Prolonged contact with household insecticides, including roach and mosquito killers, may contribute to autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus—two of the most common autoimmune disorders—according to a recent study from the National Institute of Health Sciences. Researchers examined data from a previous study of almost 77,000 postmenopausal women ages50 to 79 and found that those who reported applying insecticides or mixing them had a higher risk of developing the two autoimmune disorders than women who reported no insecticide use. Look for natural alternatives to chemical insecticides. Although they too can be toxic, they may be less harmful because they break down quickly into nontoxic compounds; these include neem oil, nicotine, pyrethrum, and rotenone.