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Is eating crickets safe for health?

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Eating crickets has become a habit in several regions in India. Although for some people this habit may be considered unusual, in fact the practice of eating insects has long been practiced in Asian and African countries. In fact, it is now starting to be accepted in many other countries.

Is eating crickets safe for health?

The benefits of crickets for health are obtained from various important nutrients in them. These insects in particular are considered a more environmentally friendly source of protein when compared to other animal protein sources.

Is eating crickets safe for health?

In general, eating crickets, as well as other types of insects , tends to be safe and does not cause health problems. In fact, besides being safe for consumption in large quantities, insects such as crickets can be a source of protein , vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats that are good for the body. The vitamins and minerals found in crickets include calcium, potassium, zinc, magnesium, copper, folate, biotin, pantothenic acid, and iron. Crickets also contain fiber which is very beneficial for the body. However, eating crickets may pose various health risks such as allergic reactions and contamination with pathogens that infect insects. Therefore, you should only consume crickets from trusted breeders and processed in the right way.

The Benefits of crickets for health

Currently, scientific research related to the benefits of crickets is still very limited. Even so, the consumption of crickets around the world has increased because this one insect is considered an alternative protein source of the future. Crickets also have several potential benefits that make them increasing popular as an alternative food ingredient. Here are some of the benefits of crickets that you can get:

1. Improve gut health

The results of research from the University of Wisconsin-Madison show the potential benefits of crickets to improve gut health. This is concluded from the results of studies that show an increase in metabolic enzymes that can improve gut health.

2. Reduce inflammation

Still in the same study, it was also found that blood protein levels of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha), had decreased. The TNF-alpha protein has been linked to inflammatory bowel conditions. Furthermore, higher levels of TNF-alpha are also commonly seen in depression and even cancer, so the decreased levels of this protein suggest that it has the potential to reduce inflammation in the body following consumption of crickets.

3. Increase the number of good bacteria

Crickets contain chitin fiber which is different from fruits and vegetables. One of the functions of fiber is as food for beneficial microbes and bacteria or also known as probiotics. The results showed that consuming crickets could increase the number of beneficial probiotic bacteria such as Bifidobacterium animals. It is a type of good bacteria that has been linked to improved digestive function and many other benefits. However, more research is still needed to support the results of these studies, as well as to ascertain exactly what components can contribute to improving gut health.

4. As a healthier source of protein

When compared to other animal protein sources, crickets are a healthier and more environmentally friendly protein option. Especially for people who are used to a diet high in meat. 

In fact, several types of crickets that can be eaten, are a complete source of protein. This species of cricket contains all nine essential amino acids in ideal proportions.

5. As a source of beneficial nutrients

Not only protein, crickets are also rich in various other nutrients that are beneficial for health. In fact, some types of nutrient content in crickets are higher than other animal sources of nutrition, including:

  • The iron content of crickets is 180% higher than beef .
  • The content of vitamin B2 or riboflavin and calcium is higher than chicken , beef or pork.
  • The fiber content is higher, whereas other animal sources only contain very limited amounts of fiber.

In addition, crickets are also rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids which are beneficial in maintaining heart health.

Those are the various benefits of crickets that can be obtained. Besides being consumed in whole form, crickets can also be consumed in powder or extract form. In general, consuming crickets does not cause side effects. But stop consuming crickets if you experience allergy symptoms after eating them.

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