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Natural Rainforest Remedy – Beetle Larvae

by Jason on July 17, 2012

Let me begin by saying there are some things I thought that I would never do, but when you are in certain situations, you are willing to try just about anything. And that’s what I experienced last night when I had been with an irritating cough that kept me up at nights for the past week here in Manu Park. I was hacking up a lung almost every minute for three days straight. I’d been coughing for seven days and had a sore throat the whole time. I just wanted my cough to go away.

So our native cook, who is such a lovely lady, went out and found a natural remedy for me. And I love natural remedies. The more natural, the better. I was excited to see what the natural remedy was — until I actually found out what the remedy was.

Squirming and inching their way across the table were four larvae of beetle. The larvae were an inch in diameter and a few inches long. I was told that first you drink the oil of the larvae once you squish it out of them. Then, you flatten out what’s remaining and fry up the larvae in the pan. The natives say the larvae taste like chicharron — which is fried pig. They say it’s great for the lungs and for the throat with a cough like I had.

I love natural remedies, but did the remedy have to be similar to an episode of Fear Factor? But I was so desperate to try anything to get rid of my cough. I find it amazing what I’ll do when I’m out in the jungle with no other options. I didn’t even know if the larvae would actually work, because I had been with this cough for seven days, and nothing was working.

In addition, she had me drink some hot herbal tea as well as take a few pills meant for coughing. She did have a bit of a cream that was similar to Vicks Vaporub. She said I needed to spend the night all wrapped up and warm. She said I needed to sweat out all the impurities within.

The oil wasn’t so bad. I could stomach the oil. The oil was like drinking olive oil or something similar. And I didn’t see her squish the oil out of the beetle larvae, so that felt great too.

Then I had to eat the fried flattened beetle larvae. I definitely liked it flattened as opposed to a full meaty larvae. First, I separated the head, or what looked like could be a head, from the body. Then I plopped the fried part into my mouth.

I wanted to swallow it whole, but everyone said to chew, chew, chew. They were very clear with their directions to chew. So I chewed. And I had to eat a second one too. All of my reactions are recorded on video, which I will post in a few weeks.

The larvae tasted like something fried and crispy. The larvae tasted just like chicharron – which is fried pig.

So I followed the remaining instructions, and I went to bed in my sleeping bag wrapped up tight. And soon, I started to sweat. And sweat. And sweat. I had never slept in so much sweat, wetness, or humidity. My sleeping bag was so much hotter inside than the outside air, which was also warm.

I was surprised because I had my best night of sleep yet here in the jungle. I slept like a rock. I slept deeply. And I actually had a lengthy dream where I was running away from some people who were trying to capture me. I woke up from my nightmare to realize I was actually sleeping alone in a remote part of the jungle worried about jaguars and poisonous snakes eating me, amongst other things. I wanted to go back to my dream.

Anyway, I woke up in the morning and my cough was gone. I felt whole again. I felt rested. And I could feel the sweat that had left. I felt like that night was my Garden of Gethsemane. I sweated from every pore as the impurities and sickness left my body. I was all alone out in one of the most remote areas of the world deep in the jungle with dangerous animals all around.

I woke up like a new man, having survived the olive press — or larvae press. Whatever you choose to call it. I am now a believer of the healing power of the oil pressed from the beetle larvae. I have been converted after experiencing my own night of darkness. I will now preach to the world of my own conversion experience to the beetle larvae. And I will invite others to drink of its fountain whenever they find themselves as deep in the jungle as I am with an aggressive cough that just won’t go away.

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Claire Westlake July 17, 2012 at 12:01 pm



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