This is a worse poison than alcohol, nicotine, and many other drugs. Undoubtedly, this silent killer is part of your kitchen cabinet. It is monosodium glutamate (MSG), a flavor enhancer which is regularly added to processed food or foods in the restaurant.
What is monosodium glutamate?
It is the sodium salt of glutamic acid. Glutamate is a naturally occurring amino acid which is part of almost all foods. High-protein foods, such as dairy products, meat and fish and many vegetables contain this flavor enhancer. The MSG is used for flavoring and some foods, such as mushrooms and tomatoes, have high levels of naturally occurring glutamate. The glutamate is also produced by the human body and it is crucial for the proper function.
The MSG has a meaty and savory taste, and it produces a similar flavoring to the glutamate that occurs naturally in foods. Frozen, canned foods, spice mixes, salad dressing, and dry soups contain this additive. Some countries even use it as a table-top seasoning.
You can find it under many names, such as Ajinomoto, Vetsin, Accent, yeast extract, hydrolyzed protein, and flavoring. However, this food additive is detrimental to the health.
The Harmful Effects of MSG
Regular consumption of MSG may result in various health problems, such as cancer, autism, heart problems, learning disorders, behavioral problems, obesity, hormonal imbalance, damage to the retina, eye damage, nausea, drowsiness, weakness, headaches, and asthma.
Hence, this food additive has adverse effects on many parts of your body, including muscles, nerves, skin, stomach, eyes, respiration, intestines, and heart.
Ways to Avoid MSG
Fortunately, MSG doesn’t affect some people. On the other hand, some people have severe sensitivity to it. Therefore, it is advisable to avoid using MSG. In order to do so, you should:
- Avoid foods and chemical products which are labeled to contain ingredients as “hydrolyzed,” “protein,” or “amino acids.
- Buy fresh and natural ingredients and cook them yourself, instead of using processed food.
- Use fresh spices and herbs to flavor your food.