Do you know all the other names for MSG? And what is the stuff, anyway?
Monosodium glutamate, or MSG, is an artificial flavor found in thousands of processed foods, from fast food, to chips, to soup. While the FDA has classified MSG as “generally recognized as safe,” there have been numerous consumer complaints related to adverse reactions to foods containing MSG, including swelling, facial numbness, heart palpitations, nausea and weakness. MSG is used to enhance flavor in foods and is one of the most complained about additives. A reaction to MSG is actually a reaction to free glutamic acid.
MSG is best known as an additive in Chinese food, and there are many names for MSG. It is also used in garlic and onion powder, bouillon, soup stock, seasoning for potato chips and popcorn, and breaded foods such as chicken nuggets. Common symptoms related to ingestion of MSG include:
Other names for MSG include:
Often, the term ‘natural flavor’ refers to ingredients containing MSG.
Not everyone will react to MSG, so listen to your body. If you feel “off” or exhibit any negative reactions, avoid the ingredients listed above and monitor how you feel.