Cool drinks, hot bodies – and mosquitoes. Unfortunately, summer doesn’t just have pleasant vibes, it also opens the door to many buzzing troublemakers.
So the question arises, how can you show the red card to annoying insects in a very clever way? With a classic cocktail that not only tastes great, but may even provide peace and quiet: Gin & tonic!
How is this so?
In a nutshell, the essential juniper oils and the quinine extracted from the bark of the cinchona tree in a gin & tonic will probably do you a lot better than the mosquito.And with that you are in the finest tradition, as a glance at history proves.
Very British: Hot and cool at the same time
During the British colonial period the British were controlling many tropical areas and subsequently fell victim to the malaria mosquito.Now malaria with fatigue, fever, vomiting and cramps was not necessarily one of the pleasant aspects of colonial life and was fought attentively.
A very popular and comparatively proven remedy was the combination of water and quinine: this is an analgesic bitter substance, which was mainly administered in tablet form and washed down with water. Lo and behold, tonic water was born.Because quinine with water alone still tastes incredibly bitter, the ever-resourceful British came up with the idea of adding gin – Voilà, the gin & tonic was born!
What makes the mixture of gin and tonic water so unbeatable?
Quinine is, as already stated, extracted from the bark of the cinchona tree. Contrary to its name, it originally comes from the highlands of South America – but has been brought to worldwide attention in medicine.The reason for this is obvious and comprehensive: quinine alleviates pain, reduces fever, anaesthetizes and helps with muscle cramps. Great for people.
But there is also something that fights the mosquitoes: after all, gin is not necessarily what a mosquito comprehends as “delicious.” The essential oils of the juniper have always driven away the small, nasty stingers. So it’s no wonder that the gin smell is also used in anti-mosquito candles.Together, quinine and juniper are potentially good for you, but not the bloodsucker – sounds like a win-win situation!
Peace, joy, free drink?
Admittedly, at first it sounds as if the regular consumption of gin & tonic will be the end of all mosquito bites. However, the whole possibility has a small catch.
On the one hand, scientists have found that today’s gin & tonic contains too little quinine to have a truly effective result. In addition, there are now much more effective malaria drugs.
But if you are not suffering from heart or liver disease, a refreshing gin & tonic will certainly not harm you from time to time. The smell and taste of juniper is known to be preserved in a modern gin & tonic and the local mosquitoes don’t like it any more than their malaria spreading cousins in the tropics.
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