The 6 Most Horrifying Health Foods in the World

We don't want to come off as ignorant of other cultures. After all, if we eat the eggs of chickens, can we still get grossed out by jellied moose nose?

Yes. Yes we can. We can't help it. All of the following dishes are considered healthy in their native cultures, but we still could not be persuaded to sit down to a nice bowl full of ...

#6. Shirako, aka Fish Testicles With Semen

Alessandro D'Adda/Courtesy Travel + Leisure

Shirako ("white children") is fish balls, often served up raw in the form of sushi. Not fish balls as in delectable little balls of fish meat coated in tempura and fried up nice and crispy -- fish balls as in the genitalia of male fish, all swollen up with milt, which is a less crude synonym for fish cum.

Recipes describe the eating experience like so:

"Steamed, milt is as soft as an egg custard; pan- or deep-fried, the surface crisps up while the interior remains soft and creamy. The taste of milt is subtle; there's a slight sweetness and just the faintest hint of its oceanic roots."

Jupiterimages/ Images
It's a cumucopia of tastes that burst loads of flavor into your mouth.

But Apparently It's Good for You

Shirako often comes (ugh) from cod or herring, and the milt it contains has such a spectacular omega-3/omega-6 ratio that it's even been used to make dietary supplements. The company Nutratec, for example, used it to develop a supplement called Sementis. That's right: They didn't even bother to hide the fact that it was semen, they just put that shit right in the name. So why pop a boring old pill when you can instead (literally) pop shirako into your mouth-hole and savor the sensation of some fish's man juice ever so slowly flowing down your throat (while funk music plays in the background)? It's so healthy, it's practically pornographic.

After all, an ex post facto blowjob is the least you can do to repay that poor fish who sacrificed his nads for the sake of your cardiovascular health, don't you think?

Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images
The problem is that you may feel like smoking afterward, thus ruining everything.

#5. Tiet Canh, aka Duck Blood Soup

The Vietnamese dish tiet canh is a sort of soup made from a whole duck -- the meat, the gizzard, the kidneys, the liver ...everything. And if you felt a cold chill go up your back at the way we italicized "everything," that's because the rich, ruby-red broth in which all of said duck parts are floating happens to be freshly squeezed duck blood.
Gross ... pulp.

Tiet canh is a very popular street food, so it should be relatively easy to order yourself up a serving during your next tour of Vietnam -- the bad news being that slurping down raw duck juice could possibly come with a bonus helping of the H5N1 bird flu. There is good news, however: If you have a hankering for a nice heaping bowl of blood soup but you're afraid of catching Captain Trips, you can still try it ... because sometimes it's made from dog instead of duck. Woof.

But Apparently It's Good for You

A protein-rich diet is a surefire road to packing a Roman-god-like six-pack, if the Internet is to be believed. And nothing packs a veritable bucketload of protein quite like the recipe for tiet canh -- it's fish sauce (protein), duck meat (protein), and duck innards (fuck yeah, protein!), served up with a dash of peanuts (yet more protein!) and fresh herbs for flavor. Oh, and blood. Protein-packed blood.
You can't tell, but there's a buffed-out vampire d-bag flexing in that mirror.

#4. Yartsa Gunbu, aka Fungus Caterpillars

Yartsa gunbu is the Tibetan name for the sac fungus Ophiocordyceps sinensis, which loosely translates in English to OH DEAR GOD IT'S A FUCKING ALIEN MUMMY WORM.

Nicolas Merky/CC-BY-SA-3.0-DE
That's right, burn it with fire.

Yartsa gunbu is a caterpillar fungus that invades the larvae of the (as if this isn't already creepy enough) ghost moth common across Tibet. The relationship is all cool for a while, like that cousin who crashes on your couch but it's not a big deal since he doesn't eat that much. But then you realize that your couch-crashing cousin is some kind of obscene amalgamation of Ed Gein and the face-hugger from Alien.

The fungus mummifies the caterpillar from the inside out, then bursts through its little wormy face with a disgusting stalk of fungus. Then, humans will dig them up, wash off the dirt, and make soup out of them.
It's like if H.P. Lovecraft wrote cookbooks.

But Apparently It's Good for You

Oh, did we mention that people pay thousands of dollars for it?

The magic "herb" has proven so beneficial to the Tibetan economy that it's been known to kick off full-on civil wars among the villagers harvesting and marketing it. Just what's so special about it that makes it worth killing for? Well, for starters, it has the amazing ability to grant you the power to cleave the Red Sea in two with a wiggle of your staff, just like Moses. And by "your staff" we mean "your monumental boner."

Yep, yartsa gunbu is the superpowered Viagra of the Himalayas. If that fails to impress, it's also known to enhance stamina and improve liver function. Hell, a Chinese track coach once used it on his athletes as a type of natural steroid that wouldn't raise any red flags on a piss test. And it worked, too -- right up until people started wondering how said athletes managed to consecutively break five world records, despite competing with what we are assuming were plainly visible erections.

Scott Barbour/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images
He won by a hose.

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