Do you know what these are: E620, E621, E622, E623, E624 and E625. No? Need a hint?
These are E-numbers – codes for substances that are permitted to be used as food additives. Specifically, E620 to E625 are codes for Glutamic acid and its associated glutamates.
You don’t bother to read food labels? Maybe you should. It could benefit your health. Especially if you enjoy sausages, hot dogs, chips, prepared soups, canned food, beer and similar common and popular food.
Almost all manufactured foods like those mentioned contain E621 (monosodium glutamate – MSG), especially anything that is dry and very tasty like instant noodles and potato chips. It is used to enhance the taste of food and is the main ingredient in many condiments that we pour over our food to make it taste better.
Restaurants throughout the world use it to improve the taste of their dishes. It is especially popular in Asia where it is used in copious amounts. So much so that many people have developed an intolerance to it.
Check out this video for the author’s summary of the article, which continues below.
MSG makes food taste great, but it can also lead to overeating and weight gain. According to a study published in Current Neuropharmacology, using large amounts of the substance may be potentially dangerous for the central nervous system neurons due to the known neurotoxicity of this amino acid neurotransmitter. It has been shown that injecting rodents with monosodium glutamate can lead to obesity.
MSG can cause a wide range of distressing physical reactions in some people including, stomach cramps, heart palpitations, migraine, facial pressure or tightness, tingling or burning in the face, neck and other areas.
Since so much of the food we eat is laced with MSG, you might not be aware that some of the uncomfortable symptoms you experience are as a result of ingesting MSG.
Why is MSG is so dangerous?
According to Mercola.com, Dr. Russell Blaylock, a neurosurgeon and author of Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills explains that MSG is an excitotoxin, which means it overexcites your cells to the point of damage or death, causing brain damage to varying degrees — and potentially even triggering or worsening learning disabilities, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease and more.
It gets more complicated.
According to Blaylock part of the problem is that free glutamic acid is the same neurotransmitter that your brain, nervous system, eyes, pancreas and other organs use to initiate certain processes in your body.
He quotes the FDA itself:
“Abnormal function of glutamate receptors has been linked with certain neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease and Huntington’s chorea. Injections of glutamate in laboratory animals have resulted in damage to nerve cells in the brain.”
So, although the FDA states that MGS is safe to ingest, maybe you might want to avoid it, but there’s a problem.
It’s not so easy to avoid MSG.
Companies, instead of removing MSG from their products, are using many different tricks to fool you into thinking their products are MSG-free.
MSG is hidden under many names. Anything with the word ‘protein’ or ‘yeast’ attached to it such as ‘Hydrolysed protein’ or ‘Autolysed yeast’ should be viewed with caution, as should the words ‘seasoning’ and ‘natural flavour’.
Also watch out for manufacturers that arrange the ingredients list in such a way that ‘Flavour enhancer’ is split and appears on two separate lines so it’s less obvious.