Is MSG toxic?

In Reading Ingredients and Labels, Toxic Chemicals in Food, Toxic Food Additives on April 5, 2011 by organicconversion Tagged: , , , , , , , , ,



Is MSG Toxic?

by Kristina Blasen (2011)

MSG stands for Monosodium glutamate. The stance the FDA has taken is that MSG is a safe food additive, though it acknowledges that some people may be “sensitive” to it. MSG is hiding in just about every processed food product these days. Food companies say it is a “flavor enhancer”. The reason it is added to food is that it makes people eat more. It is highly addictive. In science, they use it to make rats and mice fat since none are fat in nature.

MSG goes by many different names. When you are checking out food ingredients and nutrition labels look for these names which contain 78% MSG:

MSG Gelatin Calcium Caseinate
Monosodium glutamate Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein (HVP) Textured Protein
Monopotassium glutamate Hydrolyzed Plant Protein (HPP) Yeast Extract
Glutamate Autolyzed Plant Protein Yeast food or nutrient
Glutamic Acid Sodium Caseinate Autolyzed Yeast
Vegetable Protein Extract Senomyx (wheat extract labeled as artificial flavor)

(This table is from the “MSG Myth” website. Read the entire article and find more sources of MSG that may be in your food under additional names here:

Check out the signs of MSG toxicity: (Table is from:

1. Severe headache 12. Shortness of breath, chest pains, asthma 23. Slowed speech
2. Nausea, diarrhea, vomiting 13. Swelling, pain, or numbness of hands, feet, jaw 24. Chronic bronchitis-like symptoms, allergy reactions, dry cough, hoarseness or sore throat
3. Irregular heart beat or blood pressure, racing heart 14. Pain in joints or bones 25. Heavy, weak feeling in arms and legs
4. Depression or mood change, bipolar, SAD 15. Flushing or tingling in face, chest, pressure behind eyes 26. Irritable bowel or colitis
5. Abdominal pain, cramps, bloating, colitis, IBS 16. Gagging reflex or difficulty swallowing 27. Attention deficit disorder, anxiety attacks, rage, panic attacks
6. Balance problems, dizziness, or seizures, mini-strokes 17. Hyperactivity, behavioral problems 28. Neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s, fibromyalgia, MS, Parkinson’s
7. Tenderness in localized areas, neck, back, etc. 18. Chronic post nasal drip 29. Pressure behind eyes or on head, neck, shoulders
8. Sleep disorders 19. Skin rash, itching, hives 30. ADD, ADHD, Rage Disorder
9. Blurred vision or difficulty breathing 20. Bloated face, dark circles under strained eyes 31. Asthma
10. Chronic fatigue or sleepiness 21. Extreme thirst or dry mouth 32. Weight problems, obesity, hypoglycemia
11. Excessive perspiring or shuddering and chills 22. Difficulty concentrating and poor memory

It isn’t scientific, but here is an interesting article where a woman shares how eliminating all sources of MSG and switching to an all organic diet reversed her MS (multiple sclerosis) symptoms.

One of her posts shows how MSG toxicity symptoms mirror MS symptoms which I found interesting:


2 Responses to “Is MSG toxic?”

  1. I am very allergic. I would get so violently sick everytime we went to a Chinese Restaurant. They aren’t suppose to be adding it to the food anymore. I would get bad Migranes, but some peoples throats would swell up which could cause death I would think.
    Another great article Kristina. Thank you, Margene

  2. Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease in which the nerves of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) to degenerate. Myelin, which provides a covering or insulation for nerves, improves the conduction of impulses along the nerves and also is important for maintaining the health of the nerves. In multiple sclerosis, inflammation causes the myelin to disappear. Consequently, the electrical impulses that travel along the nerves decelerate, that is, become slower. In addition, the nerves themselves are damaged. As more and more nerves are affected, a person experiences a progressive interference with functions that are controlled by the nervous system, such as vision, speech, walking, writing, and memory.

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