Monosodium glutamate (MSG or Ajinamotto or E620) is a chemical additive used by the food industry as a flavour enhancer. An flvour enhancer is a substance which is added to a food to enhance its original taste or flavour. Its potency is extreme.

Glutamic acid was first isolated from wheat gluten and wheat gluten is famous for its allergy. It was first used in the Japanese soups as the essence of the tastiness.

For your information I want to give the following E Numbers:

E620 Glutamic acid
E621 Monosodium glutamate
E622 Monopotassium glutamate
E623 Calcium diglutamate
E624 Monoammonium glutamate
E625 Magnesium diglutamate

Now you know very well from where the wonderful taste of your food comes.

Ajinamotto is used in soups, broths, sauces, gravies and other flavouring and spice blends. Canned and frozen meats, fish, poultry, vegetables, ready-to-eat processed food, salad dressings, ketchup, mayonnaise, sausages, snacks, soy sauce, cheese, ready-made soups, instant noodles etc. have Ajinamotto.

Many in our world are not willing to buy products where Ajinamotto is present. The food industry tries to hide Ajinamotto by using different names. If it is written natural flavourings or hydrolysed protein or spices, then you have to avoid these products. These are the hidden names of Ajinamotto.

The side effects of Ajinamotto are first reported in 1968 after eating from Chinese restaurant. It is called the Chinese Restaurant Syndrome.

The side effects include:

• Numbness
• Burning sensation
• Tingling
• Facial pressure or tightness
• Chest pain
• Headache
• Nausea
• Weakness
• Drowsiness
• Difficulty in breathing
• Rapid heartbeat

The argument is that there are no scientific data for this. But, as a clinical toxicologist I have seen several cases of Ajinamotto allergies from Germans who have eaten in Chinese restaurants.

There is one more point we must think. Our brain needs natural foods and chemicals can make the neurotransmitters to play mad. This may be one of the reasons for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. Ajinamotto can excite brain cells which can cause the death of the cells. Therefore, it is better to avoid this chemical.

Ajinamotto may be found in plant growth enhancers. It is also found in fertilizers and fungicides which have been approved for spraying on growing crops including crops declared as “organic”. What a shame?

The hyperactivity and learning disorders of children also go to the account of Ajinamotto. We have to avoid all the food additives to the children.

I stand near the shop where a village woman asked the shopkeeper, “Give me Ajinamotto for two rupees”. This sh.. has reached everywhere in India…God, they do not know what they do…