Friday, February 24, 2012

Just say "NO to MSG"...

First, for those of you New Yorkers, this post has absolutely nothing to do with Madison Square Garden or tearing it down. Life does exist beyond the boarders of NYC people... So, what this post does refer to are those flashing neon signs that most of you have seen in the windows of a Chinese Restaurant. Sounds familiar now huh? Monosodium Glutamate, or commonly referred to as MSG, is the controversial health issue here. MSG is made from fermented sugar beet or sugar cane molasses. It is the salt version of Glutamic Acid. Though, rather than tasting like salt, it has a sweetening taste. As it is, our bodies produce enough of it so there is no need to supplement it in to our diet. But, it is that fact that MSG is commonly used as seasoning with Chinese cooking that is one of the issues. Soy Sauce for example. You see, when used as a seasoning, MSG alerts your taste buds glutamate receptors to enhance the foods flavors. In layman's terms, that means yum, yum, I WANT MORE and MORE. Now that we understand that MSG can become somewhat addictive, the issue comes down to the side effects. These side effects range from: headaches, dizziness, chest pains, to even an Alzheimer's effect of loss of memory. These side effects have been labeled as "The Chinese Restaurant Syndrome". Now, don't get me wrong. MSG is not only in Chinese foods, but is also in many other Asian culture dishes. And yes, let's not forget it's being used in many processed and frozen foods. Got to get that addictive sweetening taste ya know. As a matter of fact, the seasoning brand "Accent", that has been around for a long time, is LOADED WITH MSG. No wonder why I liked putting it on my steaks so much. But, the name "Accent" seemed so friendly and  harmless... If you eat foods with MSG, just remember to limit them and drink a lot of water to flush it through your body.

Monosodium Glutamate Definition Link

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