The Brand New Superfood
Sometimes it can take a while to come around to new health trends, especially those labeled as “superfoods.” Many people today are still on the fence about kale, or even cold-pressed juices. However, a possible new trend that comes recommended by scientists makes a kale and wheatgrass smoothie sound like an ice cream sundae. Biochemist Subramanian Ramaswamy and his colleagues at the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine in Bangalore, India, recently stumbled upon a surprisingly healthy new food: cockroach milk. (We’ll give you a second if you need to go throw up now.)
Cockroaches Make Milk?!
The researchers say that cockroach milk isn’t exactly “milk.” They discovered the substance when studying the cockroach embryos. The milk is actually a protein crystal that grows in the middle of a certain cockroach’s stomach, specifically, the Diploptera punctate cockroach–the only roach known to give live birth to its young, as opposed to laying eggs. It gets its superfood status because the milk is reportedly four times more nutritious than cow’s milk–not to mention the fact that it’s a “complete food,” meaning that it contains proteins, fat, and sugar. It has all of the necessary amino acids to be a complete protein, too.
How is it Obtained?
Animal (and insect) rights activists can breathe easy: the scientists aren’t going to actually “milk” the cockroaches. Instead, they’re trying to synthesize a similar chemical food in a laboratory. That’s probably a good idea, because according to one of the team’s scientists, the flavor “doesn’t taste like anything special.”
How Will it be Used?
The scientists think that this crystal may be the key to feeding the world’s ever-growing population, whether in pill-form, or as an additive to other foods or water. The scientists aren’t recommending the cockroach milk for Westerners, whose diets are already rich enough in calories.
The Future of Cockroach Milk
While it may be a potentially new solution to supplement the diets of multitudes of people in the future, health-conscious trend-seekers may prefer to stick with the other so-called superfoods for now–or, at least until someone creates a version of cockroach milk that tastes like bacon!