- John Peter, 23, from Coimbatore, India, lives on a daily diet of insects
- He eats cockroaches, caterpillars, lizards, dragonflies, spiders and ants
- Now he is hoping to consume a record number of earthworms in a minute
- ‘I want people to respect me like they do Bear Grylls,’ he says
12:50 EST, 18 November 2013
06:00 EST, 19 November 2013
He loves eating cockroaches and his favourite food is live Scorpion.
Now, India’s biggest Bear Grylls fan is hoping to eat a record number of earthworms in a minute.
John Peter, 23, lives on a daily diet of insects, including grasshoppers, cockroaches and dragonflies.
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‘People are disgusted’: John Peter lives on a daily diet of insects, including grasshoppers and earthworms
Daily diet: The 23-year-old also enjoys consuming caterpillars, lizards, spiders, frogs, snails and ants
Slimy snack: ‘I love people looking at me weirdly,’ said Mr Peter, who aspires to be like adventurer Bear Grylls
‘I want respect’: Mr Peter shows off his unusual food preferences, including spiders, left, and ants, right
He also enjoys consuming caterpillars, lizards, ticks, spiders, frogs, snails and ants.
‘I love people looking at me weirdly when I eat insects,’ said Mr Peter, who aspires to be like the TV adventurer.
‘I want people to respect me like they do Bear Grylls. People are disgusted when I eat stuff like earthworms and cockroaches but they’re amazed also. It’s a good feeling.’
Mr Peter, from Coimbatore, southern India, said he has been practising eating earthworms in record time in preparation for his Guinness World Record attempt.
JOHN PETER’S TYPICAL DAILY DIET
Indian breakfast of Dosa
Vegetable and cheese sandwich filled with earthworms, made by his mother
10 to 20 lizards
Indian meal of Dal and rice, with dragonflies or grasshoppers on the side
Cockroaches and ants
Plus one Scorpion a week as a treat
He first tried one of the slimy creatures at the age of 15 after seeing an episode of Bear Grylls’ Man Vs Wild.
‘To be honest I didn’t want to be boring or like other people,’ he said. ‘I wanted to be a bit different, so when I tried eating insects for the first time and found them to be quite tasty, it was the start of a new habit.’
Before long, Mr Peter had become recognised in his hometown as the ‘insect-eating man’.
‘People started to recognise me on the street – it was brilliant,’ said Mr Peter, who insists the texture of insects is crunchy and sweet.
‘I love the taste, even more so when I mix them with pickles and roti.
‘But dead insects are really horrible. They’re not nice at all, so I have to find live ones to eat to make it more enjoyable for me.’
Mr Peter, who sources the insects from his garden and his friend’s farm, said his favourite insect was live Scorpion.
‘It’s crunchy and the gooey insides are very sweet,’ he said.
‘Many insects like earthworms have a very muddy taste and it isn’t nice but the texture mixed with other tastes is lovely.
Bizarre: Mr Peter, a sales representative, has become recognised in his hometown as the ‘insect-eating man’
‘But grasshoppers and dragonflies aren’t fleshy, so they’re very spiky when I chew them.’
Mr Peter said his father Philip, 46, mother Dhanam, 43, and sister Mary, 24, were horrified when he first started eating insects.
He said they worried about the effects it would have on his health, as well as his prospects of marriage.
‘My parents were just worried about any future wife,’ he said. ‘They worried no woman would want to marry an insect eating man.
Unusual habit: Mr Peter, who has been practising eating earthworms in record time in preparation for his Guinness World Record attempt, said he prefers to eat live insects as dead ones are ‘really horrible’
‘But it will be fine, I’m confident I will marry. If anything girls love that I am well known for something.’
In 2011, Mr Peter’s skin broke out in a patchy rash and his family were convinced it was because of his passion for insects.
‘I saw a doctor about it and even though he confirmed it was a reaction to something I had eaten, he did some further tests and said I was fit and well,’ he said.
‘Everyone should try it’: Mr Peter is now trying to encourage his friends and family to try his diet of insects
Mr Peter is now trying to encourage his friends and family to try his diet of insects. He believes once they get over the initial shock, they’ll love the taste.
‘Everyone should try it; once they get over the fear they’ll love it,’ he said.
‘Maybe one day there will be a demand for earthworms and scorpions as there is for chicken and beef.
‘Hopefully I’ll be recognized by Guinness Book Of Records and then everyone will be intrigued and will wonder what a worm tastes like.’
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