What Is The Active Ingredient In Neem Oil?

Neem seeds contain neem oil, a naturally occurring insecticide.

tree. It is yellow to brown in color and smells and tastes nasty. It has

What are some products that contain neem oil?

Over 100 pesticide products employ neem oil and some of its refined constituents. They are used in a variety of

different types of plants and crops for bug control. Granules, dust, and wettable formulations of neem oil are possible.

Always adhere to label directions and take precautions to stay away from exposure. In the event of any exposures, make sure to adhere to the First

Pay close attention to the product label’s directions. Get in touch with the Poison Control Center at for additional treatment guidance.

How might I be exposed to neem oil?

through skin-to-skin and eye-to-eye contact. People are mostly exposed to neem oil because it is used on a range of crops.

their diet with neem oil. If users of neem oil breathe in the mist or dust created by the product, they could also become exposed.

fail to wash their hands before eating or smoking, or touch their skin. Nevertheless, the label contains instructions for storing.

low exposure For instance, the label can specify that applicators wear safety gear.

What are some signs and symptoms from a brief exposure to neem oil?

Skin and eye irritation with neem oil is possible. Azadirachtin, a substance

can be quite irritating to the skin and stomach because of neem oil. the remainder of

fatty acids, essential oils, and other regularly used materials make up neem oil.

Neem oil has been applied to cats in several nations to control fleas. Some negative

There have been reported reactions. Slowness of movement, excessive salivation, and

What happens to neem oil when it enters the body?

Fatty acids and glycerides make up clarified hydrophobic neem oil (without azadirachtin). These chemicals are

frequently present in meals. They are broken down, converted to energy, and integrated into the body when they enter.

In one experiment, azadirachtin was administered into insects. Within seven days, they discovered 90% of the dosage in the insect feces.

hours. 24 days after injection, the residual material remained in the bodies of the insects.

Is neem oil likely to contribute to the development of cancer?

No. Neem oil has been used by people for hundreds of years in a variety of ways. At this time, there was no connection with

There is an elevated risk of cancer. Neem oil did not modify or harm DNA, according to studies. In experiments in the lab,

Neem oil was fed to the animals for 90 days. They did not have higher cancer mortality rates.

Additionally, one study discovered that specific neem oil constituents induced cancer cells in hamsters to stop growing or die.

In another investigation, human prostate cancer cells were used. Neem leaf extract, according to research, has the ability to

Has anyone studied non-cancer effects from long-term exposure to neem oil?

In trials using rats, neither azadirachtin nor clarified hydrophobic neem oil had any effects on the animals.

Are children more sensitive to neem oil than adults?

In comparison to adults, kids may generally be more susceptible to pesticides. When neem oil was given to rats in one

their pregnancies ended due to studies. In a different experiment, rats were given azadirachtin as a constant food source. No

effects to their offspring were found. Neem oil is additionally utilized in traditional medicines, cosmetics, soaps, and toothpaste.

medicines available everywhere. As a result, neem oil is frequently exposed to people of all ages. No information to

What happens to neem oil in the environment?

There are 48 minutes to 4 days of half-life. It also degrades quickly on plant leaves; the half-life is one to two and a half days. the rest of

Can neem oil affect birds, fish, or other wildlife?

Birds, mammals, bees, and plants are essentially unaffected by neem oil’s toxicity. Fish and other aquatic life are slightly harmful to neem oil.

organisms. Fish and other aquatic creatures are mildly harmful to azadirachtin, an ingredient in neem oil. It is crucial.

to keep in mind that insects must consume the treated plant in order to die. Bees and other pollinators are not hence

What constitutes neem oil’s primary component?

Neem oil is used as an antibacterial, antifungal, insect repellant, and treatment for skin conditions in traditional medicine. Neem extracts were traditionally administered orally, vaginally, or topically. Neem oil primarily consists of triglycerides, steroids (campesterol, beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol), and many triterpenoids, the most well-known and extensively researched of which is azadirachtin. Neem oil’s azadirachtin concentration ranges from 300 parts per million (ppm) to over 2500 ppm, depending on the method of extraction used and the caliber of the crushed neem seeds.

There is no known specific remedy for neem oil poisoning, and stomach lavage is not advised either. The main focus of treatment is on symptoms. [6] The elderly man patient in our study who presented with vomiting, convulsions, metabolic acidosis, and encephalopathy had toxicity attributable to neem oil poisoning.

Laboratory results showed no signs of renal or hepatic problems in him. With symptomatic therapy, his symptoms subsided in 4 days, and he was released after 1 week.

Azadirachtin (C35H44O16), which inhibits the production of the electrochemical proton gradient, exhibits its toxicity likely through interfering with mitochondrial bioenergetics (primary form of energy generated in mitochondria). Muscle weakness, easy fatigue, hypotension, headache, face flushing, nausea, confusion, and exacerbation of latent cardiac angina are among the signs of acute poisoning with inhibitors of electron transporting complexes. Despite having a normal pO2, the inability to utilize oxygen manifests as a cytotoxic hypoxia in which the chemicals lead to metabolic acidosis and hyperpnea. However, it can be challenging to distinguish between metabolic syndrome caused by inhibitors of the electron transport chain and that caused by inhibitors of the supply of reducing substrates for the respiratory chain. [7]

How come azadirachtin is taken out of neem oil?

Due of their vulnerability to ultraviolet light (sunlight) degradation, azadirachtin and clarified hydrophobic extract of neem oil have short half-lives. Repeat applications are therefore frequently needed. Both substances have a low LD50 > 5,000 mg/kg toxicity to mammals and humans.

Neem oil is it a fungicide or a pesticide?

In the vegetable garden, neem oil serves as both a fungicide and a pesticide. It works on arthropod pests including tomato hornworms, maize earworms, aphids, and whiteflies that frequently consume your produce.

Neem oil also manages common fungus that develop on vegetable plants, such as:

  • Mildews
  • Rusts
  • leaf stains
  • Wilts
  • Rotten stem

Neem oil should be sprayed on vegetable plants twice—once at night and once in the morning. By spraying during these times, you can be sure that you are not harming any helpful insects, like bees, who are important for pollinating vegetable plants.

Which plants should not be exposed to neem oil?

I started using neem oil in my garden a few years ago to get rid of spider mites and aphids, and I’ve grown to adore it. I’ve had great success using neem oil, which naturally repels insects, especially when it comes to keeping the pests away from my tomato plants.

But I recently discovered a hard lesson: Neem oil simply isn’t a favorite among all plants. Thus, the issue arises: Which plants should you avoid using neem oil on?

Herbs like basil, caraway, cilantro, dill, marjoram, oregano, parsley, or thyme shouldn’t be sprayed with neem oil. Neem oil should only be sprayed sparingly on plants with fragile or wispy leaves, such as spinach, arugula, lettuce, and peas, to avoid burning the foliage.

Be careful while mixing and applying neem oil, though, as even hardier plants with tougher foliage might be scorched (or even killed) if you don’t.

Neem oil is made to cover a plant’s leaves and any invasive insects lurking among them in an oily film that will suffocate some insects and harm many others by damaging their cells. Neem oil is an oil, though, so even on a moderate day, if you ignore good advise and spray at the wrong times, you risk literally cooking the leaves of your plants.

In light of this, let’s look at a list of plants that tolerate neem oil, those that are sensitive to neem oil, and those that don’t actually require neem oil because they already ward off many of the most pesky bugs.

Neem oil: Is it harmful to human skin?

Neem oil is incredibly strong but safe. If you have sensitive skin or a skin condition like eczema, it could have negative effects on you.

If you’ve never used neem oil before, start by dabbing a small amount of it on a spot of skin far from your face. You may want to further dilute the oil or stop using it altogether if redness or irritation appear.

An allergic reaction could be indicated by hives, a severe rash, or trouble breathing. Neem oil usage should be stopped right away, and if your ailments worsen, you should see a doctor.

Children should not use neem oil due to its strength. Consult your doctor before applying neem oil to a child.

Neem oil should not be used if you are pregnant or nursing because there have been no studies done to determine whether it is safe to do so.

Is neem oil poisonous to people?

The neem tree, a swiftly expanding and remarkably resilient plant that is native to Asia, is the source of neem oil. The oil from the tree’s seeds is used for numerous beneficial purposes, including insect control. Neem oil has a low toxicity rating, making it less damaging to beneficial creatures like pollinators than many synthetic pesticides. Additionally, it is not poisonous to people. It’s still advisable to keep your distance from the eyes, though. As some neem oil products have additives that may irritate skin, prevent direct contact with the chemical unless you have carefully read the label and verified it is safe for skin.

Neem oil is widely known as an efficient natural pest control tool, but few gardeners take into account the numerous uses for this oil in the garden, on the lawn, and even within the home. Here are some neem oil uses for the garden, the house, and other areas.

What distinguishes neem oil from azadirachtin?

Because doing so reduces the possibility that pests will develop resistance to routinely applied chemical pesticides, some producers choose to alternate azadirachtin with other pesticides. Azadirachtin comes in a variety of forms, including sprays, cakes, water-soluble powder, and soil drenches.

Clarified hydrophobic extract of neem oil, often known as neem oil or neem oil extract, is the material that remains after azadirachtin is removed from neem oil.

Neem oil extract is less efficient against insects since it has a lower quantity of azadirachtin. Neem oil, in contrast to azadirachtin, is excellent against rust, powdery mildew, sooty mold, and other fungal diseases in addition to controlling insects.

Neem oil, which is not insecticidal, is occasionally added to soaps, toothpaste, cosmetics, and medications.

Is it possible to overuse neem oil on plants?

Numerous organic chemical components have been found in neem oil, as demonstrated by studies, however azadirachtin is by far its most significant component.

This naturally occurring substance doesn’t kill pests right away, but after ingesting it, it will interfere with their capacity to feed, molt, and breed, ultimately killing them within a week.

Bugs are also covered in a thin coating of oil by neem oil. If you spray adult, hard-bodied bugs with neem oil, such as leaf-footed bugs, squash bugs, and stink bugs, they will get irritated but usually not die. Aphids and spider mites, which have smaller, softer bodies, are more vulnerable to anything that covers them in oil, especially if they are in the nymph stage. The azadirachtin will kill them if the oil itself doesn’t.

Fortunately, the oil won’t harm helpful pollinators, and once it’s diluted, sprayed on plants, and exposed to sunlight and the environment, it will start breaking down swiftly.

Neem oil can be applied more than once every 4–7 days, although generally speaking, you shouldn’t do so to maximize its effectiveness.

In other words, if you apply neem oil every 1, 2, or 3 days, you’re using it excessively and risk causing your plants slow-moving, long-lasting harm.

Neem oil will cover the leaves, branches, and blossoms of your plants in a thin film of oil, which is why it is true.

As I mentioned above, this oily layer will begin to disappear within a few hours, but if you keep reapplying neem oil without timing your applications properly or separating them so that the oil completely degrades in between, you risk seriously harming your plant in two ways.

Foliage Burns

The most obvious approach to harm your plants with neem oil is in this manner. Neem oil will heat up if it is exposed to direct sunshine before it has had a chance to properly dry, just like the oil in your frying pan does when it is exposed to higher temperatures.

Neem oil will likely harm whatever leaves it comes in contact with once it has heated up, resulting in burns that appear as streaks, splotches, or even spots, as well as eventual leaf rot. If your plant has too much neem oil on it, you risk completely killing it by damaging too much of its foliage.

Neem oil spray applications should always be made in the early evening for the simplest way to prevent these issues. While the light is still bright enough for me to see clearly, I do this as it is setting. As a result, there is no doubt that the neem oil will have at least 10 hours to dry before the sun rises the next day.

I once neglected to apply neem oil in the evening and, against better judgment, chose to do so the following morning. I believed that by doing it early, it would dry before the sun could do any harm, preventing any scorching.

Fortunately, I had only lightly sprayed a few plants with neem oil, so they quickly recovered. However, I learned from the experience not to try to make up for missed neem oil applications the following morning. Simply wait until the suitable time the following day, then spray your plants.

Neem oil treatments frequently can result in unwanted side effects on three critical biological processes that all plants carry out in addition to the potential for foliage burns:


The process through which plants convert carbon dioxide, sunshine, and water into oxygen and carbohydrates is known as photosynthesis. However, the precise mechanism by which this happens is less well understood.

Simply put, stomata (or stoma if you’re referring to a single pore) are epidermal pores found in plants. By absorbing carbon dioxide from the environment, these tiny apertures are crucial to photosynthesis. The cells that surround each stoma serve as gatekeepers. When there is sufficient carbon dioxide in the plant, the cells close the stoma to momentarily slow or stop the flow; when there is insufficient carbon dioxide in the plant, the cells open the stoma to let more CO2 in.

Therefore, stomata are essential for photosynthesis. They don’t participate in the actual chemical reactions occurring inside the plant, but they do manage how much and how frequently carbon dioxide enters the plant, so regulating a crucial aspect of photosynthesis.


To take in carbon dioxide, stomata open, but in the process of doing so, they also lose something: water. Also in plenty. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, a single huge oak tree can transpire up to 40,000 gallons of water annually, compared to up to 4,000 gallons for an acre of maize.

The stomata control when and how much each plant transpires at any one time. Transpiration fluctuates depending on a wide range of conditions, including heat, humidity, wind speeds, and soil moisture, to mention a few.

Oxygen Release

When plants engage in photosynthesis, they draw carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and combine it with water to produce oxygen and carbohydrates using energy from sunshine. As an unneeded consequence of the photosynthetic process, they then expel the extra oxygen.

It should come as no surprise that these exchanges also happen through the plant’s stomatal openings, especially during the day. As a result, the open stomata serve two purposes: they let CO2 in while also enabling oxygen to escape.

Studies have demonstrated that anything that interferes with these stomatal routes would have a negative effect on plants, obstructing their biological functions and retarding their growth.

And this brings me to my concern with neem oil: if you spray neem oil too much and too often, you run the risk of coating and re-coating your plant’s leaves in oil, which could clog the stomata and impair the plant’s capacity to absorb carbon dioxide and release both water and oxygen.