Saturday, August 6, 2011

You Are What You Eat

Originally written and posted August 6th, 2010.

...and drink, and smell, and wash your hair with....but I'm just talking about what you eat this time around.

A long time ago (several years now) we pretty much cut monosodium glutamate (MSG) out of our diet. It's one of those things that happens to be in everything processed, so cutting out all processed foods helped. Any kind of pre-assembled anything has MSG in it, including pre-made sauces, dips, and spices. MSG can also be camoflauged under other names....hydrolyzed soy protien, etc. (See list below) so you can't just be on guard against "MSG." It's much more than just that. We haven't been as strict as we could, or should, have been...we just tried to avoid the obvious foods that we knew would have MSG on the label. (So, in essence, we started making a LOT of homemade stuff!) And even then, we still buy stuff that we know is bad, but just every now and then, which is still wrong, being that we know better.

Since we've cut MSG out, we sometimes notice adverse reactions after eating a meal out, or something like that. Usually it's just a slight headache, mostly after eating at some Chinese restaurants. We can usually tell if we've had a little MSG that way.

Several weeks ago, we were given some Ragu sauce. We never use those sorts of sauces, but since it was a gift, (and by golly...wasn't that easy! Just brown the meat and add the sauce...voila, we have supper!) I used it one evening. The next day, I felt terrible. I had a headache, my stomach wasn't feeling right, and I just felt yucky all over. I went through what I had eaten the day before, and the Ragu sauce was the only thing out of the ordinary. I went through the trash and pulled out that jar. (It was still on top, thankfully!) One of the ingredients was "spices" which can also mask MSG. Since I was feeling the way I was, and since that was the only change in my diet, I assumed that MSG was in the Ragu sauce, under "spices."

Last Satuday was Dave's birthday. We had some friends over and we grilled out hamburgers. I had wanted to make my homemade guacamole, to have with tortilla chips, but our Walmart didn't have any avacodos. We were talking about potato salad instead, but we were too busy with other stuff to make it by then, so Dad went back to the store and just picked up some chips and dip. We had Lay's Kettle Cooked Potato Chips with French Onion Dip, Tortilla Chips with Spinach Dip, and then Cheetos and Doritos. For lunch I ate the French Onion dip, as well as a little Spinach Dip. For Dave's birthday cake, we made Dirt Cake, which is all just boxed stuff mixed up. (Boxed pudding mixes, Oreos, etc...) Very bad for you, but we make it very little, and Dave loves it. After our guests left, we didn't really want any substantial supper, so we just ate chips and dip. You know, where you just keep getting more and more (that mindless eating, where you're not even hungry) An interesting side note; I remember hearing or reading once that MSG is also addictive...hence the "Betcha can't eat just one!" So, we just ate and ate those chips and that dip Saturday night. I ate more dip then than I did for lunch...maybe a couple of tablespoons. I knew the dip had MSG in it, as well as the Cheetos and Doritos, but we eat them so rarely, I wasn't worried too much about it. (After the little research I've done in the last little while, I should've been.) And to be honest, I thought it sounded a little hypochondriatical to say "oh, I've got a headache...I must've eaten MSG." It just sounds wimpy! It's not wimpy; it's the expression of the effects of toxic poisoning!!!

Sunday morning, I got up and started getting busy getting ready for church. I wasn't feeling bad...just tired, but that's usual for Sunday mornings for me. It wasn't until I had taken a shower and was drying my hair and then I just started feeling queasy. I finished getting ready, and layed down for a little while, until everyone else was ready to go. I wasn't feeling well at all, but I decided to go to church anyway. Since we stay all day, it would've messed all the plans up if I were to stay home, so I just sucked it up and got in the truck! I wasn't feeling too bad as I sat in church, and then we went and held our scripture signs on the street after church. We went back to the church and ate our meal, then went to McDonald's to get online. I really, really wanted to take a nap instead, because I was still so tired and lethargic feeling, but I had several blogs that needed posting, pictures to be put up, and other important things that really needed doing, so we went. I just felt awful the whole time, though, and my headache kept getting worse and worse. We went back to the church a little earlier this time, but it wasn't enough time to lay down. When we got back, Mom was giving the little boys some ginger snaps and those little bear crackers for a snack, so I ate a couple of those. After I ate those, I was sitting there thinking "I'm going to be sick, right here in the church." I had a sudden wave of nausea, and I was sure wishing I could go home about then! But we weren't going home, and it was about time for church to start, so I went and sat in my place. I felt SO terrible! My headache was still so bad...I love the loud singing at our church, but then it was painful to me, and the lights were hurting me too. I'm usually not very sensitive to sound and light when I have a headache, but this was bad. I ended up going out and sitting in the basement until church was over, and then I went out to the truck and and waited for everyone to be ready to leave. We finally got home (it seemed like it took forever to make that 35 minute drive this time!) and I went straight to bed. I never have a problem going to sleep, but I couldn't go to sleep for the longest time, and the whole time my head felt like it was going to split. The next morning when I woke up, everything was fine again...back to normal. But the day before was a long, miserable day....and if you ask anyone from church, I'm sure they'd tell you I looked like death warmed over!!!

I'll never eat French Onion Dip again. (Mom said she was going to write that down and hold me to it!)

I'm sure most people would call me paranoid or something, but you didn't go through what I went through! After doing a little more research on MSG, I'm even more convinced of just how bad it is. Here is a list of ingredients that always contain MSG*...

monosodium glutamate
monopotassium glutamate
glutamic acid
hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HVP)
hydolyzed plant protein (HPP)
autolyzed plant protein
sodium caseinate
calcium caseinate
textured protein
yeast extract
yeast food or nutrient
autolyzed yeast

This list is of ingredients that often contain MSG:

malted barley (flavor)
barley malt
malt extract or flavoring
caramel flavoring (coloring)
flavors, flavoring
reaction flavors
natural chicken, beef, or pork flavorings or seasonings
soy sauce or extract
soy protein
soy protein isolate or concentrate
flowing agents
modified food starch
rice syrup or brown rice syrup
lipolyzed butter fat
low or non-fat items
corn syrup and corn syrup solids
citric acid (when processed from corn)
milk powder
dry milk solids
whey protein
products that are protein-fortified
protease and protease enzymes
wheat, rice, or oat protein
dough conditioners
enyme-modified products
ultra-pasteurized products
protein-fortified milk
whey protein isolate or concentrate
some fermented products

So as you can see, MSG, in some form, is in nearly everything you buy ready-made in the store! (And when I say ready-made, I am including pre-made cream of chicken, mushroom, celery, etc soup, Ragu sauce, etc...) As long as you cook homemade, completely from scratch, you'll stay pretty safe. If you want to see just how impossible it is to buy good food in the store, just go down the aisles and pick up random items and read the ingredients. It's quite a revelation!

Monosodium glutamate is impossible to avoid, if you aren't extremely careful in what you buy. What about wouldn't think MSG wouyld be a problem there, would you? "Powdered skim milk is added to the most popular varieties of commercial milk - one-percent and two-percent milk. Commercial dehydration methods oxidize cholesteral in powdered milk, rendereing it harmful to the arteries. High temperature drying also creates large quantities of cross-linked proteins and nitrate compounds, which are potent carcinogens, as well as free glutamic acid, which is toxic to the nervous system." ** I would never advocate buying milk from the store, in any case, and that lends even more credence to my conviction, were that possible! But milk is an entirely different subject, and one that I could write on for quite some time!

Here are just a few of the interesting facts I found in the very short time that I was able to delve a little deeper into the MSG controversy.

"Monosodium glutamate is an additive that has been soundly condemned by knowledgeable researchers--for good reason. Manufactured glutamate is a neurotoxic substance that causes many adverse reactions. In sensitive individuals these can manifest as dizziness, violent diarrhea and even anaphylactic shock. Longer term and more insidious consequences of MSG ingestion include Parkinson's and Alzheimer's in adults and neurological damage in children. Animal studies have linked MSG with brain lesions, retinal degeneration and obesity."***

"Recently a growth enhancer called Auxigro has been approved as a spray for crops like apples and beans. It contains 30% MSG!"***

"What if someone were to tell you that a chemical added to food could cause brain damage in your children, and that this chemical could effect how your children's nervous system formed during developmental years so that in later years they may have learning or emotional difficulties? What if there was scientific evidence that these chemicals could damage a critical part of the brain known to control hormones to that later in life your child might have endocrine problems? How would you feel?
Suppose evidence was presented to you strongly suggesting that the artificial sweetener in you diet soft drink may cause brain tumors to develop, and the number of brain tumors reported since the widespread introduction of this artificial sweetener has risen dramatically? Would that affect your decision to drink these products and especially to allow your children to drink them? What if you could be shown overwhelming evidence that one of the main ingredients in this sweetener (aspartame) could cause the same brain lesions as MSG? Would that affect your buying decisions?
And finally, what if it could be demonstrated that all of these types of chemicals (called excitotoxins) could possibly aggravate or even precipitate many of the neurodegenerative brain diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, ALS and Alzheimer's disease? Would you be concerned if you knew that these excitotoxin food additives are a particular risk if you have ever had a stroke, brain injury, brain tumor, seizure or have suffered from hypertension, diabetes, meningitis or viral encephalitis?
I would think that all of us would be more that just concerned to learn that well-known powerful brain toxins were being added to our food and drink to boost sales. We would be especiallu upset to learn that these additives have no other purpose that to enhance the taste of the food and the sweetness of various diet products.
You would also be upset to learn that many of these brain lesions in your children are irreversible and can follow a single exposure of a sufficient concentration. And I would bet that you would be incredulous to learn that the food industry disguises many of these "excitotoxin additives" so that they will not be recognized. In fact, many foods that are labeled "No MSG" not only contain MSG but also contain other excitotoxins of equal potency."**

"In all of these experiments, immature animals were found to be much more vulnerable to the toxic effects of MSG that were older animals. This was true in all animals species tested.
Yet, food manufactures continue to add tons of this excitotoxin additive to foods of all kinds, including baby foods. Even the government's health watchdog agency, the Food and Drug Administration, refused to take action. Dr. Olney, one of the leading researchers in the area, felt compelled to do something to protect unsuspecting mother and their infants from danger. First, he informed the FDA of the real danger to human infants and encouraged them to take action. But they refused. His only recourse was to go public with what he knew to be true--that MSG was a dangerous compound that should not be added to infant foods. It was only after this testimony before a Congressional committee that the food manufactures agrees to remove MSG from baby foods. But did they really?
Instead of adding pure MSG, they added a substance known as hydrolyzed vegetable protein that contains three known excitotoxins and has added MSG...this substance is even more dangerous that MSG. They continued this practice for seven more years, and there is evidence that excitotoxins are still added to baby foods today. Usually these are in the form of caseinate, [factory-made] beef or chicken broth, or flavoring."**

"The evidence points to MSG sensitivity of epidemic proportions among the general population. But for most people the symptoms are vague: depression, headache, mild nausea, pressure around the eyes, tingling of the face, behavioral disturbances in children and mood swings, accentuating those already present in adolescents and also in adults. . . Recently, we have witnessed important changes in personal habits. Families eat together less often. When they do sit down for a family meal, it often consists of convenience foods, sich as fried chicken, frozen dinners, canned soups, vegetables in prepared sauces and prepared salad mixes, all of which usually contain MSG. When you further consider that monosodium glutamate is an ingredient of seasoning salts, bouillon, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, meat tenderizers, most prepared spaghetti sauces, most sausages, some bacons, and even such ethnic foods as gefilte fish and matzo balls, it becomes quite evident that the level of MSG in any family meal may be quite high . . . MSG is a standard ingredient in most canned soups, soy sauces, bouillon cubes, soup stocks and frozen dinners. It is difficult to avoid even in the finest of restaurants . . . even the cigaratte smoker may get additional MSG since tobacco leaves have been cured with with MSG for smell and flavor enhancement."****

"Milk-based commercial formulas are bad enough, but formula based on soy protein should never have been brought to market. This list of toxins in soy is a long one: phytic acid, which blocks absorption of minerals, especially zinc; protease inhibitors which block the digestion of protein; and high levels of aluminum, flouride, MSG and manganese, all of which can have adverse effects on the brain and nervous system.
But it is the phytoestrogens or isoflavones in soy that give the most cause for concern. These compounds not only depress thyroid function, they also can have profound hormonal effects, especially at the levels to which the soy-fed infant is exposed. A recent study of infants fed soy formula found that they had concentrations of estrogen compounds at levels 13,000 to 22,000 times higher that infants on milk-based formula or breast-milk. Infant boys go through a "testosterone tide" during the first six months of their lives, during which they have testosterone levels nearly equal to those of mature men. This early surge of male hormones programs the reproductive system, brain and other organs to take on male characteristics at puberty. Researchers are now wondering whether the feeding of estrogen-rich soy formula to infant boys interferes with this process and is a partial explanation the increase in learning disabilities and maturation problems in boys. . . . Anecdotal reports of other adverse effects include extreme emotional behavior, learning difficulties, immune system problems, irritable bowel syndrome, and depression." ***
(He also mentions the effects on girls, which is the opposite of boys...the hormones make them develop faster.)

There is enough information in just those few quotes to leave you with a lot to think on for a while. While I've never yet read any evidence supporting this idea, it is my theory that the feeding of all of the fake "food" products, and especially the soy infant formula, has a LOT to do with the rise of Sodomy these days. The soy messes with hormones and alters the way the babies develop, thus disrupting the natural feelings they have towards other people. It's not the way they were born, as so many of the gay people claim, but rather, the way they were raised, and what they were fed when they were young. What if that really were the case, and you really do alter the entire life of a person by taking charge of what they eat??? That is a serious responsibility that is placed upon parents. I would be very interested in the results of a study showing what gay people were fed when they were young. (I am in no way advocating their choices in life, or saying that food is the deciding factor in such choices, or that they have no control over their choices...just something I think is interesting.)

We have a responsibility to take care of ourselves. Our health and well-being is our God-given responsibility...not some doctor's. When did Americans forfiet their responsibility to the government, and begin trusting some federation (FDA) to make decisions about what is and isn't good for them??? We need to research and learn and know enough about these mystery ingredients to know why we shouldn't pollute our bodies with this so-called "food." Why is eating what we know is bad for us any less wrong than doing things, and going places, that we know are wrong? If we avoid liquor stores for the reason of abstaining from the appearance of evil, should we eat McDonald's? Just something to think about...and don't think that I'm saying that we don't go to McDonald's or anything like that. We haven't gotten to that point...yet. (By the way, there is not one single thing on the McDonald's menu that is good for you. Not one.)

People should educate themselves, not only for themselves, but for their families, their children. Young, unmarried people should know this stuff well in advance, before they marry and have children. Did you know that the way you eat has a direct impact on your fertility? That what you eat, and what your parents ate when you were in utero will effect your children's health for the rest of their lives? You have to learn this stuff NOW! If you're already a parent, educate yourself now, so that your children will have the benefit of a healthy lifestyle, free of chemical additives and the adverse effects of such. Once you give children a taste for junk, it's a hard habit to break. Learn and teach now.

*These lists come from Take Control of Your Health, Dr. Joseph Mercola
**Taken from Excitotoxins: The Taste That Kills, Richard L. Blaylock, MD
***Taken from Nourishing Traditions, Sally Fallon
****Taken from In Bad Taste: The MSG Syndrome, George R. Schwartz, MD


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