Today I want to talk about MSG and how healthier dieting is still considered to be a “bad” [or I’d say shameful] habit. I want to start with MSG because I have been planning to write about it for quite a while now. It is something I have re-discovered for myself several months ago. I must also add that it is a little hard to stay impersonal when discussing this topic so if I go a little too personal I apologise in advance J Nutrition is one of the topics of my passion as well as fitness and I do get carried away from time to time. It is also simply a very interesting topic!
MSG [and I always get the letters misallocated J] is monosodium glutamate which is a food taste enhancer. Many yummy cousins are soaked in MSG making so many foods irresistible. Chinese take away [and in the restaurants] is one of the meals I have always been a big fan of. However I would always get very swollen after every chinse dinner. Therefore I am going to jump into the main reason of this post straight away: for some people MSG is fatal.
Although it is so popular and also absolutely legal and health organisations approved, for many sensitive adults MGS additive is pretty much poison. A very yummy for the most, MSG might cause migraine headaches, tachycardia, skin rash, irritable bowels, seizures, depression, and all of the other MSG-induced maladies. I personally, get highly dehydrated and my face goes double its size, sometimes itchy skin is another “pleasant” consequence.
Now MGS enhances flavour, and, without exception, it is added because the food being prepared for sale to the public is of low quality due to cheap ingredients or due to too long shelf life. Sounds fairly sad, doesn’t it. Of course it is great that it preserves food from going off, for example sausages but to me it is slightly worrying that products which are meant to go off say in a week stay fresh for months.
Food is the same business as any other. That is why food is quicker and tastier however poorer in quality and leads to obesity. Remember several centuries ago smoking was considered healthy? Well, now when we are smarter and finally realized that smoking is slowly killing I believe it is time to be more nutrition aware.
Health is often something we see change very late in life. It is a slow change and often occurs all of a sudden. Of course it is a result of a graduate build up. But we do not see the graduate part of it, only the result. Remember like aspartame, MSG is an excitotoxin, a substance that overexcites neurons to the point of cell damage and, eventually, cell death. Additionally, it has been established by scientists that MSG causes obesity. Therefore if you care slightly less about your health because you are 18 and blossom, you might notice the how you jumped from size 10 to size 14 one day. It did not happen one day I tell you. “Studies have shown that people who eat food laced with MSG eat more of it, and faster than food that does not have this additive”. Sounds like a drug, doesn’t it. Now imagine if kids consume MSG all the time with their chips, instant noodle, etc. Not a pretty picture! To make it even worse, “The Slow Poisoning of America” reveals the connection between MSG and the epidemic of Autism.
While tobacco, MSG and alcohol are still legal and most likely will always be, we still do have a choice of NOT choosing them. I am not saying I am an angel and avoid all kind of drugs in life. But this post is not about me, isn’t it. Regardless, I do not really like chocolate I try my best to stay away from any kind of addictive substances. And while tobacco and alcohol are chased by social advertising, healthy eating is not something government targeting just yet. If you remember or know at all, when you go to the cinemas in Sydney, right before the movie and all the commercials they show this middle age man showing how people end up literally suffocating due to smoking. It is a very vivid ad. Australian government is running a whole number of those very gross vivid images of people dying because of smoking or cancer eating smokers cells etc etc etc. Seriously I want to vomit every time! Fair enough smoking is bad and after centuries of being sure it’s healthy we are trying to fight the habit. Food also killing people! Why no one is still running ads promoting healthier life style including increased fitness and decreased shit food consumption.
I must say as soon as I say “this food is not healthy” or “no thank you I don’t want a drink, I am training tomorrow” or “no thank you I already had carbs today” I get looked at as if I was from Mars. I find it VERY sad! When the majority finds you weird for desperate desire to be healthier and fitter, you do slack sometimes a little and so do I. What I guess I am trying to say is that counting calories, planning meals, excluding certain products, exercising and the rest of fun is considered “bad” habit, snobbism or simply stupid. Sometime it is just a face with overwhelming disgust on it when I say “it’s fairly late and I am tired I will go home now, training tomorrow, thank you for your hospitality” [or something that kind you know]. It makes me thing that fitness, enough rest and all the rest of activities our bodies require for normal functioning are seen as some shameful deeds.
Many people say “well do not listen what others say, just do what you think/know is right”. And I decided to do so! You know what, yes many “friends” turnaround from you but I guess this is how you know they have never been your friends, apparently. I have learnt now not to share my excitement and news with friends because most of the time the comment will be “OMG you and your gym” or “Oh come on, stop this carbs vs protein shit” or “OMG it’s so you”. Therefore I am saying that I am as a consumer like many others want to encourage people to use their buying power to STOP obtaining any MSG containing products. Back to basics! Cook! Cook fresh food and eat it fresh! Get rid of snacks! Snack organic if you really need to snack! I am aware that it is not as easy as it is said. I personally hate cooking and have zero cooking skills. I also mix fresh garden salad with canned fish and totally adore gherkins.
Now I have found one of the articles on which foods often contain MSG in order for you to be able to avoid them or at least make sure they do not contain the additive. Most of the times, MSG would be present in meat. Of course food in a restaurant is most likely to be pretty much soaked in the additive to preserve it. Of course processed food including canned vegetables, soups, sauces, crackers and frozen foods are full of the additives. In order to eliminate the MSG consumption or at least reduce it check the labels out, making sure the food you are buying is MSG-free. If you are dining out in the restaurant you could ask the staff to inform you whether they are using MSG or not and request to omit it. There are always ways around MSG you just need to find them. I am aware though that it is not always as easy but I guarantee there is always a way. You will find yours.
Now, to be able to find your way you need to make sure you know which products are MSG-free. Surprisingly, many store-bought sauces, seasonings and dressings like gravy, ranch salad dressing, seasoning salt, vegetable dips and more contain high amounts of MSG. I said surprisingly because sauces are something people never see evil in. Also we often use only a little bit of sauce. But now imagine this “a little” bit but every day over 20-30 years. It is a giant amount of MSG in your organism now. Try to stick with organic veggies, fruits and dairy and naturally raised meats.
Have a read around, learn labels, ask people, google info, be interested … its all you need to educate yourself about what you put in your mouth, I am sure if foods had packages like cigarettes have with pictures of what this food in particular would do to you, people would care more about nutrition.
Bone Appetite 🙂