Now that the summer season is heating up and the bugs are already out there and multiplying. The scents that repel insects are also the ones humans find more attractive! They can smell the sugar, so avoid any sweets and alcohols!!
Here are some suggestions to prevent the bite or help the sting of the bite!
Basil or Holy basil of India, is used by traditional healers by rubbing the skin with fresh leaves to repel bugs, it is temporary but will work for short periods of time.
Garlic both repels and treats, it can be used both topically or ingested. Garlic oil, in an Italian study, worked well to protect against bites or you can crush garlic cloves and apply directly to a sting or bite.
Lemongrass, a close relative to citronella, contains the same bug repellent compounds. Crush fresh herb and rub it on skin before going outside. You could also use a lemongrass essential oil.
Meat tenderizer, a tried and true remedy to treat a bite because it contains the enzyme, Papain, it breaks down insect venom. Papaya has the same Papain enzyme so just place a fresh piece of the fruit on the bite!
Mint is both a repellent and a cooling feeling, decreasing the sting flushing out the venom. All members of the mint family can be potent repellents.
Cinnamon besides preventing the bite; helps to kill mosquito larvae! Add cinnamon oil to your lotion or sunscreen and the benefits will be appealing to you but repel those bugs!
Cloves is one of the most effective insect repellants even for fleas besides the other biting and stinging kind. Mix clove oil with water a 1:10 ratio to spray outdoors and in planters etc. Dilute the oil with rubbing alcohol, olive oil or vodka, use 5-10 drops of clove essential oil to 10 mls diluting substance mix and shake well. Spray directly on skin when going outside, wash off when you are done working or playing outside!
Remember before going outside that bugs are attracted to sugar and alcohol and so avoid eating or drinking any sugary food or drinking alcohol before playing or working in the garden and yard. Also, on my travels, I was told that mosquitos are attracted to dark colored clothes; so as an added prevention wear white or light colors!
The Green Pharmacy Guide to Healing Foods by James Duke