Health issues related to MSG
- Neurological diseases
- Heart Palpitations
- High blood pressure
- Numbness and tingling
What is MSG?MSG is also known by its proper name Monosodium Glutamate and is a naturally occurring amino acid found in seaweed. MSG originated in Japan and is a manufactured man-made tasteless powder that consists of 78% glutamic acid, 21% sodium and 1% contaminants.
Why is it added to food?It was first manufactured in the U.S. as ‘Accent’, sold to replace salt and enhance the flavor of food. MSG brings out the fifth taste bud called ‘Umami’ that makes food taste savory. MSG was used to make poor quality food taste better. When you consume food with MSG your taste buds think that the food you are eating is incredible while your brain makes excessive amounts of the feel good neuro-hormone dopamine. In essence MSG makes you want to eat more potentially low quality food, which increases your weight and restaurant profits.
Why is MSG bad for you?MSG has been labeled as an excitotoxin. These types of toxins excite your brain to produce excessive amounts of dopamine. Glutamic acid (part of MSG) is a neurotransmitter used by the brain, pancreas, eyes and nervous system to elicit certain responses from the body. When your body is exposed to too much Glutamic your cells become overly excited causing cellular damage, especially in the brain. Exposure to MSG can trigger neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. Your heart has Glutamic acid receptors that help keep it functioning properly. If your body has too much MSG it can cause heart palpitations and even death. MSG is also addictive.
How do I know if MSG is in the food I’m eating?The best way to avoid MSG is to eat only natural unprocessed foods. While this is optimal, it is not always possible, so make sure to read the labels on all processed foods, condiments and spices. Food labels that say ‘no MSG’ could still contain glutamic acid, which is the active ingredient in MSG.
Common foods that contain MSG
- Pot Noodles (in the sauces)
- Soy protein
- Textured vegetable protein
- Hydrolyzed protein (vegetable & plant)
- Yeast extract, autolyzed/hydrolyzed yeast
- Soy sauce
- Bouillon (all types)
- Malt extract/flavoring & barley malt
- Natural chicken/beef/pork flavorings
- Sodium/calcium caseinate
- Spices and seasonings