I've just been reading an article by Dr. Joseph Mercola on the dangers of MSG. It can be linked to obesity, eye damage,depression, headaches, fatigue, disorientation, and depression. It took me back to my doctoral classes when I read Dr.Russell Blaylocks' book "Excitotoxins-the taste that kills."
Blaylock explains that MSG is an exitotoxin, which means it overexcites your cells to the point of distress to causing brain damage to varying degrees. Potentially, it can trigger or worsen learning disabilites, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease.
It been estimated that up to 40 percent of the population may be sensitive to MSG.
MSG is used in crackers, meats, canned soups, salad dressings, frozen dinners, or in most restuarants and the majority of processed foods. It is more than just a seasoning, such as salt and pepper. It enhances the flavor of foods. Chemically, MSG is 78 percent glutamic acid, 21 percent sodium, and up to 1 percent contaminants.
Studies have shown that the body uses glutamate, and amino acid, as nerve impulse transmitter in the brain and other parts of the body, such as the heart.
According to Blaylock, when an excess of food borne excitotoxins, such as MSG,
hydrolgyzed protein, soy protein, natural flavorings, sodium caseinate, and aspartate, are consumed, these glutamate receptors are over-stimulated producing cardiac arrhythmias. When magnesium levels are low, as seen in athletes, the glutamate receptors are so sensitive that even low levels can result in cardiac arrhythmias and in some cases death.
In 1959, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) labled MSG as "Generally Recognized as Safe" (GRAS), but ten years later a medical conidtion known as "Chinese Restuarant Syndrome,"described the side effects after eating MSG. These ranged from numbness to heart palpitaions. Today that syndrome is called "MSG Symptom Complex," which the FDA describes as "short term reactions" to MSG. The FDA adds these symptoms of numbness, burning sensation, tingling, chest pain, difficulty breathing, headache,weakness, drowsiness.
If a food is processed, you can assume it contains MSG. Here is a partial list of ingredients that contain MSG. Yeast extract, yeast food, yeast nutrient, autolyzed yeast, Calcium caeinate, gelatin glutamate, textured protein, monsodium glutamate, sodium casenate, and soy sauce.
These ingredients often contain MSG or create MSG during processing. Powered milk, citric acid, corn starch, pectin, anything protein or enzyme modified, or anything ultra-pastuerized, whey protein, and corn starch.
Avoid this toxin by eating a whole foods fresh food diet.