In this short article, we will provide an answer to the question, “Can you eat crocodiles?” with an in-depth analysis of crocodiles, nutritional contents and the health benefits of eating crocodiles, how to properly cook crocodiles and how to store crocodile meat.
Can you eat crocodiles?
Yes, you can definitely eat crocodiles. In fact, crocodiles are considered healthy for human consumption. The meat of crocodiles is rich in protein and low in fat. It has a somewhat mild flavour.
What is a crocodile?
Crocodiles are reptiles that reside in the tropical regions of Asia, Africa, Australia and America. They are classified in the same order Crocodilia, which includes alligators, gharials and caimans.
Until now, 13 species of crocodiles are known, so they have many diverse sizes. The dwarf crocodile is the smallest crocodile that is about 5.6 feet (1.7 meters) in length and 13 to 15 pounds (6 to 7 kilograms) in weight whereas the saltwater crocodile is the largest crocodile with a height of 20.24 feet (6.17 m). They can be up to 2,000 pounds (907 kg) in weight.
Nutritional contents of crocodiles
Crocodile meat is rich in protein and has a low-fat content as compared to other types of meat. It contains some amount of potassium, calcium, sodium, magnesium, iron, and manganese.
100 grams of crocodile provides 436 KJ of energy, 21.9 g of proteins and 1.9 grams of fat, unlike chicken and beef that have a high-fat content in comparison to crocodile meat.
Health benefits of eating crocodiles?
Crocodiles meat provides very positive health benefits.
Reduced risk of diabetes and obesity: Crocodile meat has a high amount of protein and iron. In addition, it has low carbohydrate and saturated fat content, and have fewer calories as compared to other meats thus eating more crocodile meat than other meats can decrease the risk of obesity and diabetes.
Low Cholesterol: Crocodile has very fewer amounts of cholesterol than other meats. A 300-gram serving contains only 23 milligrams of cholesterol, which is way less than our daily recommended dose of 300 mg.
Build muscle mass: The high protein content in the crocodile meat helps to gain muscle mass. It is especially beneficial for people who are into bodybuilding.
Omega-3 fatty acids: Crocodile meat has a good amount of omega 3 fatty acids, unlike many other types of meat. Omega-3 fatty acids help to regulate cholesterol levels in our body by decreasing the enzyme activity that causes the liver to break down fat.
Omega-3 fatty acids have also been found to be:
- anti-arrhythmic (preventing cardiac arrhythmia),
- anti-thrombotic (prevents the formation of a blood clot within a blood vessel),
- anti-atherosclerotic (prevents deposits of fats and fibrosis of the inner layer of the arteries), and
- anti-inflammatory (preventing inflammation) making consumption of crocodile meat a very healthy choice.
Anti-Carcinogenic and arthritic: Crocodile meat is considered to have anti-arthritic and anti-carcinogenic qualities. It helps to reduce the symptoms of inflammatory diseases such as arthritis and asthma.
Brain Health: Omega-3 fatty acids that are present in crocodile meat, also have a great impact on our brain health. EPA and DHA fatty acids maintain high levels of dopamine in the brain. They increase neuronal growth in the frontal cortex of the brain and increase cerebral circulation.
Health risks associated with crocodiles
Consumption of crocodile meat has certain health risks associated with it. Crocodile meat may be composed of harmful bacteria such as Salmonella which can cause severe health problems such as diarrhoea, typhoid, and digestive problems. Salmonella infection can also cause damage to the liver cells.
It has also been reported that crocodile meat may contain some amounts of mercury. If consumed in high amounts, it can lead to mercury poisoning and can be dangerous for pregnant women.
Do alligators and crocodiles have the same taste?
Yes, alligator and crocodile meat has a similar taste which is often linked with chicken. However, crocodiles live in seawater, so they take on a slight fishy undertone, while alligator meat has a swampy taste.
How to store crocodile meat?
Crocodile meat is easily available in supermarkets. Follow these tips below on how to store and process crocodile meat.
- The crocodile tail is considered the best part to consume. However, you can also buy ribs, nuggets and sausages that are made from the front legs of crocodiles.
- Keep the crocodile meat frozen until you need to cook it.
- Thaw the frozen meat in the refrigerator first. Avoid thawing the meat in hot water.
- Always wash your hands and utensils thoroughly before preparing the meat to avoid bacterial contamination.
- You can cook crocodile meat in almost all types of dishes. You can also bake, fry or stir it with other ingredients.
In this short article, we will provide an answer to the question, “Can you eat crocodiles?” with an in-depth analysis of crocodiles, nutritional contents and the health benefits of eating crocodiles, and how to store crocodile meat.