Remember that song we all sang back in grade school? Something along the lines of “Nobody likes me, everybody hates me, guess I’ll go eat worms?” Pretty uplifting song, don’t you think?
I never really understood the point of torturing yourself further by eating worms when you were already having a seemingly horrible day, but I digress. That cheery little tune played over and over in my head as my children and I munched on the newly released Exo bars; a nutrition bar that contains the usual ingredients of dates, nuts, sweetener and the more unusual addition of crickets. That’s not a typo. Crickets. As in, “chirp chirp”. Moving on the the next blog post yet? Not so fast! If you can get past the yuck factor, you will find that crickets (and other insects and creepy crawlies) are actually very nutritious. What's more? My kids loved them. They giggled at the thought of eating bugs and were as surprised as I was at the flavor of the bars. Not a leg or wing to be seen (or felt).
If you are still reading, here is your crash course in cricket nutrition.
Per 100g, crickets contain 121 calories, 13g of protein, 5.5g of fat and only 5g of carbohydrates. Not a bad nutritional profile for a little bug. Like us, crickets are omnivores meaning they eat both plants and animals. They also provide 8 essential amino acids, vitamin B12, Vitamin A (the biologically active form), calcium, phosphorus, and minerals as well. Unlike other animals, they don’t take much room to farm and are useful in that they can eat things inedible to humans and other animals and turn it into very edible insect mass. They really are an amazing little creature!
Of course most of us know that insects have been eaten throughout the world for thousands of years in many forms. I’m sure you’ve heard of deep fried crickets or chocolate covered crickets, but since I'm focusing on the nutritional aspect of crickets, let's leave those delicacies for later and focus on forms that will add to your health. In addition to a variety of companies that offer bars, crickets also come as a powdered flour. I did buy some and tried to put together an edible chocolate chip cookie, but my results were less than stellar. That adventure will have to be continued another day.
So, what do you think? Are you intrigued? Give Exo Protein Bars a try. At the most, you'll discover a new and delicious form of protein. At the least, you might gain bragging rights with your friends.