The most common and most dangerous of food additives, is MSG (monosodium glutamate), and it is cleverly concealed on food labels in many seemingly benign words and language. MSG is added to over 70% of all fast food, and some fast foods chains include MSG in every single food item on their menu. In addition, the majority of all packaged and processed food products on grocery store shelves, have MSG in their product. And, while more people are becoming conscious of reading food packaging labels, manufacturers are side-stepping the use of the word ‘MSG’, and are instead using other various label terms, in an effort to gloss over the fact that MSG is in their product.
Other Names of MSG
yeast extract (very common)
spices (very common)
flavoring (very common)
autolyzed yeast (very common)
hydrolyzed corn gluten
Effects of MSG
MSG overstimulates nerve cells to damage and even destroy them. MSG disrupts natural hunger-control hormones and mechanisms in the body, overriding the brain’s signals to tell the body that it is full, and to stop eating. MSG is a known addictive agent, and manufacturers add it to their products knowing, with the obvious intent of wanting the consumer to become addicted to their food products. MSG triggers cravings, and triples your risk of being overweight. It also causes headaches, fatigue, brain fog, unusual stress and disturbances in the endocrine system.
The three best things you can do to significantly reduce your intake of MSG, is to:
1. Avoid fast food.
2. Avoid all processed foods items in the grocery store. (buy fresh ingredients only)
3. Minimize your dining at chain restaurants, whose meals typically include MSG and MSG derivatives.
In addition to avoiding the biggest offenders of MSG use, below are 3 things you can do to help block MSG absorption, as well as reduce and reverse the damage already done from MSG intake.
Eat These Vegetables – MSG causes oxidative damage to the brain, where it disrupts and damages receptors for the appetite-controlling hormone leptin. This impairs the brains natural hunger-control responses, causing excessive food consumption and weight gain. To help fend off this oxidative damage and disruption of leptin production, you want to make sure you are eating at least 4 servings of green and bright-colored vegetables daily. Bright-colored produce, are rich in antioxidants and beta-carotene, which neutralize harmful oxidation, as well as trigger cellular repair. Some suggested vegetables, include red and yellow peppers, carrots and broccoli. You should be eating more than 4 servings of vegetables daily, but 4 is all it takes, to help reverse MSG damage and balance the brain’s leptin response in just days. Your veggies should ideally be fresh as much as possible.
Use These Herbs – As soon as MSG is consumed, it triggers the overproduction of thromboxanes and prostaglandins, both of which are inflammatory biochemicals that can cause headaches and muscle soreness. Again, avoidance of MSG foods is your best option, but there are also some herbs that have proved to effectively prevent some of the damage caused by MSG. Fresh (not dried) oregano, rosemary and ginger, all contain natural plant compounds, such as gingerol and rosmarinic acid, which block the output of the inflammatories prostaglandin and thromboxane in the body.
Supplement With Magnesium – The body requires the mineral magnesium, to regulate nerve signals and manage stress. Because MSG overstimulates nerve cells, it quickly saps up magnesium stores from the body, leaving you deficient in this essential mineral. Most of the population is actually severely deficient in magnesium, and the abundance of MSG in the commercial food supply is a key factor. In addition, a shortage of magnesium can lead to muscle pain and cramping, heart irregularities, nervous system disorders and chronic stress. Just about everybody should be supplementing with a quality magnesium supplement, and the suggested dosage is 500 mg twice a day. CAUTION: This is not a time to buy cheap discount store magnesium supplements, since the majority of them actually contain MSG derivative binders, the very thing you are trying to avoid.
Bon Veggie Apettit!
Gina ‘The Veggie Goddess’ Matthews