Protein is essential to keep our bodies functioning properly. There have been concerns about farming livestock recently so there has been a growing interest in other sources of protein. Retailers as well as consumers have been taking a serious look at insects as this alternative source. Yes, that’s right – insects!
While it may not sound like the most appetizing alternative, many believe that insects are the simplest answer to getting more protein into our diets without having a harsh impact on the environment. They are packed full of protein as well as other vitamins and minerals like vitamin B12 and omega 3’s. They are also sustainable to farm. The more popular insects actually have a nutty taste that many find appealing. Shockingly, in many places, insects are already considered a delicacy. In a recent study, 2 billion people are already consuming this source of protein regularly.
Many companies have hopped on board this trend, creating new ways to add to this protein to our diets in innovative ways. There are protein bars and snack foods that use insects as their main ingredient. There are water-soluble options that would incorporate insect protein into protein shakes as well as alternative meat products. Another recent report showed that the edible bug industry could be worth as much as $8 billion by 2030!
Many may be concerned as to whether or not eating bugs is actually safe. There have been more and more standards being put into place to make sure that this is possible. New guidelines ensure that these bugs are bred and processed under hygienic standards before being allowed on the mainstream market. There is even evidence that bugs may have health benefits. Improved gut health, healthier brain development, and reduced inflammation are some of those benefits.
They are believed to be a healthier alternative to meat products like chicken and beef. With all this new research, we are starting to see that bugs may indeed, be the new superfood!