Parasitic infections like malaria are serious business, especially in countries like Mexico, Venezuela, Equador, Peru, Bolivia and Brazil, where mosquitoes transmit the deadly disease at will. There are an estimated 3.4 billion people who live in an area that has a high risk of malaria transmission. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 198 million cases of malaria were treated clinically in 2013. WHO estimated there were about 500,000 deaths attributed to malaria that same year.
Malaria is a curable disease, if detected early. It is most commonly transmitted by the Anopheles mosquito. After being bit, a subject goes through a seven- to 30-day incubation period. When the parasitic infection takes hold, it may last one to three days or more. An uncomplicated case lasts six to 10 hours. The patient goes through sensations of shivering, leading to a hot stage of fever, headache, and vomiting, and finally climaxing to a stage of sweating and fatigue. If the parasitic infection complicates, it can cause organ failure and abnormal blood coagulation. This can lead to destruction of red blood cells, seizures, inhibited oxygen exchange, or acute kidney failure, among other fatal consequences.
Interestingly, two effective treatments for malaria are derived from plants. Artemisinin is derived from the Qinghaosu plant (Artemisia annua) and Quinine comes from the cinchona tree (Cinchona spp).
Similarly, natural essential oils from plants can be used to deter the mosquitoes that transmit malaria parasites. One very effective essential oil for mosquito repellent is lemon eucalyptus oil. This safe, natural plant oil contains p-menthane-diol, a plant compound that has been proven to be more effective than the leading chemical alternative, DEET (diethyltoluamide).
This is great news for those who want to repel mosquitoes without poisoning their own bodies. (DEET is a chemical poison in itself and can cause severe allergic reactions.)
Study shows lemon eucalyptus essential oil more effective than DEET
In the eye-opening study from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, United Kingdom, four mosquito repellents were put to the test. One was a mixture of several essential oils believed to have repellent properties. Another repellent was based in Neem essential oil, a natural plant compound. They also tested a repellent containing 15 percent of the controversial DEET chemical. The final product was a lemon eucalyptus-based repellent containing 30 percent p-menthane-diol, a natural compound. All repellents were applied at the same dose.
Both the Neem repellent and the compound essential oil mixture did not provide significant protection from the Anopheles mosquitoes. DEET, however, gave 84.81 percent protection in a four-hour period. In the same amount of time, the eucalyptus-based repellent provided 96.89 percent protection. This study debunks the theory that chemicals like DEET are more effective and necessary to stop mosquito-transmitted disease. Safer repellents containing lemon eucalyptus oil can be used effectively in place of DEET.
In another study, researchers found similar results. Lemon eucalyptus essential oil was just as effective as DEET in repelling Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles Funestus mosquitoes for at least six hours.
These studies prove that botanical mosquito repellents can be used with confidence. They can also be made right at home using ingredients as simple as lemon eucalyptus essential oil mixed in a medium like witch hazel and a botanical carrier oil like castor, olive, or jojoba.
As the temperature rises in the body, thousands of sweat glands begin to bead up, preparing to cool the body down. The average person possesses about 2.6 millions sweat glands -- a built in thermostat. This system is made up of eccrine glands and apocrine glands.
Eccrine glands are the most numerous, harbored in places like the forehead, hands, and feet. These glands are activated at birth and do not secrete proteins or fatty acids.
Apocrine glands, on the other hand, do secrete proteins and fatty acids and are found in the genital area and armpits. These become active during puberty and usually end in hair follicles.
The sweat coming from both types of glands does not have an odor. Body odor comes from bacteria living on the skin. The bacteria metabolize the proteins and fatty acids secreted from the eccrine glands, ultimately producing an odor. That odor can be influenced by the type of bacteria living on the skin and the kind of food a person eats.
This often unpleasant odor is the reason why deodorants and antiperspirants have become a popular body care product today. Many people have their favorite brand but are unaware that many antiperspirants are actually drugs that change the physiology of the body. These antiperspirants contain an active ingredient that is scientifically validated to accelerate brain aging and cause Alzheimer's disease. This drug is often rubbed into the sweat glands and taken up into the body.
Deodorants versus antiperspirants
Deodorants work by killing the bacteria that live on the skin. They are often scented to provide consumers with a pleasant fragrance. Commercial deodorants often contain hormone-disrupting chemical fragrances that absorb into the skin and disrupt the endocrine system. Natural deodorants use plant-based essential oils as an alternative to the chemicals. Many of these essentials oils give the natural deodorant more power, because they possess antibacterial properties that help drive away the bacteria in the sweat glands that cause the actual stink.
Antiperspirants, on the other hand, work in a much different way. Antiperspirants work by blocking the sweat glands, stopping the secretion of proteins and fatty acids. Most antiperspirants are made with aluminum salts like aluminum chloride, aluminum chlorohydrate or aluminum zirconium compounds. Since antiperspirants change the physiology of the body, they are actually considered an over-the-counter drug in the US and are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. Every antiperspirant sold in the US has a Drug Identification Number (DIN), denoted on the label.
Chronic aluminum exposure and neurotoxicity
In 1986, aluminum was first recognized as a neurotoxin in the USA. The US EPA has established a safe range for aluminum salts in public drinking water, which is 0.05 to 0.2 milligrams per liter.
In a 2010 publication of Neurotoxicology, researchers from the Department of Medicine at the University of California showed how extended exposure to aluminum salts causes neurotoxicity. In an animal model, aluminum was given at low levels to determine acceleration of brain aging. They found out that aluminum salts can increase levels of glial activation, inflammatory cytokines and amyloid precursor proteins within the brain. These increases are all indicative of accelerated brain aging. The aluminum salts effectively increased brain inflammation that is also present in Alzheimer's patients.
Remarkably, aluminum salts like aluminum zirconium are marketed as the active ingredient in many commercial antiperspirants. Aluminum zirconium makes up 15 percent or more of most commercial antiperspirants! The label often warn consumers that the product can cause kidney damage too. Here's an example antiperspirant label here.
Live Pure News
Lance D. Johnson, founder of Live Pure Body Care, is also the managing editor for all studies represented on this site. Lance has published hundreds of articles for top health news site NaturalNews.com and dozens of other syndicated publications.