Monosodium glutamate is a widely used food additive and generally, it is considered to be harmful. But recently it is approved by the Food and Drug Administration. And MSG is widely used in fast foods, frozen meals, canned vegetables, soups, and processed meats.
Uses & Health Risks Of MSG
There are so many health issues reported after the continuous use of MSG-contained foods.
So, this article will examine Monosodium glutamate and explain whether MSG is harmful to your health.
What Is MSG?
MSG stands for Monosodium Glutamate and it is the sodium salt of glutamic acid. It is a flavor enhancer used in commercial foods. MSG does not have color or texture of its own. it does not put any external taste to the food. It only increases the natural flavor of the food.
MSG Used In Foods
- Fast Foods:
Fast foods, especially Chinese foods contain monosodium glutamate. It increases the taste and smell of the food.
So it generates more revenue through fast food. But, now most restaurants do not use MSG in foods. But a few of them are using MSG.
- Chips and snacks food:
Manufacturers use MSG in chips to enhance the flavor. The chips like Doritos, Pringles, Lay’s potatoes, and Cheetos contain Monosodium Glutamate.
Apart from chips, certain snacks also contain MSG and it is better to read the description added in the pack.
- Seasoning blends:
Seasoning blends are used to add salty, spicy savory to the foods like stews, soups, etc.
Many seasoning blends contain MSG to add a salty taste without adding enough salt. It is much cheaper for the manufacturers.
- Frozen meals:
Most of the frozen meals contain Monosodium Glutamate. Many companies use it for their benefit. Because it is an easy way to maintain the flavor.
Other than meals, many frozen products including vegetables, cheese, and pizzas have MSG.
Many canned soups contain MSG to add flavor. It increases the carving of the customers. Other than canned soups, soup mixes also contain MSG.
- Processed meats:
Processed meats such as sausage, beef jerky, deli meats, and hot dogs contain MSG.
The manufacturers use MSG to increase the flavor and reduce the sodium content without changing the taste.
Condiments such as mayonnaise, ketchup, hot sauce, and mustard contain MSG. These condiments contain other preservatives also and it increases the flavors of the condiments.
- Instant noodles:
Instant noodles contain MSG and multiple kinds of research found that instant noodles cause many health issues such as cancer.
Is MSG Harmful?
MSG is considered to be a harmful preservative. Because it causes many health issues both mild and severe.
The presence of MSG in foods can increase cravings and weight gain. MSG is the reason for heart disease, cancer, and liver damage too.
Here is the list of Health risks by MSG:
- Increase hunger: Over usage of MSG increases your hunger. MSG blocks the message to your brain that you have eaten enough.
- Obesity: MSG is the reason for weight gain. The food that contains MSG will increase your appetite and you eat lots of food. Gradually you gain more weight.
- Liver damage: The usage of MSG can make your liver fatty and inflamed which leads to severe damage to the liver including cancer.
- Blood sugar fluctuations: Usage of MSG can cause blood glucose fluctuations. Many kinds of research found that there is a linear inverse relationship between blood glucose level and MSG intake.
- Nerve damage: MSG damages nerves by stimulating excessive glutamate levels in the brain. It can lead to the death of the brain cells too.
- Risk of metabolic syndrome: MSG usage increases the risk of metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome means the raising of blood pressure, blood sugar, body fat, and cholesterol.
- Chronic disease: MSG can cause several chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. So, the effect of MSG can be long-term also.
- Behavioral problems: MSG consumption damages nerves and causes behavioral problems like mood swings, depression, mental confusion, anxiety, and more. Normally, these types of issues are seen in children. But there is a chance for adults too.
The changing food habits cause lots of health issues and we should be aware of the side effects of the additives and preservatives used in junk food. MSG or Monosodium Glutamate is one of the main food additives in modern food habits. MSG is approved by the FDA. However, there are a lot of side effects reported by the use of MSG.
This article discusses the harmful side of Monosodium Glutamate and hopes you understand the health issues related to MSG.
Try to avoid the use of MSG and keep a healthy life.