5 health benefits of grasshoppers

Grasshoppers were widely consumed in pre-Hispanic cultures

5 health benefits of grasshoppers
Chapulines are sold everywhere in Oaxaca – Photo: File photo/EL UNIVERSAL
English 28/08/2019 19:40 Mexico City ElBotiquín.mx Actualizada 19:47
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Grasshoppers, or chapulines as they are called in Mexico, are insects that belong to the Orthoptera group, as well as crickets and locusts. Usually, these animals are a nightmare for farmers, for they are famous for being hard-to-fight plagues.

However, despite this disadvantage, their benefits could be more since they have a high nutrients content. They used to be highly appraised in pre-Hispanic culture and diet, but that was lost in time.

Here, we will tell you why their consumption should come back into fashion. These are some of their health benefits.

1. They have a high content of good quality proteins

Their supply of protein is higher than meat and, contrary to it, its harmful fats content is almost non-existent. Chapulines have between 70% and 77% of protein while meat has between 50% and 57%, according to an article of the Autonomous University of the State of Mexico (UAEM).

Nevertheless, although it could be a good option to substitute the consumption of meat, a great amount of grasshoppers is needed to supply the same protein meat supplies with a few grams.

2. They have an antibacterial effect

According to a release of the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN), chapulines have an important content of a polysaccharide called chitin, which has antibacterial properties, in accordance with a study published by the Rafael Urdaneta University in Venezuela.

3. It maintains a healthy nervous system

The same release of the IPN points out that grasshoppers supply Vitamin B1 and B12 to the diet, which helps maintain healthy digestive and nervous systems, accordingly.

4. They are easy to digest

Another of the advantages of consuming chapulines, and insects in general, is that they are easy to digest. “For instance, a grasshopper was 62.96% of total protein, of which 89.63% is digestible,” mentions a release on the properties of insects of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).

5. They supply energy

Grasshoppers supply more energy even than cereals like wheat. With a little amount, you can obtain the vitality to perform your daily activities. It can be an excellent option for a mid-afternoon snack, according to the same UNAM release.


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