MSG & Weight Gain

August 3, 2009
Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Award-winning nutritionist and New York Times bestselling author.

Hold the soy sauce! New research confirms animal studies linking the common additive MSG (monosodium glutamate) with weight gain.

Healthy adults using MSG had higher BMI (body mass index) than those cooking without it. And that’s discounting calorie intake or physical activity.

Found in Chinese cooking as well as many refined foods and processed meats, MSG is an excitotoxin, which may intoxicate nerve cells involved in weight control. For decades, people have complained of headache, flushing or sweating, numbness or tingling around the mouth, chest pain or palpitations, shortness of breath, nausea, or weakness after consuming MSG. More than 25 percent of Americans react negatively to monosodium glutamate. They and anyone with heart disease (since so many symptoms mimic cardiovascular problems) should avoid MSG.

While the FDA reaffirmed this additive’s “safety” in 1995, the agency does require that monosodium glutamate be labeled on food ingredient lists and restaurant menus. Some ingredients always contains MSG: hydrolyzed protein (including plant or vegetable protein), plant protein extract, textured protein, calcium or sodium caseinate, yeast extract, autolyzed yeast, and hydrolyzed oat flour.

For other ways to shake MSG and salt out of your diet, read Get the Salt Out with advice on seasoning your food instead with healthful herbs and spices. And like millions around the world, keep your weight where you want it with The Fat Flush Plan and The Fat Flush Cookbook, which avoids MSG and other dubious food additives.


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Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS, is an award-winning New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty books including The Fat Flush Plan series and her latest book, Radical Metabolism. She’s been rewriting the rules of nutrition for more than 40 years and is internationally recognized as a pioneer in the field of diet, detox and women’s health issues. 

For a FREE daily dose of tips and strategies for maintaining healthy weight, conquering insomnia, and much more…check out my Radical Health Tips.

I’d like to meet and greet you on my Facebook groups, so won’t you check us out at the Radical Metabolism RevolutionFat Flush Nation, or my Inner Circle!


  1. Liz Beck

    Great to see research confirming weight gain with MSG – adding to a long list of other symptoms.

    It is so interesting to see how MSG can be disguised in other food products by other names.
    This is such helpful information.

  2. Ann Louise Gittleman

    Dear Friends:
    I would love to answer each and every single one of your queries, as I have done to the best of my ability, in the past. The popularity of this Blog has grown to the extent that I can no longer provide that service but I am in the planning stages of an Internet – TV show where you can call in and get those questions answered by me in person! Please stay tuned for this exciting development. I first must complete a new manuscript and then will make some exciting announcements. In the interim, may I suggest that if you have questions about products, call UNI KEY at 1-800-888-4353. The folks there are helpful and will direct you accordingly. If you are concerned about a particular health condition, then by all means check out the Testing Kits on my site which will help you to determine underlying causes. Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and interest!


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