Unfortunately, it isn't just a gimmicky name for a new beverage, cockroach milk (yes milk from cockroaches) is real and scientists said the insect's secretions would soon be sprouting on menus everywhere. Hold onto your gag reflexes!
Credit: The Gold Water
The so-called cockroach milk is produced by a specific type of roach called the Pacific beetle (Diploptera Punctata) in the form of crystals to nourish its hatchlings. Before you gag, researchers from India’s Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine revealed that the post-natal fluid could be enjoyed by humans too, and in fact, it boasts many nutritional benefits.
Credit: The Indian Times
"The crystals are like a complete food – they have proteins, fats and sugars. If you look into the protein sequences, they have all the essential amino acids," said study author Sanchari Banerjee in an interview with The India Times. Apart from these, the cockroach milk has 3 times more calories than buffalo milk, which contains 236 calories and 9.2 grams of protein per cup.
Despite its benefits, it may not be a sustainable dairy alternative, as it's time intensive. As Buzzfeed reported, one would have to slice open pregnant roaches, separate an embryo, and collect the liquid with a pipette. Moreover, it takes 1,000 roaches to yield 100 grams of milk. If you do the math, it would probably require 38, 000 dead roaches to get a gallon of the milk.
Therefore, it might appear to be quite some time before health food fanatics get to pour cockroach milk into their overnight oats mason jar. Well until then, we are curious to find out how many are actually courageous enough to put the milk in their mouth.