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Health Benefits Of Eating Koh Phangan Insects

20 Nov 2019

Believe it or not, insects are good for your health!  Luckily for you, you can eat bugs every day if you’re up to it...just go to the Koh Phangan food market and you’ll find a full selection. 

Although in the western culture it seems gross to eat bugs, the truth is that around 2 billion people across the globe include insects in their diet.  The most commonly consumed are beetles, followed by caterpillars, bees, wasps, ants, grasshoppers, locusts, and crickets. All together, over 1,900 insect species are considered edible.

 

If your not sold on the idea of how normal it could be to include insects in your diet, maybe learning about the possible health benefits of bug consumption just might change your mind.  

 

The benefits of eating bugs:

 

They are high in protein.

A cricket, for example, is 65% protein.  Most of them pack more protein, pound for pound, than most traditional meat and plant sources.

 

They are high in many other nutrients.

Insect protein contains a wide range of amino acids.  Insects also contain unsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids, as well as enough fiber, vitamins, and minerals to rival the nutritional value of some grains, fruits, and vegetables.

Eating them is good for the environment.

Insects don't need much space, can live under all sorts of conditions, and are easy to feed.  Meaning, the practice of insect farming is much more sustainable as they require much fewer resources to grow.  Plus, they grow very quickly!  

 

There are countless ways to eat them.

Insects can be eaten whole, pan-fried, boiled, sautéed, roasted, grilled, or baked with a bit of oil, spices, and salt. Or they can be turned into flour and used for bars, breads, crackers, and cookies.  The powdered version of them can also be added to smoothies or soups. The possibilities are endless!  

In the food market however they only come in one way, fried with spices and salt.  They are delicious!

In the end, you’re eating bugs already whether you know it or not.  The Defect Levels Handbook from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) organization states that it is acceptable for 100 grams of chocolate to contain up to 60 "insect fragments" within six 100-gram samples, while peanut butter can contain up to 30 insect fragments per 100 grams.  So you minaswell give those bugs at the market a try!

 

for Phanganist readers.