// MSG
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JustOne
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MSG
« on: Jul 02, 2008 12:59 PM »


Salaam.

Okay so this ingredient was a big fat no in our family growing up.  Along with meat tenderizers, food coloring (even candy with certain colors was completely banned), that aluminum foil thing that desis put on their kheer, any kind of pre-made shan masalas, etc etc.  Oh yeah... and we rarely ate any chicken that wasn't organic.

To the extent that my dad would give lectures to restaurant managers about MSG-use in their cooking.  It was slightly embarrassing, because no one but us seemed to have a problem with it.  And, my mom was just such an excellent cook that she could make things without things to enhance the taste.

Anyhoo... so I got married a little while ago.  And we eat out 2x a week (either at someone's place or at a restaurant).   And I have started having SEVERE migraines.  To the extent that it doesn't get better until I throw up and sleep for a few hours.  I was even admitted to the hospital in April because the vomiting wouldn't stop until they gave me an injection. 

A doctor friend of mine told me that it must be something I've introduced into my diet since I got married.  Living in Pakistan -- we ate EVERYTHING fresh.  We even grew our own vegetables and herbs.  It was totally farm-to-mouth. 

Soooo...recently I got rid of all the shan masalas that I thought would save me 100 hours.  I threw out the meat tenderizer that my husband used for his bbqing.  I chucked out the package of "chinese salt" that he used for his stir-fry.  I even force him to take me to an open market (which is wayyyy far from our house... and where women are rarely seen).

My headaches have gotten much better (and I've picked up the annoying habit my dad had -- I even asked one of my hosts if she used chinese salt in her cooking Sad )

The problem is... my husband totally disagrees.  He's very nice about eating my very bland food.  And I keep a handful of chopped green chillies for him to chew on.  And if I ever DO make anything Shan, I make myself a salad, because I just cannot stomach that stuff.  He thinks it's totally in my head.  He recently pulled out an FDA statement on MSG.  He also pointed me to an entire generation raised on preservatives who are fine and healthy.  He totally has a point.  And the 2 doctors we've seen all kinda agree with him.

We joke about it all the time -- but it's kinda not so funny.

Does anyone else experience what I do?

Wasalaam.
Fozia
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« Reply #1 on: Jul 02, 2008 01:48 PM »

salam

Yep MSG and aspartame (the sweetner) are strictly migrane city for me.  My body will not tolerate them. I dont give them to my girls either along with anything with tartrazine in it and all the other colourings that make food go red or bright yellow (basically the colours all children want to eat), it makes my nephew rilllllyyy hyper he practically bounces off the walls after ingesting anything with the above in it.

Having said that my cooking is never bland you'll eventually figure out how to cook with with natural ingredients you have to enhance your food. After all aren't additives and food enhancers meant to taste like your own cooking except for people who dont know how?

MSG is not recommended for pregnant women, you can go to a chinese restaraunt and ask for MSG free food!!!


Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #2 on: Jul 02, 2008 02:04 PM »

Assalamo elikuim
Chinese salt is a big no no (although it tastes good Sad ). Also for meat tenderizer you can use raw papaya (I  usually make a paste of it in blender and freeze it in ice tray. That way whenever you need you can add cube of it .) It tastes much better than meat tenderizer- you can add it to ground beef to give a flavour of daam ka qeema( sort of like bbq ground beef).
Fresh green chillies are much healthier than red chillies, also finely sliced onions with lemon juice and chopped mint will enhance the flavour of any food Smiley

Wasalam
tq
JustOne
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« Reply #3 on: Jul 02, 2008 03:03 PM »

yeah i got the papaya...my mom helped me with that Smiley  good idea with the ice tray.  how long can you keep it in the freezer before it "expires"?

the thing is... i live in saudi arabia.  when i ask for msg-free food everyone rolls their eyes.  and i'm so sure they say "ok" and then add it in anyway.  it's mostly just the desi and chinese places that like to use it.

omg! aspartame!  yessss... i've always gotten the same headache with that too.  along with dried apricots -- but that's because of the sulphite.
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« Reply #4 on: Jul 02, 2008 06:20 PM »

as salaamu alaykum,

How bad is MSG really, and what exactly is it?  A lot of the Nestle and Maggi brand ready-made soups, sauces, chicken stock etc I've come across in the Middle East have it.
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« Reply #5 on: Jul 02, 2008 06:41 PM »

salam

msg is monosodium glutamate.  it is the sodium salt of the amino acid  glutamate. it is a small molecule.

do a search on wikipedia, it goes by other names too.

glutamate acts as a  neurotransmittor in the body.  Glutamate binds to a protein on the cell surface and this binding induces many events inside the cell , especially in nerve cells.   It might be why some people can't tolerate MSG in food.

if you know it bothers you, simply remove it from your diet.  Whether other people like this or not, is their problem.  It might take a while, but with time your husband will eventually get used to food without MSG. 

take care
wassalam
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