Diseases from Poor Sanitation

Diseases Poor Sanitation

Have you ever walked into a bathroom and felt privileged? Have you ever acknowledged how lucky you are to have clean water and a toilet that disposes of your waste? 2.3 billion people do not have access to adequate sanitation. 650 million people live without safe water. The diseases from poor sanitation can be altering. Fortunately, these diseases and deaths are preventable. Simple solutions such as cleaner water and access to soap can make a world of difference.

Diseases from Poor Sanitation

One of the effects of poor sanitation is disease. Some of the most common are diarrhea, cholera, arsenicosis, typhoid, and neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Neglected tropical diseases are a diverse group of communicable diseases that prevail in tropical and subtropical conditions in 149 countries. They affect populations living in poverty, without adequate sanitation and in close contact with infectious vectors and livestock. These include: guinea worm disease, buruli ulcer, trachoma, and schistosomiasis.

Trachoma is the leading cause of infectious blindness in the world. It is caused by ocular infection with the bacterium, Chlamydia trachomatis. It is endemic in fifty-one countries and is responsible for the visual impairment of 1.8 million people with 0.5 million being irreversibly blind. Infection spreads through personal contact such as hands and clothes. It thrives in living conditions that are crowded, lack adequate sanitation, and where flies are considerably present.

Diarrhea is the most important public health problem directly related to water and sanitation. It is caused by a variety of microorganisms including viruses, bacteria, and protozoans. About 4 billion cases of diarrhea cause 1.8 million deaths per year. Over ninety percent, or 1.6 million, are among children under the age of five.

Buruli ulcer is a chronic debilitating skin and soft tissue infection that can lead to permanent disfigurement and disability. It has been reported in thirty-three countries with tropical, subtropical, and temperate climates such as Africa, South America, and Western Pacific regions. Countries such as Japan, China, and Australia have not seen cases of buruli ulcer. Most patients are under the age of fifteen and at least eighty percent of cases detected early can be cured with a combination of antibiotics.

Cholera is an acute, diarrheal caused by the infection of the intestine with the bacterium Vibrio Cholerae. Cholera is usually found in water or food sources that have been contaminated by feces from a person infected with cholera. Cholera is mainly found in places with inadequate water treatment, poor sanitation, and inadequate hygiene. Around 3-5 million people cases and over 100,000 deaths occur each year around the world. Cholera is a major cause of diarrhea throughout the developing world. A global pandemic in Asia, Africa, and Latin America has been ongoing for the past four decades.

The Worlds Sanitation

About forty percent of the world’s population lacks adequate sanitation practices including access to a proper toilet. Open defecation in streets and fields causes bacteria and microbes that can seep into the groundwater and contaminate it. Thus, this can lead to deadly diseases such as diarrhea. The numbers below are from the World Health Organization/UNICEF joint monitoring program.

  • India- 818 million
  • China- 607 million
  • Indonesia- 109 million
  • Nigeria- 103 million
  • Pakistan- 98 million
  • Bangladesh-75 million
  • Ethiopia- 71 million
  • Dominic Republic of Congo- 50 million
  • Brazil-39 million
  • Tanzania- 32 million
  • Sudan-27 million
  • Kenya- 27 million
  • Vietnam-22 million
  • Phillipines-22 million
  • Nepal-20 million
  • Ghana-20 million

The reasons for a lack of sanitation vary greatly depending on the area, people, situation, and etc. However, some common causes of poor sanitation can be: lack of clean water, lack of proper toilet, infrastructure (no adequate sewage system), lack of resources (being able to afford access to proper sanitation such as toilets, soap, etc.), knowledge (no knowledge of proper sanitation practices), little government involvement, and etc.

Preventing Sanitation Based Disease

The effects of poor sanitation can be deadly and may seem like an uphill battle, but all is not lost. Organizations such as Osana have developed a simple solution to help curb the sanitation based illness crisis: soap. Soap can be a game changer and lifesaver in this war on health. Actions as simple as washing your hands not only prevent the spread of disease, but also can cut diarrheal diseases by thirty-sex percent.

Furthermore, soap is a cost effective way to make a big difference in countries that lack sanitation. Besides hand washing, soap can be a cleaning agent in regard to personal hygiene as well. Regular baths with Osana mosquito repellant soap can also help reduce mosquito borne diseases such as malaria, which causes about one million child deaths.

Proper sanitation and hygiene do not have to be a lost cause. With the proper knowledge, action, and soap, the citizens of said countries can live a healthier and cleaner life. Soap may not solve all the sanitation problems of the world, but it is a step in the right direction that can make a difference and restore dignity.

Reggie Lemmen Osana soap bar mosquito-repellent

Donating Mosquito Repellent Soap to those affected by Hurricane Dorian

Reggie Lemmen Osana soap bar mosquito-repellent

Osana recently donated our Mosquito Repellent Soap to those affected by Hurricane Dorian. We shipped over 500 bars to friends Reggie Lemmen and Ronna Mason and with the assistance of their local Sebring Elks Lodge, participated in the collection of supplies destined for the Bahamas.

Osana Soap is safe for the entire family, smells great, and really works! Our Natural Mosquito Repellent is safe for the entire family, smells great, and really works!

You can help those affected by disasters like Hurricane Dorian by heading over to the Red Cross website and making a donation!

Wash Off the Bait - Mosquito Repellent Soap

Wash OFF Their Bait!

Wash Off The Bait with Osana Mosquito Repellent Soap

Wash Off the Bait - Mosquito Repellent Soap

Mosquito repellent resistance is becoming more and more of a thing. Studies have shown 50% of mosquitoes can be immune to DEET after being exposed to it. A cocktail of various toxic bug sprays is no silver bullet either (doing so however can repel your loved ones and possibly result in you getting sprayed down with the garden hose).

During this wet season, the best chance for avoiding the buzz and bite of mosquitoes is to wash off the attractants and replace them with repellents.

One of the biggest problems with mosquito sprays is that they don’t do anything to wash off the mosquito attractants that your body naturally produces and the bacteria that hangs out on your skin. Bug sprays try to cover up the odors, and some do a better job than others, but it’s like covering a steak in dirt and putting it in front of your dog. Sure, the dog won’t enjoy the dirty steak, but you better believe he’ll dig through a pile of that dirt to get at what he wants.

Your first step toward hiding from mosquitoes should be to wash off the smells that draw them in. If washing off odors doesn’t hide you enough from mosquitoes, you could be a genetic mosquito magnet or be suffering from a mosquito zombie apocalypse, and you’re going to need to combine your mosquito repellency options.   Bottom line is the best strategy is to remove those attractants, evaluate if you need additional protection, and then find the healthiest option possible.

But keeping the attractants on your skin is NOT a solid strategy for keeping mosquitoes away.

Time and again, we have found that washing with Osana prevented bug bites, and created a preference by mosquitoes for those who had skin and body odor attractants compared to those who didn’t.  We won’t hold it against you if don’t share the secret of Osana Soap with others!

Right now we’re offering a pre-season sale of our Master Pack with Free Shipping. You can check it out right here.  

Mosquito Chikungunya Virus

Why Do Mosquito Bites Itch?

Mosquito Chikungunya Virus

It would be one thing if mosquitoes simply flew around your face and fearlessly endeavored to suck your blood all the livelong day, but why do mosquito bites itch so much? We breakdown the science for you below!

When a mosquito chomps down on your big toe, it pierces through your skin in order to draw blood with its straw-like mouth, which is called a proboscis, in case you were wondering. During this process, the Dracula of insects injects a bit of its own saliva, which contains an anticoagulant. This prevents your blood from clotting around the proboscis, thereby cementing the insect on your big toe with its mouth still in your flesh. Fun, right?

The wonder that is your immune system recognizes that this mosquito saliva does not belong in your big toe, or anywhere else in your body for that matter. So, your body attacks it, releasing histamine, which causes smooth muscles to contract and capillaries to dilate in order to dispel the mosquito saliva. It’s this histamine reaction that causes the unpleasant itching.

So, it’s not really the mosquito’s bite that causes our big toes to itch, but rather it’s our bodies’ response to the bite. A bittersweet relationship indeed…

This incredible response system is also the reason why the saliva injection site swells and becomes red: because the histamine makes those blood capillaries enlarge.

However, not everybody necessarily notices these effects of swelling or even the itch. According to Dr. Day, a medical entomologist at the University of Florida in Vero Beach, over time adults may develop a tolerance to mosquito bites. Personally, I have yet to experience this tolerance or encounter anyone with this wildly useful superpower. But here’s to hoping!

Until that day comes, though, we still have Osana’s All-Natural Mosquito Repelling Soap to protect us from the dreaded mosquito bite, the itchiness that follows and also the diseases that can tag along with it!

Works Cited:
Rabin, Roni Caryn. “Ask Well: Why Do Mosquito Bites Itch?” The New York Times. The New York Times, 03 June 2016. Web. 30 Sept. 2016.

Travel Hacks

Travel Hacks


Do you want to find travel hacks for absolutely everything?

Are you the type of person who wants to save money on essentially every aspect of the travel experience?

There is so much information out there about where to travel, when to travel, when to book your tickets, what sites to use, etc. It’s crazy! And truthfully, it can be more than a little overwhelming to keep everything straight.

So, we have put together a short and concise list of the best pages to visit when you’re determined to be a savvy traveller.

  1. First, we’d like to suggest Kayak's 7 Tips For Finding the Lowest Fare Possible. These tips are handy to pretty much everybody.
  2. From finding low fares and cheap food to inexpensive local transportation, Lifehacker's Ultimate Travel Hacking Guide is a great place to start.
  3. Are you a student, or know a student about to spread their wings abroad? Then the Student Travel Planning Guide may be perfect for you.
  4. Are you a hoarder with a propensity for over-packing? This life changing chart from Just Imagine may just help you lose those few pounds from your suitcase and avoid overweight baggage charges.
  5. Traveling with itty bitties? If you’re traveling with children, then these 10 creative hacks from Parenting Magazine may be worth a gander.
  6. In need of some general travel hack advice? These 11 travel hacks and tips let you in on the secrets of surviving long flights, packing your clothes for each day, and so much more!

And as always, before you travel, make sure you are informed as to the health alerts in the area AND that you are properly prepared with an effective, all natural mosquito repellent!

Safe travels and stay safe!


Hide in Plain Sight - Osana Mosquito Repellent Soap

Wash Off--Wax on! A Ninja's Guide to Hiding in Plain Sight

Wash Off - Wax On! A Ninja's Guide to Hiding from Mosquitoes!

Did you know that mosquitoes can smell you from up to 200 feet away? They detect the carbon dioxide that we breathe out, then make their way to us. Your body is covered in bacteria, hormones, and odors that mosquitoes love. A recent study even showed that some mosquito species have genetically adapted to smell and bite humans! Mosquitoes in South America that carry the Zika virus are drawn to the smells of the bacteria in ankles and feet. Below is a heat map from a study showing the diversity of bacteria on two specific individuals after not washing for 3 days (a man and a woman). The more red the area is, the more bacteria diversity exists in that area. Mosquitoes are attracted to the odors that come out of the interactions of these bacteria with your body’s sweat.

Heatmap of Bacteria on your body - repel mosquitoes by washing away attractants

While traditional bug spray’s scorched-earth-policy makes mosquito landing sites too toxic to land on, it doesn’t do anything to reduce the presence of bacteria or remove the odors that mosquitoes love. As you can see by the image above, there are bacteria all over your body. This is why mosquitoes keep buzzing around you looking for a place they can land! You are an attractive smorgasbord of scents. News flash: You missed a spot!

The best way to get rid of the buzz and bites is to wash off the odors AND replace them with safe and natural mosquito repellants. Finally you can hide in plain sight and keep mosquitoes in the dark! With Osana Soap this balanced method is the most scientifically effective technique for preventing mosquitoes from swarming around you.

This Christmas, a great dinner conversation piece is the question: “Which would you rather have at a backyard party: “One mosquito bite or one mosquito buzzing six inches from you for two hours?”

Is the buzz worse than the bite? Like the annoying sibling I’m-not-touching-you-game?

Send us a message on Facebook and let us know where you land!

Ghana Children Playing in Water

Natural Mosquito Repellent Helps Hour of Grace Ghana

Not too long ago, a non-profit that Osana partners with, Hour of Grace in Ghana sent this testimonial back in February of 2017 after a volunteer brought 520 bars of natural mosquito repellent soap down with her and personally give them to those that were in desperate need. We thought it was so good we'd share it on our blog! Enjoy!

I frequently volunteer with Hour of Grace Orphanage in Ghana and when I brought them Osana soap the first time, the three smallest children were constantly sick with malaria. The soap very much served its original purpose, and when I went back the second time, there were no crazy fevers or vomiting.

Another really awesome thing is the sanitation it provides. Children who had 10 and 11 ringworm spots only had one or two if they even had any at all when I returned. It was truly a joyful moment to see how clean they were.

When I gave the soap out, I tried to stress how important it is for their health in addition to their nets and how it works. When I went back, I tried to talk to as many kids as I could one on one and get them to show me that they still had their soap. So it is a good opportunity to educate the people it's given to.

I was nervous about getting a "soap again" reaction from the kids (because they're kids), but because they could really see the difference, It helped to make being malaria free an exciting thing, and they knew how important it was, they were so happy to get more. ~Courtney from Osana Bar

Also, the kids at Hour of Grace have something to say!

Osana Mosquito Repellent Soao

REI Co-Op Innovator Series

Osana Mosquito Repellent Body Wash
Osana Bar All-Natural Mosquito Repellent Soap

Thanks for considering Osana for your Innovator Series! Below you’ll find our 3 minute video for our submission!

Also, here is a quick 1 minute overview on Osana.

osana soap that saves

Great American Survival

Great American Survival with Natural Mosquito Repellent Soap

As Osana continues to grow, we are more and more encouraged to hear the testimonials and reviews we receive from all over the world. We have been on a mission to collect stories about the effectiveness of Osana in different climates and environments. Check out this real video review below from fellow Osana soap enthusiast, Marvin of Great American Survival:

We love this very detailed review about how Osana is really an everyday soap that's safe for the whole family AND how Osana can help prevent one of the most preventable diseases today. Great American Survival are outdoor enthusiasts that love God and all the natural wonders he has created. You can check out more of their videos on their YouTube Channel or their website, greatamericansurvival.com.

Thanks, Marvin!

Become a Conscious Consumer This Summer

Last year we told you about some great companies that give backHarry’s, Charity:Water, State Bags, Life Straw, Thread Experiment…  They have gifts that keep on giving, and we love companies that use their platform to make a positive impact in the world!


Why do we share these things with you?  It’s important!  You will be buying that gift for your grads and dads or that new backpack for your summer adventures anyway.  So why not put your money where your values are?


When you put a little extra effort and care into your shopping, you can enjoy that refreshing drink knowing that you helped provide clean water for a child who needed it.  You can rest a little better on your new sheets knowing that someone else has a clean bed to sleep in that night thanks to you.  You can enjoy your shower every morning that much more knowing that someone somewhere else in the world is malaria free because you switched to Osana.


Take it one step further and think about who is making the products you enjoy.  Are they being treated justly?  Do they receive a fair wage for their work?  Love how fabulous you look and feel in that new organic cotton shirt knowing that a woman was empowered to feed her children when she got home from a long day of work making it.


This is how the world changes; this is how you can change the world.

Here are a few more places to start your journey to becoming a #ConsciousConsumer:

terralite:  Want some summery scents for your home?  This company has all the candles, mist, and oils you need.  Terralite only use fair trade certified coconut oil – better for the producers and the planet – and biodegradable and recyclable packaging.   Every time you buy from them, 1% of the sale goes to different environmental products around the world.

Matr Boomie:  Matr Boomie has a wide variety of products benefitting a wide variety of projects.  You can get a journal to record all of your summer adventures while helping a child get an education, or a bag for your yoga mat that helps fund one of their medical projects.

LOT 2545:  If you’re looking for that perfect summer accessory, they’ve got you covered.  LOT 2545 employs a group of formerly exploited women who make beautiful paper bead jewelry and accessories.  These women are paid a fair wage, and then the rest of the profit goes toward getting teenage boys off the streets of Uganda and into school, jobs, and a home.

Good Paper:  We all send cards to loved ones.  For their birthdays, anniversaries, or just because.  Purchasing these greeting cards helps women escape sex trafficking in the Philippines and young adults orphaned by disease in Rwanda.

Use Osana to Protect Your Pets

Protect your furry friends!

Believe it or not, mosquitos love our pets just as much as they love us.  Just like in humans, a mosquito bite for animals can result in an everything from an irritating itch to a parasitic disease.  According to Hartz, the biggest concern caused by mosquitos for dogs is heartworm disease.

DEET is the main ingredient in most mosquito repellents, but it is definitely not the way to protect our furry friends.  We hate putting that concoction on ourselves or our children.  (With good reason, too.  DEET can actually melt plastic!)  So why would we use it on our pets?

Happy Dog

If our furry friends are even exposed to DEET, it can cause skin irritation, vomiting, and even seizures.  [Source: BarkPost]  Think about this: cats and dogs and many other animals clean themselves by licking their own fur.  Imagine if they ingest this toxic chemical!  (Another reason not to use it on yourself either – no dog kisses!)


Luckily, Osana is made with all natural ingredients and is pet-friendly.  Use Osana on your furry family members (and the rest of them) for all camping, hiking, and any other fun outdoor adventures.  #MosquitosSuck, but your pet’s summer doesn’t have to.

The First #BiggerStory Winner


Our First #BiggerStory Winner!


Congratulations to our first winner of a year’s supply of Osana soap, Tommy Wisk!


Tommy has been kind enough to share his adventures using Osana soap and his #BiggerStory with us.  Tommy embodies what Osana encourages our supporters to do every day and what it means to make your actions count.


June 2017 #BiggerStory Winner


Our new friend chose to make his vacation count and has been serving communities in the Dominican Republic where “the people are friendly, and the mosquitos are friendlier”.  We get the joy of working hard to make life just a little easier for others, and that’s exactly what our new friend Tommy has been doing for the past year.  He has been building concrete floors, helping with reforestation, and making soap to help others.


Tommy told Osana that he began searching for alternative solutions to mosquito repellent as Zika alerts began to arise so he would not have to resort to toxic sprays.  “I purchased some of your soap and have been very satisfied with the results.  I bring it with me and use it each time I travel to the Caribbean.  I also tell everyone about it because I have never been bitten by a mosquito during any of my trips over the past year.”


Tommy, we are so glad you’ve had a great experience using Osana soap.  Now you’ll have plenty for you next trip to serve others.  Thank you for all you do and for being a part of a #BiggerStory!