Can Bugs End World Hunger? American Student Goes On 30-Day Insect Diet to Show Viability

Written by on April 16, 2017 in Food, Drink & Nutrition, Health with 1 Comment
Sauteed Roaches with Mushrooms & Onions

Sauteed Roaches with Mushrooms & Onions

On the whole, we americans aren’t very open about eating bugs. In fact, we’re so against it that should one be found in our salad, we’re pretty likely to push our plate away and call it a day.

But in other parts of the world, bugs are considered a normal part of the diet, or in some cases, even a delicacy. Mexicans eat chapulines and grasshoppers, the people of Thailand love snacking on scorpions, Ghanians like to chow down on fried or roasted termites, and it’s quite common to find a Zimbabwean eating a bowl of mopane worms.

Gene DeFoliart, a professor emeritus of entomology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison told National Geographic, “Eating insects certainly is an old tradition.”  Roman aristicrats supposedly loved beetle larvae reared on flour and wine, and the great Greek philosopher Aristotle wrote, “The larva of the cicada on attaining full size in the ground becomes a nymph; then it tastes best, before the husk is broken. At first the males are better to eat, but after copulation the females, which are then full of white eggs.”

Cricket Pizza -- A Meal He Got His Co-Workers To Try

Cricket Pizza — A Meal He Got His Co-Workers To Try

Still, knowing those things doesn’t change the fact, that bugs are a real culinary n0-no for your average American. Why then, did American student Cam Brantley-Rios go on a publicly-shared diet of insects for 30-Days straight? There are several reasons, but the loftiest of all is this: Brantley-Rios believes that eating bugs can save the world. According to him, they’re a “creepy crawly superfood” that is produced in an eco-friendly way that has very minimal impact on the environment.

He’s not alone in his perceptive either. If you google  “entomophagy” (the practice of eating bugs) with “ecology,” you’ll find many bloggers and scholars promoting the ingestion of insects as an environmentally sound solution to our world hunger problem. It really does make sense on a lot of levels. Check out Brantley-Rios blog for a detailed explanation of the personal and global benefits of eating bugs.

Breakfast: Mealworm Oatmeal and Cricket Smoothie

Breakfast: Mealworm Oatmeal and Cricket Smoothie

With all sorts of dietary and eco-production benefits, why doesn’t more of the world engage in entomophagy? One simple reason, something Brantley-Rios calls the “ick factor.”

To help the world (and himself) get over that culturally-induced psychological barrier,  Brantley-Rios created a blog and set out on a 30-Day diet of worms, grasshoppers, scorpions and more.

Here’s what he said about his 30-Day commitment before he began:

Cam Couldn't Get His Roommate Frank to Taste His Insect Meals

Cam Couldn’t Get His Roommate Frank to Taste His Insect Meals

This is a challenge unlike anything I’ve ever done before. I’ve been telling my friends and family about eating bugs since last summer. It’s time to put my money where my mouth is. I don’t necessarily have to make a blog to eat bugs nor do I have to eat them for 30 days, but this challenge isn’t just for me. This is an experiment. I want to see how feasible it is for anyone to include insects in a normal diet. 

Can they really be used on a daily basis? Do they actually taste good? What’s the best way to cook them? Is the cultural barrier even easy to overcome? I’m going to find out and I want to share my experience with you. If insects are really as deliciously nutritious as entomophagists claim they are, this should be no problem. In theory.

Brantley-Rios did complete his 30-Day challenge, and not only did he survive, he thrived. Along the way, he educated a lot of people via his blog and appearances on radio shows, and he even managed to get some co-workers and friends to taste some of his concoctions like mealworm pizza and silkworm surprise.

If you’re interested in learning more about entomophagy, seeing photos of the “30 Days of Bugs” experiment, or just getting some great ideas for tasty bug dishes, check out Brantley-Rios’s blog here.

Vicki Howie, Chakra ExpertVicki Howie is the Creator of Chakra Boosters Healing Tattoos™ (find out what inspired her to create them here). She’s also the Creator of Chakra Love, the Chakra Life Cycle System® and she’s the Co-Editor of Conscious Life News. You can visit her website,facebook page and youtube channel for lots of free chakra info and gifts. If you enjoy her innovative chakra work, you can order her new book “The Key to the Chakras” here on Love and blessings!


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