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MSG in your Pregnancy Diet

Posted on January 23rd, 2013 by | 1 views
by Nisha Obaidullah - The 9 Month Club
Safe and Effective Pregnancy Fitness Coaching for Optimal Pregnancy Health

Did you ever see the Dr Seuss film "Horton Hears a Who?" I loved that film for the simple fact that it could so easily be true! Horton is an elephant who finds a speck resting on a clover. But on that speck is a whole world of tiny people called the Who's.

Nobody believed Horton that the Who's existed until the whole of Whoville got together and spoke up with one voice to protest against Horton being exiled for what he believed in.

I can relate to this because in the pregnancy fitness world I feel like I am one of the Who's every day! You see there are so many big fat companies paying big bucks to the health agencies and scientific laboratories and spinning a big marketing web designed to persuade consumers into believing everything they say, that the truth suddenly becomes "another scare story" or "sensationalism".

The problem is that the pregnancy health industry is so PC that either people are too scared to stand up and say what they really think, or they are brainwashed into believing all the rubbish that is spouted by the health agencies just like everyone else.

The biggest thing that constantly drives me insane is the risks that food manufacturers take when it comes to the health of their pregnant consumers and their unborn babies. The second thing is the risks they take with those babies once they are born.

This weekend I went on one of the health and fitness industrys most well respected and authoritative courses on advanced Kinetic Chain Theory and Asessment. That probably means nothing to you apart from a load of gobbledeegook but the stuff I learnt is going to affect you in a BIG way!!

One thing that shocked me beyond belief and made me scared first and foremost for my own baby and secondly for all of my pregnant clients, friends and readers was a little known fact about MSG and how seriously it can affect your pregnancy health.

Now I think that most of us know full well that MSG during pregnancy is bad for us, right? There was a big panic a few years ago and a lot of Chinese restaurants banned it from their food ingredients, but what none of us know (or very few of us) is that MSG can come under different guises of at least 40 different names that we would never suspect AND because it is combined with other food additives, the food manufacturers are NOT REQUIRED to list it as an ingredient on the label which makes it very difficult to exclude
from your pregnancy diet

And do you know where it is most widely used?

In BABY FOOD......

I know.  I hear you I was just as shocked, if not more so than you and my heart dropped out of my chest when I thought of all the instances where I have given my own son those pre-packaged organic baby foods over the last few months and thought that natural spices meant naturally sourced spices.  Apparently the Food Agencies dont require it to be listed if it is combined with something else. So after my shock dissipated a little, I did some serious digging.

What is MSG?

MSG comes from glutamic acid which is found in many natural foods like tomatoes, wheat, mushrooms, molasses and corn. It is even present in breastmilk and functions as a neurotransmitter. In this natural form it is known as L-glutamic acid. When broken down by our normal digestive process it is harmless but in a factory the glutamic acid is made free by various processes which you will recognise hydrolysed, autolysed, modified or fermented by harsh chemicals, bacteria or enzymes.

These processes then produce a white crystallised substance which looks similar to sugar MSG. MSG is then used as a component of food additives such as hydrolysed protein, whey protein, yeast extract, natural flavouring, spice extract, natural spices.. the list goes on. Because it is used as a component, the Food Agencies dont require it to be listed as MSG.

What Does It Do To Us?

MSG is an excitatory neurotransmitter that destroys synapses and nerve cells in the brain and body. It runs around the body telling all of our nerve cells to FIRE, FIRE, FIRE!!! But what happens when they get overstimulated and fire all the time? They die.

The hypothalamus uses glutamate as a neurotransmitter and is also responsible for controlling fear, rage, hunger and cold. When hypothalamus cells die as a result of overstimulation by glutamate it results in things like ADD, ADHD, obesity and seizures.

Dr. Liane Reif-Lehrer, Harvard Medical School, has done extensive research on this, including trials on removing MSG from the diets of children with seizures and convulsions which resulted in a complete and full cure of the affectation.

MSG during Pregnancy

It is a common belief that the placenta is able to protect or at least partially shield the developping foetus from toxins such as MSG but in fact the opposite occurs. The placenta in primates (yep, that includes us) maintains amino acids in significantly HIGHER concentrations than found in the maternal circulation. The ratio is in fact is even greater than 2:1!
This means your baby is getting double the amount of neurotoxins that you are getting.

Now considering the very delicate balance of the developping nervous system, that spells BAD NEWS.

Symptoms of MSG Toxicity

One of the problems with MSG toxicity is that the symptoms can easily be disregarded as something else.

Common symptoms include:

  • IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) / Colitis
  • Constipation/diahorrhea
  • Asthma
  • Hormonal symptoms like irritability, mood swings, temper, rage and hostility
  • Ulcers and sores in the mouth
  • Sleep disorders
  • Memory loss
  • Migraine
  • Chronic cough
  • The list goes on

So what can we do to protect our little ones from this horrible neurotoxin?

  • Avoid ALL pre-packaged, processed food and diligently check the labels of everything you put on the table or in your mouth.
  • Where possible cook everything from scratch using organic whole ingredients
  • Speak to your childrens' school about their menu and what they can and cant have from it
  • Check the list below for common names:

Hidden Names for MSG

The following substances contain the highest percentage of factory created free glutamate, with MSG containing 78%:

  • 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)

The following substances contain some factory created free glutamate in varying amounts. Please note that some food labels list several of these items, which can add up to a considerable and dangerous amount in one product:

  • Malted Barley (flavor) Natural Flavors, Flavors, Flavoring
  • Modified food starch
  • Barley malt Reaction Flavors Rice syrup or brown rice syrup
  • Malt Extract or Flavoring Natural Chicken, Beef, or Pork, Flavoring
  • Seasonings (Most assume this means salt, pepper, or spices and herbs, which sometimes it is.)
  • Lipolyzed butter fat
  • Maltodextrin, dextrose, dextrates
  • Soy Sauce or Extract Low or No Fat items
  • Caramel Flavoring (coloring) Soy Protein
  • Corn syrup and corn syrup solids, high fructose corn syrup
  • Stock Soy Protein Isolate or Concentrate
  • Citric Acid (when processed from corn)
  • Broth Cornstarch fructose (made from corn) Milk Powder
  • Bouillon Flowing Agents Dry Milk Solids
  • Carrageenan Wheat, rice, corn, or oat protein
  • Protein Fortified Milk
  • Whey Protein or Whey Anything enriched or vitamin enriched Annatto
  • Whey Protein Isolate or Concentrate Protein fortified anything Spice
  • Pectin Enzyme modified proteins Gums (guar and vegetable)
  • Protease Ultra-pasteurized dairy products Dough Conditioners
  • Protease enzymes Fermented proteins Yeast Nutrients
  • Lecithin Gluten and gluten flour Protein powders: whey, soy, oat, rice (as in protein bars shakes and body building drinks)
  • Amino acids (as in Braggs liquid amino acids and chelated to vitamins)
  • Algae, phytoplankton, sea vegetable, wheat/ barley grass powders
  • European numbers for glutamate containing additives:
  • 620 625
  • 621 627
  • 622 631
  • 623 635
  • 624


So what do you think? Are you shocked like I was?

Do you think manufacturers should be allowed to get away with this?

Nisha is the UK's leading expert on safe and effective pregnancy health and author and creator of The 9 Month Club Pregnancy Fitness Coaching System. For more information on the safest and most effective route to pregnancy health and fitness get Nisha's latest free video series "Top 20 Rules for Safe and Effective Pregnancy Fitness" at Or visit

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