THE SECRETS OF CITRONELLA: CHEMICAL FOCUS

1 Posted by - December 20, 2016 - Oil Science

Although citronella essential oil is widely known for its ability to naturally repel insects, it offers many more health benefits. Citronella’s fresh scent, which is the result of its array of chemical constituents, including citronellic acid and methyl isoeugenol, also makes it a favorite of aromatherapists and natural healers. The following examines several of citronella’s top health and beauty benefits, which are largely caused by two of its main ingredients.

 

Citronellic Acid

Since 1948, citronella has been registered in the United States as a gentle, plant-based insect repellant, a property that is largely attributed to the levels of citronellic acid it contains [1]. Researchers have found that is particularly effective at repelling Aedes aegypti mosquitos, a dangerous breed that can spread dengue fever. It does this by masking human scents, such as carbon dioxide and lactic acid, that are so attractive to insects [2]. While most people don’t realize it citronella oil has been touted as a practical preventive for malaria for more than 70 years because of its mosquito repellant activity [3].

Additionally, it has been shown to repel lice, fleas, and body louse from the body.

 

Methyl Isoeugenol

Methyl isoeugenol is a significant factor in citronella oil’s antibacterial properties by successfully killing existing bacteria and preventing further bacteria growth in the body [4]. A variety of studies have found this essential oil is especially helpful in treating infections in the bladder and urinary tracts, prostate, kidneys, stomach, intestines, and wounds.

Methyl isoeugenol’s bacteria fighting ability is also why it is a common ingredient in all-natural cleaning products.


[1] https://draxe.com/citronella-oil/

[2] https://www.mosquitnoband.com/how-does-citronella-keep-bugs-away/

[3] https://books.google.com/books?id=qc9UAQAAQBAJ&pg=PA147&lpg=PA147&dq=citronella+oil+repel+methyl+isoeugenol&source=bl&ots=zXHEyJ0vIc&sig=OaHQoTZUb7KEnS6715XFWOX-Q30&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjspI-J-fPQAhUENSYKHc4mCk8Q6AEIPDAG#v=onepage&q=citronella%20oil%20repel%20methyl%20isoeugenol&f=false

[4] https://draxe.com/citronella-oil/

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