Becky Yates, 40, from Blackheath loves to travel abroad, especially the Greek Islands, but she has a problem… every time she goes there, she is bitten by mosquitoes… not just a few but dozens. In fact, in 2002, she counted 56 insect bites over her body.
“They swell up like golf balls and become infected,” she explains. “I look and feel terrible. If I am bitten around the ankles, they swell up so badly, I can’t get my trainers on.”
In 2003, Becky travelled to Greece with a spray of citronella, tea tee oil and some plug-in atomisers, but nothing seemed to work and yet again she was forced into the local chemist to coat her numerous bites in iodine.
2004 brought about a change of strategy, as a friend recommended she take vitamin B1. At her local health food store, she bought Viridian’s High One B-Complex.
“This time I was off to Zante. I took two capsules of the High One B-Complex every day for two weeks before I travelled and carried on taking them right through the holiday,” explains Becky. “I came back to the UK with just six small bites. I was delighted! The thing that really convinced me was that everyone else in the hotel was complaining about the mosquitoes, I was the only one who didn’t suffer!”
Vitamin B1, also known as thiamine is a very safe, non-toxic vitamin. Some studies suggest that taking large doses of thiamine is effective in reducing mosquito bites. This vitamin apparently produces a skin odour that is not detectable by humans, but is disagreeable to pregnant mosquitoes (Pediatric Clinics of North America, 16:191, 1969). It seems to be especially effective for hypersensitive allergic individuals. Thiamine takes about 2 weeks before the odour fully saturates the skin.
Viridian’s High One B-Complex is available from selected independent health food stores in the UK and internationally.
Cheryl Thallon is director of Viridian Nutrition, the leading brand of ethical vitamins. The Viridian Nutrition range of more than 130 vitamins, minerals, herbs, amino acids, nutritional oils, tinctures and ointments is available from selected indepentdent health food stores in the UK and internationally.
Viridian has won numerous awards for the company’s commitment to ethics and the environment. More than 40% of the range is organically produced and certified by the Soil Association. Viridian has a charity donation programme and has so far donated in excess of £60,000 to children’s and environmental charities.