Bugged by eating the same old things? Well, then. . . .
If you can get past the thought of eating something you normally would squash like, well, a bug, then you might want to sample a creepy, crawly critter or two.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations says there are nearly 2,000 edible insect species in the world – and many of them are packed with protein, fiber, good fats and vital minerals. While many cultures around the globe regularly consume insects as part of their diets, Western countries tend to lag — and gag — at the idea.
David Horne, owner of Horne’s Pest Control, says he never has eaten bugs – intentionally, anyway – other than crickets contained in protein bars. “They say that the average person in their lifetime will eat about eight pounds of bugs, though,” he says. “The human body can digest proteins and nutrients in bugs more efficiently than those in beef.”
As the world population and the cost of food production continue to escalate, Horne says, “Americans aren’t going to be able to eat steak and pork chops forever. The trend of eating bugs is inevitable.”
So what do insects taste like? Better than you think, fans say. According to these munchers, many have distinctive flavors:
Ants: nuts and beef jerky
Agave worms: sunflower seeds
Tree worms: pork rinds
Bee egg, larvae and pupal stages: bacon
Wasps: pine nuts
Grasshoppers: peanuts and chicken
Pond/water flies: duck and fish
Scorpions: beef jerky
Tarantula legs: chicken wings
Giant water bug: salted bananas
Chocolate-dipped, powdered, fried or dried, experts say edible insects are winging and crawling their way into America’s food chain and can give us a “leg up” on nutrition.
So this summer, when you’re swatting away those pesky bugs, you might want to think about adding them to your diet instead.