MSG Obesity

Monosodium Glutamate, I’ve recently learned, is used in the laboratory to cause obesity in animals. So, for instance, if you need obese rats to do your research, you feed them MSG, and they become obese. This is all fine and good for the lab, but when you realize that a significant portion of commercial food contains MSG, our epidemic of obesity begins to make more sense. Google “MSG Obese”.

Congress is now, of course, trying to exempt food manufacturers and their trade organizations from obesity liability. All else being equal, I’d agree, but the issue is muddied when noone knows that one of your ingredients increases appetite and causes obesity.

“… a widely used nutritional monosubstance – the flavouring agent MSG – at concentrations that only slightly surpass those found in everyday human food, exhibits significant potential for damaging the hypothalamic regulation of appetite, and thereby determines the propensity of world-wide obesity. We suggest to reconsider the recommended daily allowances of amino acids and nutritional protein, and to abstain from the popular protein-rich diets, and particularly from adding the flavouring agents MSG.” – Eur J Clin Nutr. 2005 Aug 31 – Obesity, voracity, and short stature: the impact of glutamate on the regulation of appetite – Hermanussen M, Garcia AP, Sunder M, Voigt M, Salazar V, Tresguerres JA (link).

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