The Nutrition In Eating Bugs

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nutrition in eating bugs

The advantages of eating insects are many. For one, insects are among the healthiest sources of proteins. For instance, 100 grams of cricket will give you 75.8 milligrams of iron, 12.9 gram of protein, and 121 calories. The best part about it is that only 49.5 calories are from the insect’s fat.

Additionally, if you want a source of protein that contains no carbohydrates, you should consider eating termites or silk warms. However, if you want a good source of protein, you should eat caterpillars. They pack 28 grams of protein from each 100 grams. They also contain thiamine, niacin, and iron.

Beef does contain the same level of protein as most insects. However, in terms of vitamin levels and iron, beef falls short. Additionally, some insects like crickets contain huge amounts of calcium, which is good for your bones.

Another reason to eat insects is that they are good for the environment. Farming beef requires huge amounts of resources and land. On the other hand, insects require very little amount of input. For instance, it takes about 100 units of feed to produce one unit of beef. Feeding insects, on the other hand, would produce four times as many units.

The next time you run out of food in your refrigerator, you should consider going out to your backyard. The outdoors is teeming with insect life that is being touted as a good source of protein in the future. Many researchers estimate that traditional source of protein will not be sufficient to feed the world in the future.

Let us examine the nutritional value of popular insects:

Crickets and Grasshoppers

You may not have thought of the grasshoppers hopping in your yard as a good source of nutrition. However, they are a great source of protein, for instance, a serving of about 4 ounces, contains about 25 grams of protein.

That is about 60 percent of all the protein that a woman requires every day. It represents about 40 percent of all a man’s daily protein needs. Grasshoppers are known to be a good source of unsaturated fats. These are the healthy kinds of fat that are needed for the body to function properly.  These fats can help you to lower the risk of heart disease.

Termites

If you are fond of using chemicals to get rid of termites, may its time you started to encourage them to breed more. A 4 ounce serving of these insects contains about 15 grams of protein. The termites will also supply your body with about 5.7 milligrams of iron; it represents about 70 percent of the daily iron intake needed by men. It also represents about 30 percent of all the iron that women need. Termites have also been known to provide a good amount of calcium to the body.

Beetles

Beetles are one of the best sources of protein according to researchers. However, the amount varies according to the beetle that you chose. A giant beetle, for instance, will contain about 20 gram for every 4-ounce serving. When you eat a June beetle, you will get about 13 gram of protein for the same serving.

On the other hand, a palmworm beetle will provide you with about 36 gram of protein for every 4-ounce serving. Like most insects, beetles are a great source of micronutrients such as iron, zinc, calcium, and many others. Thus, you should choose your beetle wisely.

Caterpillars

These are another great source of protein. Besides that, they also contain a high amount of other nutrients. One of the most nutritional types of caterpillars is the mopane. It contains about a quarter of all the potassium that your body requires daily. It also provides your body with all the copper that it needs to thrive.

There are Many Other Types

There are more than 1,000 insects consumed by people all around the world. The nutritional values usually vary by their habitat, their stage of development and the preparation style. In some place around the world, insects account for 10% of all protein consumed.

If you cannot stomach the idea of eating an insect, there are other ways to consume insects. One of the best alternatives is cricket flour. It can be substituted for the wheat flour you use at home.

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Megan is an experienced Nutritional Therapist in women’s nutrition, children's nutrition, pregnancy and fertility. She is a health/nutrition content writer and a published author.

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