Is MSG Bad for You?

Do you have MSG in your kitchen cabinet? (Image: Lou Ann Clark/Pixabay)
Do you have MSG in your kitchen cabinet? (Image: Lou Ann Clark/Pixabay)

MSG has developed a bad rap, and many people avoid it, believing it’s toxic and causes bad physical reactions. There’s even a rumor that MSG causes cancer. But are these rumors true?

What we do know is that MSG makes savory foods delicious. It does this by enhancing the savory taste-active compounds in your food, and creating a party in your mouth! But don’t try eating MSG on its own—its flavor isn’t nice .

MSG, a naturally occurring amino acid found in seaweed and other plant and animal sources, has been used in Asian cooking for over 100 years to enhance flavor. At this point, both national and international bodies for the safety of food additives have given MSG the green light for human consumption. That’s why it’s still in the sauces on the supermarket shelf.

So why the big hoo-ha about MSG? The American Chemical Society (ACS) found that a select few could experience reactions to MSG when they consumed a large amount on an empty stomach, but when eaten in normal doses, it’s completely safe for people.

From current research, it appears that MSG is OK when eaten in normal amounts; so like anything, don’t go to extremes!



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