New research into the human microbiome shows that what happens in the gut has a big impact on immunity, skin quality, energy levels, and even mood. So, what can we do to heal our gut and improve microbiome? There are several things and eating insects can help a lot!
What affects your microbiome?
We are starting to learn how important having a healthy gut and robust microbiome is. If we want to keep it that way, we need to feed and protect beneficial bacteria that help us battle invaders. These are the most important and easily to take steps.
- Get at least 25 g of fibre a day. Fermentable fibre found in vegetables, fruits, and insects is what helpful bacteria feed on. Sufficient daily supply is a must.
- Eat fermented foods several times a week. Fermented foods contain good bacteria. Foods like sauerkraut, yogurt, or kombucha should appear in your diet often.
- Avoid refined sugar. Excessive consumption of refined sugar and processed foods feeds yeast, fungi, and other hostile microbes which can disrupt the balance of your microbiome. It also causes inflammation that weakens the intestinal wall.
- Sleep well and manage chronic stress. Bad sleep and chronic stress both prevent proper regeneration and increase inflammation, neither of which is compatible with a healthy gut.
This is how insect eating will help
Insects contain several nutrients that will directly help improve the state of your gut. Let’s look at our favourite insect, the cricket, as an example.
Cricket flour contains 6 g of fibre per 100 g. This is about 24 % of the daily required 25 g. And the fibre in cricket flour is unique because it comes from the cricket’s hard shell in a form chitin and chitosan. Early research suggests that this form of fibre binds to dietary lipids, reducing cholesterol and triglycerides in the body, which is great for prevention of cardiovascular disease too.
Crickets contain 3,6 g of glycine per 100g (1). Glycine helps form two most important substances that make up the intestinal wall - gelatin, and glutamine. They are essential for repair and maintenance. It's estimated that we should get about 2 grams of glycine a day from food sources.
Crickets contain 2,8 g of omega-3 fatty acids per 100 g. It is recommended to get 1,6 g of these fatty acids per day which means only about 58 g of crickets covers your daily needs. Omega-3 fats help reduce inflammation which makes is important for gut health.
Make sure you get enough fibre and gut-friendly nutrients. Try our insect bars!
- 1) Dun Wang et al., ‘Evaluation on Nutritional Value of Field Crickets as a Poultry Feedstuff’, Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences 2005, https://www.cricketflours.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Value-of-Crickets.pdf