Mono-sodium Glutamate (MSG) is a flavor enhancer that’s known widely as an addition to Chinese food, but it is actually added to thousands of the foods you eat everyday. MSG is used by food manufacturers as a very effective way to amplify the taste of your food. Basically salty foods taste saltier and sweeter foods taste sweeter.


What Are the Health Concerns of MSG?

Board-certified neurosurgeon, Dr. Russell Blaylock, explains in his book, “Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills.”, that MSG is an excitotoxin. This means that it overexcites your cells to the point of damage or death. The result of which can lead to brain damage to varying degrees and potentially even triggering or worsening Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease and more.

Aside from the potential long term effects of MSG, there are also some immediate side effects that are commonly exhibited by those that consume it.

Some of these side effects include:

  • Headaches
  • Fatigue and disorientation
  • Depression
  • Nausea
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Weakness

This is clearly a nasty substance that we should all try to avoid! However, if we are not consistently reading the labels of our food we may find that we are ingesting a large amount of MSG without knowing it.

Food Manufacturers are Tricky

More and more people are becoming wise to the potential damaging effects of MSG. As a reaction to this awareness the food manufacturers have made changes, but not the ones we would like them to take. As opposed to removing MSG, most of them just try to hide the fact that MSG is an ingredient. They do this by using names that you would never associate with MSG. There are over 40 labeled ingredients that contain MSG.

How do I avoid Exposure to MSG?

As general rule, if a food is processed there is a good chance it contains some form of MSG. If you stick to whole foods (basically the outside aisle of the grocery store) you will avoid this toxin. When eating at restaurants, ask your server which menu items are MSG-free. The only place you can be certain you will not be exposed to MSG is your own kitchen, so cook your own meals as much as possible. When eating items out of any package, be sure to read the labels closely, and remember that MSG can come under many different names.

Click here for a list of the ingredients that contain glutamic acid (MSG).

What do you think about the food manufacturers insistence of including MSG in their products? Please give your comments and questions below.

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