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These creatures generate an abundance of noise—but are a hearty amount of protein. We’re obviously talking about crickets. Yup, you heard it right! The creepy, crawly, winged critters are the next big thing in the nutrition world. Insects like crickets and grasshoppers are nutritional powerhouses—high in protein, good fats and the essential amino acids lysine and tryptophan, according to a 2013 report from the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization. The report also mentions that these insects can be farmed on smaller amounts of land and emit less greenhouse gases than traditional livestock.
Until recently, bug eating in America was only thought of as a dare or a challenge seen on “Survivor.” But once word got out that crickets provided a healthful source of protein, iron and other good-for-you nutrients, many started to shift their mindset. In fact, many entrepreneurs are investing into farms to produce cricket flour. In fact, Fast Company predicts that edible insects are already a $20 million industry in the U.S.
No wonder athletes like NBA Superstar Carmelo Anthony and three-time female Tough Mudder champion Amelia Boone have joined the EXO protein bars team as investors. Cricket flour offers 65 percent protein–which is more than beef or chicken. About 100 grams of crickets also have about double the protein of one egg.
Other benefits include:
- Less carbohydrates
- Less processed than other protein powder sources
- Full of essential amino acids, B12, calcium, iron and zinc
For comparison, just check out the numbers compared to other sources:
Look for specialty products from Cricketflour.com to use at home; it’s important to know that some insects may be infected with pesticides, chemicals or various diseases that could be poisonous to humans.
Related: Make Your Own Protein Bars