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Pesticides: Summer Bug Protection

MosquitoSummer is breeding time for bugs, which brings increased exposure to mosquitoes, ticks, and various stinging insects. How do we avoid the use of harsh chemicals and still protect our skin and our health?

With proper precaution and preparation, there's no reason you can't enjoy the great outdoors this summer!

Practical Tips

Before we look at applying and spraying, let's consider a few helpful tips for dealing with bugs:

  1. Do not wear fragrances. Bugs are already drawn to hormones, pheromones, and chemicals released in our sweat. No need to add any extra scents to attract them!
  2. Eat garlic and drink 1-2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar, as insects are repelled by these.
  3. Wear plenty of clothing. Keep well covered. Pull socks over pant cuffs. Avoid bright clothing.
  4. Shower quickly after exposure to bugs, especially ticks.
  5. When camping, throw sage, rosemary, and/or lemon balm leaves on the fire to reduce bugs.

Read more ...

Bug-Busting Bonanza

Whether invading your kitchen, attacking your garden, or infesting your pets, insects and other uninvited pests are a time-consuming nuisance and may even present a risk to your health. The strong chemicals found in most commercial bug-killers and repellents may further compromise the safety of your environment. So how can you win the war against pests and still keep your family safe? Consider our four R's of natural pest control: Remedies, Recipes, References, and Resources.

RemediesAll-Natural Pesticides

There are a myriad of natural pest-control options. It's often a trial-and-error process to find the right blend or product for your situation. Listed below are some potential pest remedies.

  1. Garlic and/or onion and/or cayenne. Liquid sprays can be made with any or all of these to help deter/kill pests inside and outside.
  2. Cedar is often used as a moth repellent, but is also effective against other pests.
  3. Diatomaceous earth (DE) consists of fossilized remains of diatoms, a type of hard-shelled algae. DE is effective against insects with an exoskeleton. Be sure to choose food grade.
  4. Pyrethrum. Pyrethrum powder comes from ground chrysanthemum flowers and contains pyrethrin, a natural pesticide. This is not the same as pyrethroid, which is a synthetic pesticide. (Cats are sensitive to low doses and some may be allergic to pyrethrum.)

Read more ...

Natural Lawn Care

Before looking at the non-chemical pest/weed control options, it's important to address this question: Are weeds necessarily "bad"?

Weeds such as dandelions offer tremendous health benefits, ranking in the top four green vegetables in overall nutritional value. Purslane tops the list of plants with omega-3 fats. Stinging nettle is difficult to handle, but the young leaves offer a multitude of minerals. See this website for a comprehensive list of these wild nutritional boosters.

Even with my "good weeds," how do I care for my lawn without the use of harsh chemicals? There are numerous resources dedicated to helping you provide a safe, attractive addition to your home.

Read more ...


"The entire time we lived in our (mold-infested) house the kitchen sponge would get musty smelling within 3-4 days. It was so strange. I had to buy a pack of sponges nearly every week."

– Anonymous

"I have been sick for almost 6 months now and doctors were not able to figure out why. I finally put it all together after going away for vacation for a week and suddenly my symptoms were going away."

– Anonymous

"Both of my sons went downhill quickly and coughed for months... They both lost their ability to read, had profound vision disturbances, and had phenomenal gastric issues."

– Lee

"In my moldy home if I left the wet clothes in the washer they would get musty very quickly and I'd have to re-wash... Sometimes I'd run a load, go to work, and they'd be musty when I returned that evening."

– Anonymous

"I knew it was mold, but doctors kept telling me I had anxiety. I was sitting in my office and could not remember who I was talking to, or what we were talking about."

– Brenda

"I was skeptical at first that these (natural cleaning) products would work, but they work better than the stuff I buy at the store! We will soon be moving to the personal care products as well!"

– Jennifer

"I've been living in a mold-infested home for 13 months... I was going CRAZY! Finally figured it out... Just a few days of recovering in a mold-free home and I feel AMAZING!!!"

– Lauren

"I started finding myself sitting on the floor in rooms of my house and not remembering how I got there, what I was doing before, or how long I had been there."

– Brenda

"The ERMI mold test as well as your helpful articles and Toxic Talk Tuesday programs have helped us avoid a terrible mistake in purchasing a new home."

– Angela

"My symptoms persisted and eventually turned into lethargy and depression. At the age of 26, I required a nap every evening after work."

– Jennifer

"My daughter has had many blood samples taken to test for everything imaginable and her doctor just seems puzzled. Everything comes back normal."

– Anonymous

" age 35 or 36 I started to become allergic to everything, and I got asthma at age 36... I went to doctor after doctor after doctor and was desperate for help, but nobody could help me."

– Mia

"Our family has been out of our home for 9 months due to mold... I am so scared and weak from all of this. We have lost friends; family members don't understand."

– Anonymous

"We all suffered from headaches, hormonal body temperature fluctuations, brain fog, fatigue, difficulty breathing, thrush, rashes, and yeast infections... we vacated our home two weeks ago."

– Anonymous

"We had some water leaks in our home... we never thought we needed to clean out and remove the floor, the ceiling, or the drywall... my two small children and I have remained constantly sick for years in this home."

– Mia

"I had been struggling with headaches, head fog, breathing difficulties (unable to get a full breath), constant scalp tingling, migraines, nausea, feeling spacey/detached, and severe itchy skin."

– Anonymous

"I'm new at this, but today I cleaned my bathroom with baking soda and vinegar. It's much better not having those strong chemical smells afterwards."

– Anonymous

"We were having a lot of health problems and had been to the doctor countless times... we had large circles of slimy greenish-black mold on the bathroom ceiling, where it had caved in a few months before."

– C.

"My daughter started having digestive problems... heart palpitations... coughing episodes... muscle/joint pain... asthma/allergies... Her doctor finally advised me to check for mold in our home."

– Anonymous

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