The Effects of MSG and Why It Should Not Be Used in Confinement Meal Preparation
Monosodium glutamate, or more commonly known as MSG, is a flavour enhancer used widely in the preparation of food. It is said that any food, with MSG, added can taste like it was prepared by an award-winning chef. Though the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified MSG as a generally safe ingredient in food preparation, there have been numerous debates on whether it is a healthy choice to consume MSG on a daily basis.
While it does give your meals an extra “kick”, is it really beneficial for your health? Other than the taste department, is MSG really worth putting into your foods? This article will enlighten you on the effects of MSG and why it should not be used in your confinement meal preparation.
Effects of MSG
The confinement period after a woman delivers is said to be a time of recuperating and replenishing the body. Which is why you should take extra care in ensuring that the food you consume is packed with all the essential vitamins and nutrients needed to boost your recovery! Over the years, researches have shown that the disadvantages of consuming MSG outweigh its advantages. Reports have shown that long-term or excessive consumption of MSG could lead to serious health issues such as adrenal gland malfunction, high blood pressure, excessive weight gain, stroke and other health problems
Adrenal Gland Malfunction
A study shows that overconsumption of MSG in restaurants could result in a complex of symptoms termed ‘Chinese restaurant syndrome’. This syndrome includes numbness, weakness, flushing, sweating, dizziness, and headaches. Additionally, there are a number of cases and studies that have proven the harm of having excessive MSG on various human organs.
Your liver will be exposed to neurotoxic effects on the cerebellum steatohepatitis, and certain preneoplastic changes. To put it simply, overuse of MSG would harm your liver permanently. Plus, prolonged use of MSG could also bring damage to the pancreatic structure of your kidney. This includes both of your exocrine and endocrine cells with varying degrees of damage to the cell composition of your kidney too.
You might want to cut down on your MSG intakes now, after all, it might hinder your progress for a smoother postpartum recovery. Make use of your confinement as the time to start having a healthy eating habit!
Excessive Weight Gain
While MSG makes your food tastes better, it is also liable to the risks of making you gain extra kilos as well. How so, you may ask. MSG may have a correlation with the hormone leptin. This hormone is responsible for regulating your hunger and metabolism as well. Studies showed that the consumption of MSG may induce resistance towards leptin.
Therefore, even if you consumed lesser calories in your daily food intakes but ate more MSG, you are bound to gain more weight because your body is unable to properly process the energy it receives from the food. Hence, try to cut down or avoid MSG during pregnancy altogether from your meals. Preventing yourself from being overweight during pregnancy is key to a smoother postpartum recovery.
There are a plethora of healthy options online and on the market as well. Plus, the ingredients for healthy confinement recipes are usually easily accessible and they are quite sensibly priced as well. Who knows? You might find one that you will love!
High Blood Pressure
Additionally, high blood pressure might also be derived as one of the effects of MSG. The sodium contained in MSG is one of the ingredients that can cause your blood pressure to rise above its normal levels. Moreover, gaining weight can also increase your risk of having high blood pressure and since MSG is the culprit behind your excessive weight gain, it’s not hard to see why the ingredient is linked to this condition.
How does MSG cause your blood pressure to rise? When you consume excessive MSG, your body will contain water to “wash away” the excessive salt. For certain groups of people, the excess water contained in the body would place stress on your heart and blood vessels.
This will eventually cause your blood pressure to rise. In order to treat this, consume less salt or avoid them altogether. A study by the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology advises that you should not consume MSG during breastfeeding .
MSG should also be avoided by infants, children, women of childbearing age, and individuals with affective disorders. You can opt for sodium-free herbs or MSG-free foods to suit your confinement
You may want to read up on the types of food that may contain MSG or create MSG during processing. Restaurants may use MSG in their food preparation but you can always request that no MSG be added to your meal. Additionally, if you find a trusted restaurant or eatery which you know for sure, does not use MSG in their food preparation, that is one place to stick to when having your meals outside.
In conclusion, prevention is always better than cure. Although we can’t guarantee the best way to avoid MSG, a few useful tips would be to avoid processed food.
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