Food

Cockroach Milk Is A Thing Now, Proving We Have Strayed Too Far From God's Light

Tribeca Productions/Next In Nature

These days, everyone is looking for ways to make their body as healthy as possible, but sometimes we take things a little too far.

For example, COCKROACH MILK.

You heard me. Scientists are predicting that cockroach milk, a type of entomilk (insect milk), could be added to our daily lives with an immense benefit.

How?

The obvious question here, is how do you milk a cockroach. Well, it's not exactly milking them the same way you would a cow, but the process is pretty extreme.

We'll start off by acknowledging that it's not all cockroaches, just the Pacific Beetle cockroach, which is mainly found in Hawaii. It differs from normal cockroaches in the sense that instead of laying eggs, it gives birth to live young.

Professor Barbara Stay discovered that the liquid from a mother cockroach crystallizes in the guts of its babies.NPR

This is why the PBC is so desirable, because the milk-like substance the female feeds her young from inside her brood sac. It's this liquid that people are hoping to harvest and turn into milk for humans.

Scientists would have to open up the cockroach's stomach and get into the brood sac to extract the liquid. This can only happen when the roach starts lactating, which is about 40 days into her lifespan.

Indian Times

It will take millions of cockroaches to get enough milk, but apparently it will be worth it.

Why?

Modern Notion

So if you're like me, you read the words "cockroach milk" and wondered why anyone would hate themselves enough to drink that. But apparently, there are some health benefits that we are overlooking.

A study in the Journal of the International Union of Crystallography, there are protein crystals in this cockroach liquid that are jam-packed with nutrients, like amino acids that can help your cells grow and reproduce.

Washington Post

It also apparently is packed with protein, and is highly glycosylated, meaning it is better than any other milk humans have consumed. Plus, it has a lot of good fats that the body needs but doesn't produce.

Gourmet Grubb, a food shop in Cape Town, has already been using insect milk to make ice cream.

“Eating insects as is or in powdered form is a tad boring...Therefore we use entomilk to make our delicious ice cream,” the website notes. Think of entomilk as a sustainable, nature-friendly, nutritious, lactose-free, delicious, guilt-free dairy alternative of the future.”

Next In Nature

The Canadian grocery chain Loblaws has already started carrying cricket powder at certain stores, and Jarrod Goldin, president of Entomo Farms says they're struggling to keep up with demand.

“Yes, there will be people who think [insects] are icky or have a yuck factor, but the ingredients are so versatile,” Goldin told Global News.

First off, you've ruined ice cream for me. Second, I just don't understand how the effort is worth it.

The Health Site

Goldin also wants to change people's minds, saying the stigma around insects needs to change.

“This idea that insects are for the poor and disenfranchised is really missing the point,” he said. “The truth is there are nutritional health benefits that would be good for everybody.”

The Science

Patti Jakubowski

Registered dietitian Andy De Santis says that it makes sense that people want the extra protein from insects, but that the research isn't all there.

“I appreciate that they are a potentially more economical and environmentally friendly alternative to conventional animal products and if such a context exists that these two considerations trump everything else, perhaps these products could come to further prominence,” he told Global News. “But I am unsure as to their micronutrient content and whether or not it is comparable to more conventional alternatives."

Andy De Santis

He points to cricket flour, which is one of the most common insect products in North America.

“I’ve read that some species of insects contain decent levels of nutrients but that it depends on seasonality and what the insects are fed,” he continued. “From what limited information I’ve seen on cricket flour, it may be a good source of B12 but really only a modest source of iron/calcium.”

Is It Safe?

The milk crystalsNathan Coussens/NPR

It's all well and good that people want to fill their bodies with the milk of cockroaches (okay, no it's not) but do we actually know if it's safe?

Not really. Biochemist Subramanian Ramaswamy has been looking into the cockroach crystals

"In principle, it should be fine," Ramaswamy says. "But today we have no evidence that it is actually safe for human consumption."

Online Reaction

Would you drink cockroach milk?

Meagan has an intense love for Netflix, napping, and carbs. If you have a comment about one of Meagan's articles feel free to contact Tristan@shared.com