Does Eating Garlic Keep Mosquitoes Away?

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The Mosquito

It may sound like an old wive's tale, but there is something to be said about the use of garlic to ward of our peskiest of pests--the mosquito. If you've ever spent anytime in the backyard, you may have noticed that some people seem entirely immune to the mosquito, or at least their bite. They can stand there for hours on end and never once be bothered by this blood-sucking nuisance, while others find a mere step out the door will call to them a hungry swarm. So what's deal?

The real reason one person attracts more mosquitoes than the next has a lot to do with their body chemistry. Translation? The way they smell. Some people actually emit an odor that essentially masks them from the mosquito, which sends this insect flying right on by to a more desirable meal, begging the question--is there a way to alter your scent?

How It Works

Besides spraying on DEET-filled repellent or fumigating the yard for a bug-free night, you can honestly make yourself less attractive to the mosquito by dining on garlic.

Ingesting larger quantities of garlic will in fact create a sort of indistinguishable barrier between you and the mosquito. With enough garlic in your system, the pores of your body begin to secrete almost an oil-like substance that is only really detectable by creepy-crawlies, mosquitoes being one of them. This oily secretion creates a scent that deters the female mosquito from biting you. How much garlic is needed to make it work is really dependent upon the individual, since no two people are alike. It may take a few trials to figure out exactly how much garlic you need to eat.

Another Approach

If you'd rather not be your own guinea pig or don't enjoy the taste of garlic, you may also think about picking up a bottle of garlic pills. They have virtually the same effect on the body, both in regard to the natural mosquito repellent and basic health benefits, as does the fresh herb. Simply follow the recommended dosage on the package to get it started.

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