Monday, June 30, 2014

Tip of the Month: Keeping Bugs at Bay Without the Toxic Spray, From Environmental Defence

Now that the warm weather is here most of us have unwanted contact with insects. I am careful to advise those with gluten sensitivity to avoid all chemical exposures especially for those chemicals where you have control over the purchasing and use of them. You don't want to add to your already copious amounts of toxin exposures, from the air you breath, the clothes you wear, the food you eat (avoid the "dirty dozen plus" and commercially fed meat products) and the water you drink. I've heard the number of new chemicals in our environment over the last 100 years is 84,000.

I believe the person with gluten sensitivity (GS) is much more susceptible to toxic overload because, one is nutrient deficient especially sulphur, and the enzymes that take care of toxins need a full complement of nutrients. And the GS person probably has MTHFR enzymes that are greatly affected and poorly functioning, also adding to the accumulation of toxins in the body. Once you stop eating gluten (a toxin)  it is a challenge to reverse these two main conditions in the GS person but it is possible. And depending on your other genes and phenotype, illness due to aggravation by toxins shows up as any number of diseases, eventually. 

The other day I was horrified to see a fellow natural doctor pick up a bottle of a popular pesticide to spray on a less than a quarter sized new wasp hive at their front door. I was horrified, because I thought they would know that using pesticides increases their risk for Parkinson's and other severe long term health issues.


How do I deal with wasp nests? I have been using my vacuum cleaner to take care of wasp nests for decades and it always works. By using the long pipe, I don't even have to get close to the nest and risk a sting. You may have to "vacuum" a few times, but then they relocate and stop building in your sensitive area. 

I also use the vacuum cleaner if there is a fruit fly infestation. Usually in August.

From Environmental Defence-(the bolds are mine)


photo credit: Image by Flickr user uncoolbob

With temperatures getting warmer outside, are you starting to notice some unwanted guests inside your home? In this instance, I am referring to bugs.

Now, like most green-minded people, you appreciate the role bugs have in the environment. But, if you don't want them crawling around your house, what can you do? You can find pesticides for most common household invaders at your local store, but they are normally full of nasty chemicals (Report from the Ontario College of Family Practice)  which are harmful to you (Report from Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment), and the environment in general.

Instead of buying a bottle of the chemical stuff, there are a few steps you can take to keep your home bug free, without harming your health and the environment at the same time.

1. Ants

If you spot ants in your home, first remove anything that could attract them such as crumbs on the counter, or a sticky jar of honey in the cupboard. If that doesn’t do the trick, then place cucumber slices at points of entry. Cucumbers are known to repel ants. If that doesn’t work “spice things up” by sprinkling cayenne pepper, chili pepper, black pepper, cinnamon, mint, cloves or garlic where you've seen ants and along your home’s foundation.

2. Mosquitoes

Summer and mosquitoes – you normally can't have one without the other. But there are a few natural ways to keep them at bay. First of all, remove any standing water sources from your backyard and keep your eavestroughs clean. Consider adding mosquito repelling plants, such as lemon balm and marigolds, to your garden. You can also make your own homemade mosquito repellent with essential oils and vegetable oil or apple cider vinegar.

3. Cockroaches

Diatomaceous earth (only the natural) is a known safer alternative to eliminating cockroaches in your home. It can be sprinkled where cockroaches hangout – such as on counter tops and behind appliances. It won't harm humans, however, cockroaches that come into contact with diatomaceous earth normally die within 48 hours. When applying the material, avoid inhaling the dust; it’s not toxic to people, but inhaling it can irritate. If you just want to repel the cockroaches, try leaving small satchels of catnip where you've seen cockroach activity, or simmer the catnip to create a tea that can be sprayed around the house.

4. Flies

A fly buzzing around a room can be hard to ignore sometimes. Flies don't like basil, so having a few basil plants in your home is a good deterrent (and you can use the basil for cooking!). You can also make your own natural fly paper to capture flies by using corn syrup, sugar and brown paper bags.

By taking the above steps, you can make sure, in a toxic-free way, that bugs won't be bugging you inside this summer. Stay tuned for next month when we'll share tips to keep bugs off your body when you're outside! Also, be sure to sign up for our Toxic Nation newsletter to receive toxics news and toxic-eliminating tips all year long.


I hope these tips help to make your "toxic bug spray free" life easier. 

To Your Health
Dr. Barbara

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