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Don’t eat cicadas (but only if you have a seafood allergy)

The FDA has asked people to not eat cicadas if they have seafood allergies

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Brood X cicada nymphs in Washington.

Brood X cicada nymphs crawl up a tree in Washington on Tuesday, May 25, 2021.

Carolyn Kaster, Associated Press

The Food and Drug Administration said earlier this week that you shouldn’t eat cicadas if you have a seafood allergy. Otherwise, you’re ... fine to eat them?

  • “Yep! We have to say it! Don’t eat #cicadas if you’re allergic to seafood as these insects share a family relation to shrimp and lobsters,” the FDA tweeted.

Do people eat cicadas?

It may seem like a weird move to eat the cicadas since they’re, you know, bugs. But, as NBC News reports, people have released recipes for cicadas. The bugs have been described “as a rare gourmet treat,” according to NBC News.

Can you be allergic to cicadas?

The Food Agricultural Organization of the United Nations has said that food allergies connected to eating insects need to be explored more because there’s little research on it.

  • In fact, a report from the group said that “individuals already allergic to crustaceans are particularly vulnerable to developing allergic reactions to edible insects, due to allergen cross-reactivity.”

Brood X and cicadas

The advice from the FDA came as the current group of cicadas — which has the name of Brood X — has come up from the group for the first time in 17 years, as I wrote for the Deseret News.