About MSG

So I’ve decided to start blogging about our food style….. In other words, our lifestyle when it comes to food. I’ve put this off because there is so much to tell and I’m not sure where to start. But if I wait for that perfect idea on how to start on that perfect day when there’s all the time in the world, it won’t happen.  Before I start here, let me say that I am NOT a scientist nor am I a doctor.  I don't profess to be.  But I am a self-educated mother who sought to better the health of herself, her husband and her  children and succeeded. What I share here is what I learned through many hours of research and the use of many scientifically backed resources.  You can learn from it and use the information to benefit you or you can choose to ignore it.  Totally up to you.

Eventually, I will blog a bit about our personal story….who we are and how we got here and what dramatic changes we have seen in our health. For now though, I figure I would start with by biggest pet peeve….. MSG!
Monosodium glutamate, also known as sodium glutamate or MSG is a salt of the amino acid - Glutamic Acid (glutamate). A salt is the chemical name for a molecule held together by opposite charges. Basically one (mono) sodium atom is "stuck" to the amino acid glutamate..

It is a neurotoxin. A neurotoxin is a substance that inhibits the proper function of neurons. Sometimes they damage neurons so that they can not function at all.  Other times the toxin attacks the signaling capability  of neurons an sometimes tells the neurons to send false signals. Neurotoxins are also capable of destroying the neurons completely.

{The following is taken from http://msgtruth.org/whatisit.htm} “According to some MSG opponents the glutamate added to foods is "bad" and the natural glutamate in our bodies is "good". MSG sellers argue that MSG is exactly like the glutamate in the human body, therefore it must always be "good". It is not so simple. There are contaminants in processed MSG. An anology that can be used is that there are right-handed amino acids and left handed ones. They are like mirror images of each other. Processed MSG contains not only the kind of amino acids the body is used to handling, but mirror image ones too. This may cause problems because it is like putting the wrong glove on your hand. It's not quite the same. We don't exactly know what problems this may cause. On the other hand (so to speak) the fact that glutamate the body is used to handling is also in MSG may present a problem because an excess of naturally occurring glutamate is well known by neuroscientists to be a problem in many disease states. Natural glutamate can cause problems we already know about. The reason food processors "free" glutamate from its bound form, is that it acts as a neurotransmitter in its free form. The food industry's claim that free glutamate is as harmless as bound glutamate is disingenuous at best. If it was exactly the same, they wouldn't need to hydrolyze vegetable protein (split the amino acids apart). “

MSG causes A LOT of problems. Most people are familiar with the old term “Chinese Restaurant Syndrome” in which people associated headaches, etc. that they would get with the Chinese food they had just eaten. Unfortunately, this does a great diservice to Chinese restaurants (some….just some though…do not use MSG…though those restaurants are hard to come by) and to assuming that the MSG is only used there….it should probably be termed “American Restaurant Syndrome” since many many many restaurants use MSG or it’s equivalent neurotoxins to enhance flavoring of the food they serve, most especially fast food chains or "Processed Pre-Mixed Food in a Box/Can Syndrome". The truth is though, that MSG and other neurotoxins found in many pre-mixed, processed food products  cause many problems. Some of these problems people have and think it’s just normal to have these conditions and think nothing of it : headaches, bloating, dizziness, rapid heartbeat, frequent urination, flushed skin, swelling, and many others. Those are the ‘mild’ affects. More serious affects include(but is certainly NOT limited to): Migraines, Depression, Mood Swings, Rage Reactions, Panic Attacks, Attention Deficit Disorders, Chest Pain, Extreme Rise or Drop in Blood Pressure, Insomnia and Asthma.

I’ve had very personal experience with some of the more serious affects. MSG is not something to mess with. And yet millions of people ingest this toxin within food they eat at restaurants and food they make at home each and every day, sometimes many many times a day.

It’s in EVERYTHING you wouldn’t think it would be. The biggest issue is that it comes in many disguises.                                   

Even food labels that CLAIM to be MSG free contain the hidden ingredients that are equivalent to MSG. These ingredients include (but are not limited to) : yeast extract, artificial flavors, spices(no, not the individual spices in your cupboard….just the ones on the food label that says ’spices’ without telling you what they actually are, hydrolyzed protein, hydrolyzed anything, Ajinomoto, and so many more! Find more information on how MSG is hidden in your processed foods at this site: http://truthinlabeling.com

I carry a list of ingredients with me at all times that we avoid. Most of this list contains the hidden names for MSG (yeast extract, autolyzed yeast extract, artificial flavors, glutamate, etc.) My family never knowingly consumes these foods. On the rare instances that we ingest something containing one of these ingredients now, we actually suffer an allergic type reaction! Everything from itching, hive-like swelling, mood reactions to vomiting, etc. Our bodies have now learned to fully acknowledge the toxin right away(within a couple hours though sometimes a reaction may not occur for 48 hours or more). Before, our bodies were so conditioned to these toxins that a reaction was not always so noticeable or we did not know enough to make the connection.

This is my first post about this. So as this is already long, I’ll stop here for now. I’m sure I’ll write more later. There are many things about foods and food products my family has learned along its journey to real health - and I will share lots of it in more posts to come! Until then, check out those sites I listed. You will then be on the road to educate yourself! J

Published on Categories Miscellaneous, Natural Health & Food

About orthodoxmom3

I am an Orthodox Christian wife and a mother of three that is loving the life God has given me. I wear many, many hats in this life including Christian, wife, mother, reader, writer, teacher, homeschool advocate, cook and so many more. I love to write about them all! See my About Page for more and be sure to follow An Orthodox Homeschool if you want just the homeschool posts or get ALL the posts on The Many Hats of an Orthodox Mom!

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