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What’s Hiding In Your Snacks?

There are times when I learn something new and I think, “How in the world did I not know this!” This happened to be the case with “MSG” or monosodium glutamate. Now most of us are aware of MSG and know it’s not good for us. We try to avoid it by asking restaurants if they are using it and we look for MSG on labels, but are we still feeling the effects of it?

MSG is known to cause headaches, flushing, sweating, facial pressure, numbness, tingling or burning in the face, neck, and other areas of the body. It also can cause rapid, fluttering heartbeats also known as palpitations, chest pain, and nausea. So imagine my surprise when a friend of mine recently brought it to my attention that some chips we had bought from the health food store contained MSG! You’d think I would have clued in because every time I ate these chips I would get a slight headache and feel gross, but I’d assumed it was something else—not the “yeast extract” listed in the ingredients on the chip label, which is actually MSG!

I know most of you already know MSG is bad for you, but you may not be aware of the forms in which you might be unknowingly digesting this flavor enhancer. Not only is MSG extremely hard to avoid if you are eating packaged foods, but its identity is also hidden in the labels. Some common names for MSG that may not alert you to its presence are:

  •     Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein
  •     Textured Vegetable Protein
  •     Yeast Extract

Not only is MSG known to cause the discomforts I talked about above, but it’s also linked to a series of health issues, including fibromyalgia, obesity, fatty liver, high insulin and blood sugar, high cholesterol, liver toxicity, metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure, disturbance to the gut-brain connection, and neurological and brain damage.

So how can you avoid MSG?

The most effective thing you can do is to stay away from packaged food items.

Buy fresh foods, and make sure to read labels! Even something as simple as fruits and vegetables from your local health food store can contain MSG.

Make your own snacks to ensure that you know what you are putting into your body.


By Rachel Doell | Daily Routine Fitness
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