Friday, March 26, 2010

Hidden Names of MSG

Have you gone through your pantry and cleaned out all the products that contained MSG (monosodium glutamate) and thought to yourself, "I'm finally on the right track to getting healthy?"  Well, that is a GREAT start, but what you DON'T know is that MSG comes in MANY different forms and a TON of different NAMES! 

What is MSG?
MSG is a food enhancer.  If you go to your local Asian market you will find it in the spice aisle!  It makes food taste better because it is an EXCITOTOXIN. This is the process where your brain cells are OVER-ACTIVATED! Glutamate is a prime example of an excitotoxin in the brain. Most MSG is now made from BACTERIAL FERMENTATION--YUCK! 

Are there any side effects? 
MSG has been linked to headaches, eye problems, depression, disorientation, fatigue, and weight gain.

Excitoticity has been "involved in spinal cord injuries, stroke, traumatic brain injury, neurodegenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease, alcoholism, and Huntington's disease. Other common conditions that cause excessive glutamate concentrations around neurons are hypoglycemia and status epilepticus (Excitotoxcity in Wikipedia).

Marketing Deception
MSG comes in MANY different forms and under other names.  If you want to completely eliminate MSG from your diet make sure you AVOID the following ingredients as well:

 Helpful hints
If all of MSG's alias' are giving you anxiety, then I suggest doing a few of the following until you get familiar with all of the names and terminology:

  1. Print out the MSG  Cheat Sheet and study it
  2. Bring the Cheat Sheet to the grocery store when you go shopping
  3. Buy all-natural, whole foods and LIMIT any packaged foods esp the following:
    1. Dressings
    2. Bouillon cubes
    3. Asian store sauces
    4. Packaged spices and dips
    5. Flavored chips
    6. Stocks and Broths
  4. Key words to AVOID:  
    1. Hydrolyzed
    2. Autolyzed
    3. Yeast Extracts
    4. Protein Extracts
    5. Caseinates!
Link for More information on MSG

    Friday, March 12, 2010

    High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)

    Have you ever looked around and wondered why we have so many more cancer patients, children allergies, diabetics, obese children and adults etc...?  I mean, I can't even bring in homemade cookies to my Sunday School class because so many kids have food allergies.  That was never the case 20 years ago!  I have come to realize that WE ARE WHAT WE EAT!

    American Diet

    First, let's look at the average American diet.  One-third of Americans get their daily caloric intake from junk foods. Over 7% of our calories are from soft drinks (Natural News) and up to 10% for children and teenagers (NY Times 2/15/10). Americans eat 19% MORE sugar than we did in 1970.  Men are consuming 187 more calories each day and women 335 calories more than we did 25 years ago (Dr. Mercola).  All of these statistics make you realize why 30% of Americans are OBESE and that's not even counting the percentage that are just OVERWEIGHT

    These statistics are astonishing, but more than that, we aren't just consuming table sugar like we did 25 years ago.  We are now consuming a whooping 141 pounds of sugar per person per year, and 63 pounds of that is High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). If you look on the back of every label in your home you will see HFCS in almost every packaged item.  I even discovered it in my canned tomatoes!!!


    The biggest problem with HFCS is the fact that it is 20% sweeter than regular table sugar.  Sugar is addictive, but HFCS is even MORE addictive because it is a processed fructose.  Fructose is a derivative of sucrose and is related to health problems because of its similarity to alcohol within the human digestive tract.  The majority of fructose is converted into FAT instead of being digested.  Fructose is also related to metabolic syndrome.

    Table sugar is 50% sucrose and 50% fructose, while HFCS is 42% sucrose and 55% fructose!

    Since fructose occurs naturally in fruits, vegetables, and honey it is healthy and fine to consume it in its natural state; however, even natural fructose needs to be LIMITED and consumed in MODERATION! The health benefits of fruits and vegetables outweighs the negative metabolic affect of the fructose; however, HFCS has NO health benefits, therefore, it has nothing to outweigh the metabolic affects on your digestive tract. 

    Fructose is also one of the main ingredients in AGAVE NECTAR.  We have heard so many ads saying how healthy agave nectar is and how "natural" it is.  Well, I hate to break the bad news, but agave nectar is NOT NATURAL, even if you buy the organic brands.  To get agave nectar they PROCESS the sap from the agave plant which kills all of the healthy benefits of the agave plant. Not to mention, agave nectar is extremely high in fructose.  Although this is the case, I do still consume agave nectar because it tastes so great in my teas, oatmeal, and recipes, but I do so in moderation!


    HFCS should be cut out of your diets completely if you ever want to lose weight and stop craving all of those granola bars, cereals, canned tomatoes, sauces, and MORE!  Natural FRUCTOSE should be limited, so don't go thinking that an all fruit diet is healthy! The best fruits to eat are all berries, Granny Smith Apples, apricots, nectarines, cantaloupes and peaches.  

    So what is the best way to CUT FAT off your body and get that summer body you have always WANTED????? Limit natural fructose AND cut HFCS out of your diet COMPLETELY.  Pair that with a 3 day a week or more workout routine and you will be BEACH READY in no time!