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This bug juice has more antioxidants than orange juice

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

bug juice

Story at-a-glance -

  • A study focused on the composite nutrition of 12 commercially available edible insects found the water-soluble substances from grasshoppers, silkworms and crickets had the highest antioxidant capacity, five times higher than orange juice
  • Crickets had additional nutritional power, containing a complex array of proteins and unique fiber to balance your gut microbiome and increase metabolic enzymes associated with gut health
  • Multiple cultures embrace insects as a food source, but Americans have not been quick to embrace the practice. David Mela, Ph.D., finds cultural practices, influenced by environment, history and structure have defined the rules of what is and is not edible
  • Chances are you've sampled your first insect part, albeit unintentionally; the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has established the maximum amounts of unavoidable defects in food including insect parts, such as 60 fragments in 100 grams of chocolate or two maggots in every 100 grams of tomato juice
  • Insects are a rich source of protein, fiber and antioxidants; while sustainable insect farming practices may not damage the environment, when agricultural practices work with nature and not against it the same happens for current food sources

The practice of eating squirming, flying, crunchy insects is called entomophagy. It may sound extreme, but it's been practiced for millennia. Some are harvested in the wild and others are farmed. A report from the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization identified 1,900 edible insects in April 2012 and reported that 2 billion people regularly eat them.

The global population is now 7.7 billion, which means the 2 billion eating insects represents 25% of the world. The practice of eating insects is common in many tropical countries where some species grow to large sizes and are easy to harvest year-round.


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