocook and Facebook.

695 comments

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7:33AM PDT on May 31, 2015

Handy tips.

6:33AM PDT on May 10, 2015

I like #6 best.

9:38PM PDT on Apr 25, 2015

Recently saw my first mosquito of the season, now that it is finally Spring and many of these suggestions are helpful. Interesting comments.

Spiders are not overly fond of the scent of essential oils spritzed on patio areas outside either.

9:19PM PDT on Apr 25, 2015

Great tips, Skin So Soft bath oil from Avon works wonders too, thank you for sharing

9:17PM PDT on Apr 25, 2015

Great hints, mozzies don't like me, so I'm OK,

11:27PM PDT on Apr 22, 2015

thanks for sharing

1:37AM PDT on Apr 22, 2015

Crush some garlic and keep it near bed! That is best for me!

8:28AM PDT on Apr 21, 2015

Thanks for re-posting.

3:51PM PDT on Apr 20, 2015

Man these things are a pain.

3:33AM PDT on Mar 21, 2015

thank you. For some reason, mosquitoes LOVE me. It isn't mutual. My husband can walk just about everywhere, so can some other members of his family, and not be bitten. Whenever I go outside, a cloud in insects appears and just follows me (literally). Nothing seems to really stop it completely.

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