Worms can be cultivated or discovered in the wild and utilized to enrich the soil in gardens and flowerbeds.
Through vermicomposting efforts, some experts have found that it is easy to cultivate a seemingly infinite supply of worms.
You may have wondered whether or not worms could serve as a nutritional supply for people, given the availability of such vast populations and the simplicity with which considerable quantities can be raised.
Keep reading to find out if they are the right choice to include in your diet or if they make you fat.
They Are An Excellent Source Of Protein
The high protein content of worms is one of the strongest arguments for their use as a food source for humans.
According to this study, earthworms contain up to 71% protein by dry weight. In addition, the fat level is lower than that of some other commonly consumed protein-rich foods.
Some renowned experts compared the protein and fat content of earthworms to that of a variety of different food sources.
A study done and published in the 1997 edition of a nutritional journal hypothesized that earthworms could serve as a feasible source of protein for humans.
Therefore, from a protein standpoint, worms hold up fairly well.
Are They Edible?
Numerous worms are edible and contain a significant amount of protein in addition to calcium, iron, and necessary amino acids.
Despite the need for adequate preparation and safety procedures, numerous worm species are consumed in various cultures around the world.
It was discovered that, although the concept of eating worms may appear repulsive in Western society, worms have a rich and extensive history as a food source in other parts of the world.
Where Are They Commonly Consumed?
The concept of eating worms is not at all new.
According to a journal, earthworms have been consumed in China for generations. In addition, they identify analogous patterns in Taiwan, sections of Venezuela, Western Europe, and portions of South America and Africa.
And in many other regions of the globe, earthworms have been consumed by humans for centuries. In fact, there are internet retailers, that sell dried earthworms for food, such as their Earthworm Jerky.
Earthworms Also Provide Other Nutrients
Protein alone does not constitute a meal. What about additional essential nutrients? In addition to necessary amino acids, iron, calcium, and more, it turns out that earthworms supply a wide variety of additional nutritious components.
They also include abundant and trace minerals, though the levels vary depending on the soil from which the worms were taken.
According to studies, wild earthworms typically have higher nutritional content than commercially supplied worms. This is presumably related to the soil’s quality.
And it extends far beyond worms. In fact, there are over 2,000 recognized edible insects.
Should worms be cooked before consumption?
Prior to consuming any animal or bug, it is essential to prepare it. Earthworms are capable of transporting bacterial infections from the soil. These microorganisms pose a danger of infection if not completely cooked.
This is true for most sources of raw beef. Beef, eggs, and fish are all potentially hazardous if not properly cooked. Thus it is with worms.
According to a renowned survivalist, earthworms can be purified by soaking in water and then eaten raw in a survival emergency.
Some Common Types
Most common types of worms are given below:
They are segmentless, squishy invertebrates. They lack specialized respiratory systems, thus they are constrained to this flat form in order to breathe via their skin. Flatworms have a single body cavity via which they consume food and expel waste.
These worms belong to the family Onuphidae, which live deep inside the sand of surf beaches, and are widely used as bait in various regions of Australia. They are scavengers of beach carrion, such as dead fish and seabirds, and rely on their keen sense of smell to locate them.
Taking advantage of the beach worms’ extremely sensitive “nose,” fishermen pull a stinky piece of fish or meat gently through the beach’s wash zone to attract and even entice beach worms to the surface of the sand.
To retrieve the entire worm without shattering the fragile body requires considerable skill and practice, and many novices have been left with only the worm’s head. Fortunately, the remaining portion of the worm may typically regrow its head.
Numerous segmented worms possess parapodia, which are protrusions that resemble legs and aid in locomotion. Earthworms are the most widely recognized segmented worms.
In contrast, roundworms are very smooth and tubular, with openings at both ends of their bodies, allowing them to consume from one end and expel waste from the other.
Despite the stigma associated with eating worms in western society, several kinds of worms are consumed as part of a normal diet in numerous nations. So, based on the information given above, it is clear that worms will not make you gain weight.
In terms of supplying a sustainable source of protein and key vitamins and minerals, worms hold their own from a nutritional standpoint.
Whether you are looking to broaden your culinary horizons or simply hone your survival abilities, properly cleaned and cooked worms are a viable option, as supported by scientific evidence of their nutritional content.