MSG

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Jade Emperor

Sous Chef
Joined
Apr 12, 2023
Messages
535
Location
Australia
With thanks to Uncle Roger.
Who here uses MSG? I certainly do absolutely. I use it in place of salt, although it is a type of salt.
Chinese food headache is a myth that has been debunked all over. Maybe too much MSG, which like any other ingredient can make you feel unwell.
MSG has a softer taste than salt and you might be mortified by how many products use it. Look for 621 on your product list.
I use Ajinomoto brand what say you?
 
I've not used it in years after the hype ages ago about it causing headaches. However, I am seeing more and more that it was all a myth. Other than a softer taste, are there other benefits?
 
I've not used it in years after the hype ages ago about it causing headaches. However, I am seeing more and more that it was all a myth. Other than a softer taste, are there other benefits?

It is supposedly the best thing for that most coveted of tastes, "Umami."

I have a bag of it, and in equal portions, it supposedly has less sodium. (?) Due to kidney issues, I have to limit my sodium intake.

I haven't had a chance to use it, yet.

CD
 
I have a container of Ac'cent that I got from my in-laws' house. I keep forgetting that I have it, although I have used it a couple of times when I had something that needed a little extra umami. It did the job.

I heard about the Chinese restaurant issue many years ago and have been trying to educate people about it. A billion Asian people use it daily and don't have any issues, which says a lot to me.
 
I heard about the Chinese restaurant issue many years ago and have been trying to educate people about it. A billion Asian people use it daily and don't have any issues, which says a lot to me.
And so it should.
The story of the demonisation of MSG is fascinating. It basically boils down to the big corporations manufacturing sodium not wanting to have another player in the game. So they manufactured the myth that MSG was a bad puppy.
As you so accurately point out, Asian people have been consuming MSG for decades and it is well documented that they have a longer lifespan than western people. I would not argue that this has anything to do with MSG, far from it. But it doesn’t seem to strike them down.
As for @Kathleen question-it has no further benefit than regular cooking salt. However when you perhaps have made a dish that is too salty, you will find that the softer flavour of MSG will eliminate this.
Where the chef runs into problems (and perhaps something behind the Asian food myth) is that because the ingredient has a far softer taste, chef can easily throw too much at it.
If you use it exactly as you would use regular salt, it works really well. Don’t expect it to give you the exact same results, because it won’t. It’s a flavour enhancer, not a salt as our western palate would expect.
I clearly remember one day at the hotel where I was showcasing the new menu and all the bigwigs came to critique, which is their job.
One of the chiefs said that one of my dishes was too salty. Okay, taken on board, boss.
I replaced the salt with MSG and she came back and said it was stunning and well deserved a place on our menu.
🫠
 
Not knocking what anyone is saying, but years ago (late 1980s) my then boyfriend and I ate at a Chinese restaurant in Florida and both of us liked the food a lot, but afterwards felt flushed, short of breath, and dizzy. Ate again there a week later, same thing happened to both of us. We thought it might be an overload of MSG. Never had the same issues ever again and have eaten at many, many American-Chinese restaurants since. So what was it?
 
Probably cocaine.
No, but I did some a few weeks later all on my own! Funny, coke always made me energetic but never had the other symptoms...🤣

oh yeah, and we were both hungry again an hour after eating it so couldn't have been cocaine.

On a serious note. I see MSG in some of my favorite food products such as marinades and seasonings and I have 0 reactions.
 
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Not knocking what anyone is saying, but years ago (late 1980s) my then boyfriend and I ate at a Chinese restaurant in Florida and both of us liked the food a lot, but afterwards felt flushed, short of breath, and dizzy. Ate again there a week later, same thing happened to both of us. We thought it might be an overload of MSG. Never had the same issues ever again and have eaten at many, many American-Chinese restaurants since. So what was it?
thats food poisoning.
 
Not knocking what anyone is saying, but years ago (late 1980s) my then boyfriend and I ate at a Chinese restaurant in Florida and both of us liked the food a lot, but afterwards felt flushed, short of breath, and dizzy. Ate again there a week later, same thing happened to both of us. We thought it might be an overload of MSG. Never had the same issues ever again and have eaten at many, many American-Chinese restaurants since. So what was it?
There's a theory that since many people begin a Chinese restaurant meal with miso soup, which is high in MSG, if they're eating on an empty stomach, it may be absorbed into the bloodstream quickly, causing symptoms in sensitive people.

There's another theory (not necessarily related to your experience) that it's a result of the placebo effect. The whole idea started in the '60s. By the '80s and until about 5 years ago, many people believed MSG was dangerous, to the point that Chinese restaurants in the United States removed it from their food and advertised that they didn't use it. When millions of people believe a thing like this, it can actually manifest.

The whole thing was started by a doctor who had a reaction and speculated in a letter to the New England Journal of Medicine that MSG may have been the cause. Most studies done since then have disproved the idea.
 
There's a theory that since many people begin a Chinese restaurant meal with miso soup, which is high in MSG, if they're eating on an empty stomach, it may be absorbed into the bloodstream quickly, causing symptoms in sensitive people.

There's another theory (not necessarily related to your experience) that it's a result of the placebo effect. The whole idea started in the '60s. By the '80s and until about 5 years ago, many people believed MSG was dangerous, to the point that Chinese restaurants in the United States removed it from their food and advertised that they didn't use it. When millions of people believe a thing like this, it can actually manifest.

The whole thing was started by a doctor who had a reaction and speculated in a letter to the New England Journal of Medicine that MSG may have been the cause. Most studies done since then have disproved the idea.
placebo and attention seeking copycats.
 
There's a theory that since many people begin a Chinese restaurant meal with miso soup, which is high in MSG, if they're eating on an empty stomach, it may be absorbed into the bloodstream quickly, causing symptoms in sensitive people.

There's another theory (not necessarily related to your experience) that it's a result of the placebo effect. The whole idea started in the '60s. By the '80s and until about 5 years ago, many people believed MSG was dangerous, to the point that Chinese restaurants in the United States removed it from their food and advertised that they didn't use it. When millions of people believe a thing like this, it can actually manifest.

The whole thing was started by a doctor who had a reaction and speculated in a letter to the New England Journal of Medicine that MSG may have been the cause. Most studies done since then have disproved the idea.
I had never even heard of MSG when it occurred.
 
There's a theory that since many people begin a Chinese restaurant meal with miso soup, which is high in MSG, if they're eating on an empty stomach, it may be absorbed into the bloodstream quickly, causing symptoms in sensitive people.

There's another theory (not necessarily related to your experience) that it's a result of the placebo effect. The whole idea started in the '60s. By the '80s and until about 5 years ago, many people believed MSG was dangerous, to the point that Chinese restaurants in the United States removed it from their food and advertised that they didn't use it. When millions of people believe a thing like this, it can actually manifest.

The whole thing was started by a doctor who had a reaction and speculated in a letter to the New England Journal of Medicine that MSG may have been the cause. Most studies done since then have disproved the idea.
I’m sticking with my cocaine theory.
It holds exactly about the same weight as the miso soup idea.
Nobody seems to complain that their chicken stock powder gives them headaches. Or Lays chips, or two minute noodles or fing sausage rolls.
Guess what? They all contain 621 and we all consume it every single day without any problem.
The fact is the myth.
 
I’m sticking with my cocaine theory.
It holds exactly about the same weight as the miso soup idea.
Nobody seems to complain that their chicken stock powder gives them headaches. Or Lays chips, or two minute noodles or fing sausage rolls.
Guess what? They all contain 621 and we all consume it every single day without any problem.
The fact is the myth.
That's an awfully expensive additive!!!!

But it's really strange that I have never had any issues since then, and my parents used accent on food. I just figured someone accidentally spilled a large amount of MSG in our food at that restaurant. Twice. Never ate there again.
 
The only issue I have with MSG is the same one I have with salt. My kidneys don't handle sodium as well as they should. If I consume too much sodium, my feet, ankles and belly swell up like water balloons. I'm limited to 2,000mg of sodium per day. That's about one entree at a restaurant these days. Chefs LOVE salt.

CD
 

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