Health Works: How to keep the mosquitoes at bay

Nothing ruins a backyard barbecue more than mosquitoes.

But keep this in mind, mosquitoes savor certain scents that may make you a more likely target.

 For example, mosquitos can sniff out carbon dioxide in your breath more than 100 feet away, but there are other smells they love. 

"Interestingly, mosquitoes are not only attracted to our body odor," said Dr. Jennifer Lucas from the Cleveland Clinic. "But the things we use to mask that body odor including fragrances, deodorants, and things that are scented." 

Mosquitoes use scent as their signal that a human target is within striking distance. So, perfumes and colognes - especially floral scents - may create some chemistry with you and the blood-sucking bugs.

Mosquitoes also love limburger cheese and beer. The main ingredient in the cheese is a bacterium found on the human foot and studies show people with beer in their bloodstream end up with more bites.

But if you really want to make the mosquitoes mind their own business - lay off on the lotion.

Lucas says many skin care products contain lactic acid, which mosquitoes love.

"Mosquitoes are attracted to lactic acid and some of the products that we use for rejuvenating purposes have alpha hydroxy acids in them," Lucas said. "And this is an attractant to mosquitoes."  

Mosquitoes also like the smell of body odor and worn socks, so be sure to shower and do the laundry before you head to your Memorial Day cookout. 

Here's a trick from our Fox 2 producer Aaron Boast, buy some dry ice and put it in a far away corner. It will attract some mosquitoes. and just in case that doesn't work, keep the bug spray with Deet on hand. 
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