Consideration of insects as a source of dietary protein for human consumption

Tyler A. Churchward-Venne, Philippe J. M. Pinckaers, Joop J. A. van Loon, Luc J. C. van Loon*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

51 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Consumption of sufficient dietary protein is fundamental to muscle mass maintenance and overall health. Conventional animal-based protein sources such as meat (ie, beef, pork, lamb), poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy are generally considered high-quality sources of dietary protein because they meet all of the indispensable amino-acid requirements for humans and are highly digestible. However, the production of sufficient amounts of conventional animal-based protein to meet future global food demands represents a challenge. Edible insects have recently been proposed as an alternative source of dietary protein that may be produced on a more viable and sustainable commercial scale and, as such, may contribute to ensuring global food security. This review evaluates the protein content, amino-acid composition, and digestibility of edible insects and considers their proposed quality and potential as an alternative protein source for human consumption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1035-1045
Number of pages11
JournalNutrition Reviews
Volume75
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017

Keywords

  • amino-acid content
  • dietary protein
  • edible insects
  • protein digestibility
  • HERMETIA-ILLUCENS
  • NUTRITIONAL-VALUE
  • TENEBRIO-MOLITOR
  • EDIBLE INSECTS
  • NUTRIENT DIGESTIBILITY
  • BROILER-CHICKENS
  • FOOD
  • QUALITY
  • FEED
  • SUPPLEMENT

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