MSG is short for monosodium glutamate. It is a food additive that is commonly used in condiments such as soy sauce and is also a constant flavoring ingredient in Chinese dishes.
The term umami is a Japanese loanword that roughly means “savory” and is the word used to describe the taste of MSG or any dish that is laden with this distinct flavor. The taste is ascribed to the glutamate component of this food additive. The tongue actually has receptors for this specific compound which differentiates umami from the other basic tastes.
In the early years of its production MSG was made by hydrolyzing wheat gluten. A second method used afterwards was direct synthesis of MSG component substances through the use of acrylonitrile, a chemical used in the fiber industry. Today the food additive is made through bacterial fermentation. The glutamate is filtered from the amino acids secreted by the bacteria and then sodium is added at a later stage.
The Superhuman Food Pyramid recommends that you avoid including MSG in your diet. Despite its tempting flavor, there are certain health risks that MSG components can present.
Read on to know about the negative effects of MSG and why it won’t help you Become Superhuman. Continue reading