Believe it or not, milk from the Pacific Beetle cockroach is the latest thing about to rock the health-conscious world, as it is full of nutrients.
This milk is produced by cockroach species known as Diploptera punctata, native to Australia, China, Hawaii, Fiji, and India. The findings of a research team based at the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine in India were published in the Journal of the International Union of Crystallography.
Namely, a 40-day-old female secretes crystalloid protein molecules in a pale yellow liquid, which is used to nourish its offspring. It is secreted in the cockroach’s brood sac (uterus) and imbibed by the embryo, which quickly develops pharyngeal muscles.
This milk is rich in calories and fats and contains a lot of essential lips, and all nine essential amino acids required for human cell growth.
According to researcher Sanchari Banerjee, these crystals are a complete food, being full of fats, proteins, and sugars. The analysis showed that it contains 45% protein, 5% free amino acids, 22% lipids, and 25% carbs. The milk has been discovered to contain more than three times the energy of an equivalent mass of dairy milk.
In fact, this researcher was published in 2016, but it has recently become popular due to a cultural shift towards more environmentally friendly non-dairy alternatives.
At the time of their study’s publication, the authors reported that there still was no evidence that cockroach milk was safe for people to eat, and pointed out that cockroaches only make a tiny amount of this fluid, so producing enough to sell it commercially could pose a serious challenge.
However, when it comes to skin health, Dr. Rachel Nazarian, skin care specialist at Schweiger Dermatology Group, advises against testing out cockroach milk, since the levels of growth hormones are unknown, and may exacerbate acne in certain people. Additionally, high sugar levels can accelerate skin aging. Yet, it still offers numerous other benefits and is especially beneficial for the health of the hair and nails.
Nevertheless, to produce 100 grams (10cl) of roach milk, they have to put down about a thousand cockroaches, which is the main reason why this milk hasn’t hit the market yet.
Moreover, it is not easy to extract the milk, and scientists use a scalpel to cut out the cockroach’s midgut, which contains the brood sac with the milk.
Yet, researchers are now investigating other potential methods that would extract the milk in an easier way in order to make it commercially available, and one possible variant is by converting the protein crystalloids into pills or tablets.
Many of you might find it highly disgusting, but the idea of cockroach milk is appealing to many scientists, and even to some consumers.
There is a growing demand for dairy-free alternatives to cow’s milk, especially by people with dairy allergies or intolerances, those who follow a vegan lifestyle, and for anyone wishing to switch to more sustainable, environmentally friendly food sources.