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Natural Awakenings Ann Arbor Michigan

Avoid the Sunburned, Mosquito-Ridden Summertime Blues

May 31, 2019 02:00AM
by Emily Herron

Summertime is beginning in Michigan; school is out and vacations are imminent. Summer is a wonderful time here in the mitten, but it does come with some baggage; sunburn and bug bites, mainly.

The sun is a great healing tool for the body and we do need it to live, but overexposure can lead to sunburn, which isn’t great for our health. At time of year we start to see everyone get out their Neutrogena SPF 50, but think first before applying this toxic cream on ourselves or our children, because most sunscreens contain a high amount of toxic chemicals that are very harmful to our health such as oxybenzone, a hormone disruptor that can be harmful to our Great Lakes ecosystem.

There are plenty of great options when it comes to natural sunscreens, Badger, Beautycounter, and Rainbow Bee. Thrive Wellness Center carries Rainbow Bee, a homemade sunscreen that contains all-natural ingredients and goes on without leaving any white residue and smells nice. Another essential aspect of absorbing the sun properly is making sure we consume enough essential fatty acids that enables the body to use the sun’s rays so that they don’t cause a burn. Essential fatty acids, which are essential to our diet because our bodies cannot produce these on its own, can be found in avocados, nuts, seeds, eggs, animal fat, and grass-fed butter. Sun is also great because it stimulates production of vitamin D, a fat-soluble vitamin.

Then there are our great friends the mosquitoes. These little buggers can cause all sorts of irritation and swollen stings, and some people have a more severe reaction than others. Most bug repellents contain harmful chemicals that absorb right in to the blood stream, like sun screen, and disturb our natural hormone levels. For example, a chemical found in most bug sprays called DEET can cause an allergic reaction when applied on the skin, it also can interfere with brain function and cause fatigue.

Some better options for bug repellent include the brand Badger, and also an easy homemade recipe. This recipe can be contained in a glass spray bottle.

½ cup witch hazel ½ cup apple cider vinegar 40 drops of eucalyptus, lemongrass, citronella, tea tree, rosemary or a mix

Then we will know exactly what is in the bug repellent. Lavender essential oil is great for bites and burns. Use it topically alone or with a carrier oil like coconut oil. Thrive carries Young Living Essential Oils that don’t contain any extra additives.

Summer is meant to be enjoyed and to make memories. Now soak up every moment of summer goodness.


Emily Herron is a practitioner at Thrive Wellness. For more information, visit


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