Bugs: Creepy, Crawly, Nutritious

The mere thought of eating an insect is enough to gag many of us in the Western world—according to one report, 72% of Americans are unwilling to even consider the notion—but for about 2 million people worldwide, bugs are an important part of the diet. More than 1,900 types of insects are considered edible and the most popular ones include beetles, caterpillars, bees, wasps, ants, and grasshoppers.

Many insects are high in protein, healthy fats, and other nutrients in low in carbohydrates. Could entomophagy—the practice of eating insects—combat the problems of obesity and malnutrition? It's possible, especially as we face the effects of climate change on food production combined with a growing population.

If you want proof that insect consumption isn’t harmful, consider this: most of us are already eating bugs. According to the FDA, it's considered "acceptable" for 100 grams of chocolate to contain as many as 60 "insect fragments," and for 100 grams of peanut butter to contain up to 30 bug pieces.

Image Credit: Thinkstock

Sourced from: MNT, Grub's up! How eating insects could benefit health