Did you know that mosquitoes are attracted to your scent? That's right! They're trained to find sources of food based off of smells like lactic acid and carbon dioxide because these are scents produced by warm-blooded creatures. Insect repellent with DEET is a typical go-to to help cover up our scent and in turn ward off these annoying pests, but prolonged exposure to the chemical can lead to unhealthy side effects. Luckily, you can also help shield your body from bug bites through the foods you eat so we're sharing a few ways to fight off these vermin with items from your pantry.

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  1. Citrus fruits like grapefruit, lemon, limes, and oranges are a tasty way to repel mosquitoes.
  2. Garlic will offer mild protection when your body begins emitting the scent through your pours and breath. The sulfur gas interferes with a bug's sense of smell so it can't detect that you're a source of food. You can also buy garlic-scented lotions and sprays to get the same effect.
  3. Onions, like garlic, contain allicin and bugs are not a fan of this strong scent.
  4. Spicy foods and chili peppers contain capsaicin, which is used as a natural insecticide, but when eaten also produces a body odor that bugs just can't stand.
  5. Vitamin B1, or thiamine, also wards off mosquitoes and can be found in foods like wheat bread, sunflower seeds, green peas, hummus, lentils, tomatoes, macadamia nuts and squash.
  6. Lemongrass has also been found to help mask our odor and repel bugs.

Avoid consuming a lot of salty foods or any that are high in potassium before entering an area that's swarming with mosquitoes. These two increase your output of lactic acid, which is like a calling card for these insects.

Image via Thinkstock

Add Comment How do you protect yourself from mosquito bites?
About the author

Dorkys is a freelance writer who covers entertainment, health and lifestyle for various publications. She's also a stationery designer and has her own greeting card company called Porcupine Hugs.

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Filed Under: family, home remedies, natural, tips
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