Did You Know?


Research indicates that mosquitoes are attracted to people who have recently eaten bananas.

Research indicates that mosquitoes are attracted to people who have recently eaten bananas.

You may have heard that eating bananas will attract mosquitoes to you and make you more apt to be bitten. Or maybe you’ve heard the opposite, that eating bananas, or just having bananas around, will repel mosquitoes. Both rumors are going around. The one claiming that eating bananas will make you more likely to get bitten is the more common one, it seems, and the explanation is usually that when your body processes the banana, the scent comes out on your skin and makes you more attractive to mosquitoes.

Bananas are such a tasty summertime treat and are also full of potassium that helps replace the electrolytes you lose when you sweat, so it would be a shame to have to give them up during mosquito season. Are the rumors really true?

The problem is that mosquitoes aren’t predictable. Many things may make them bite more or less–the temperature, the color clothes you’re wearing, other scents or things you’ve eaten. So people who’ve eaten bananas may sometimes report more bites, when it’s coincidentally for another reason, while others may report less bites, again, for a different reason. Usually, the way to overcome such difficulties is to perform scientific studies where the variations are controlled for, but when it comes to bananas, there doesn’t seem to be much published on the topic.


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