Food Intolerance (MSG and Salicylates)
Food Intolerance: Why the Food We Eat Might Be Killing Us, Part 3
Food Intolerance profoundly affects people. My goal in this series is to educate you and arm you with the tools to live a happier, more healthy life. Read Part 1 and Part 2. Make sure you click on the informational links and read the facts about food intolerance.
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Research On Food Intolerance With New Info
There are amazing books written now with new information, as studies and research are constantly being done and new facts are being discovered. I’m sharing just a few great books at the bottom of these posts. Get your hands on one or more of them. There are some awesome Factsheets and links, as well! Your health and your family’s may greatly benefit.
As much as I thought I knew about this subject, I was amazed to learn how many other conditions are now related to these symptoms and food intolerance. For instance, the symptoms of Leaky gut, IBS, Meniere’s and other conditions have now been found to be related to Salicylate intolerance.
Something you are suffering from could be related, and this connection may have never occurred to you! Light-bulb moment. Let me know if you found some piece of helpful information through these posts.
Food Intolerance and The Bucket Theory
One difference between an allergy and an intolerance or sensitivity is that an allergy will produce immediate symptoms, where a sensitivity may produce symptoms 1-2 days (or more) later. I have come to expect my worst symptoms after 48 hours.
Also, an allergy will produce symptoms every time, whereas a sensitivity may or may not produce symptoms, and the severity of symptoms may differ from one time to another. This makes it exceedingly challenging. It is like playing Russian Roulette.
Because you got away with eating that food last time, and you love that food(!) you eat it again, and this time you suffer extreme symptoms. Over the years I have learned to manage my worst Food Intolerance symptoms.
Food Intolerance and An Elimination Diet
First, through an elimination diet, I found trigger foods.
- green peppers
- apple cider vinegar
Isn’t that an unusual list? All are thought to be healthy foods! But, I saw relief from the blistered lips immediately, when I stopped eating these foods. Occasionally, my lips would still swell. (I wasn’t going to stop taking communion!)
*Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or medical expert; these are just my experiences, and opinions, and they may or may not be helpful to you. Always consult a doctor if you have any serious concerns about your health. I am not a trained dietitian, nutritionist, chef, or medical professional. I am linking to posts from a Registered Dietitian, Deborah Hanyon, whose information, as I have read it, and talked with her, corroborates my experience and conclusions. Please read it, if you are interested in a more scientific explanation for what I will be sharing with you, but know that the information on this blog is based on facts, research, and personal experiences. This information is not intended to diagnose, prevent, treat or cure any disease. Never dismiss any advice your health physician gives. The author shall in no event be held liable for any loss or other damages including, but not limited to, special, incidental, consequential, or any other damages.
I learned of The Bucket Theory, which applies to my experience with Food Intolerance. Let me give you an analogy. Starting with an empty bucket, one drop of water–eating a food with Salicylates–will not cause the bucket to overflow–in other words, it will produce no symptoms.
When the bucket becomes more and more full of water, even one drop will cause it to overflow. In other words, eating a bite of food with Salicylates in it, will produce many (and sometimes severe) symptoms. When the contents of the bucket are reduced again, symptoms subside, but then re-occur when the bucket becomes full again.
Completely removing certain foods from my diet for awhile (berries, for instance, and apple cider vinegar and peppers), plus greatly reducing my intake of tomatoes, (we used to eat a lot of Italian food) emptied the bucket.
Now, I am able to occasionally eat berries without major incident. Sometimes, I admit, I choose to suffer mild to moderate symptoms, because I love fresh berries! Food Intolerance is a tricky business to deal with.
Food Intolerance Causes A Change In Lifestyle
You need to find foods you can eat, and substitutions you like, because otherwise you will feel so restricted, it will be difficult to continue eating the way you should. This is especially critical, if you have a child, or you are an adult, who needs to be on a restricted diet because of behavioral symptoms resulting from food intolerance.
One thing caused more trouble and behavioral symptoms, affecting my nervous system, than all the rest, and became Enemy Number 1 for me:
Mono Sodium Glutamate (MSG)
The Ugly Stepsisters of Food Intolerance: MSG and Salicylate Intolerance
A surprise for many about food intolerance is that MSG is linked to Salicylates. MSG is something which I, and many others, cannot tolerate well at all. It is a well-known fact that some people cannot tolerate it. However, studies indicate that ALL people will have some symptoms if the dosage of MSG is high enough. What is the real kicker is that Salicylates, which are present in fruits and vegetables and other healthy foods, are related to MSG!
My symptoms from MSG include migraine-like headaches, severe mood swings, depression, and irritability, just to name a few. I can relate to what one mother described in her child as, the “bad and sad” days. These symptoms are not little things. They severely affect a person suffering from them, and their family.
And, yes, this affects children severely! In children, hyperactivity and ADHD symptoms occur.
Disclaimer: I am not a trained dietitian, nutritionist, chef, or medical professional. I am linking to posts from a Registered Dietitian, Deborah Hanyon, whose information, as I have read it, and talked with her, corroborates my experience and conclusions. Please read it, if you are interested in a more scientific explanation for what I will be sharing with you, but know that the information on this blog is based on facts, research, and personal experiences. This information is not intended to diagnose, prevent, treat or cure any disease. Never dismiss any advice your health physician gives. The author shall in no event be held liable for any loss or other damages including, but not limited to, special, incidental, consequential, or any other damages.
There are days, if I am “under the influence,” as I call having eaten something with MSG or Salicylates in it, when I become intolerable to live with, by my family, or myself. Rage, violent mood swings, deep depression and despair are some of the very worst symptoms.
Another symptom that’s difficult to deal with is an intense lack of self-worth.
These are the days when I question, “Why even bother?”
These symptoms make me want to just give up. Not try. I want to crawl in bed and pull the covers over my head. I don’t care if I’m responsible, or kind, or get anything done. (I’m thankful that the Holy Spirit helps me, and I do keep going. But, I may hurt people around me, and suffer greatly on those days.) I don’t always get anything done on the worst days, but, by God’s grace, I persevere.
Food Intolerance Websites
An excellent site which explains symptoms, and the relationship between MSG and Salicylate Intolerance, and gives helpful steps to take if you or a loved one are suffering from any of these symptoms, is: MSG and Salicylate Intolerance.
By the way, remember that the symptoms of Leaky gut, IBS, Meniere’s and other conditions can now be related to Salicylate intolerance, as well.
Food Intolerance: First Steps To Take For Help and Healing
- First, click on the links I have included here and inform yourself. Do research online.
- Second, if you believe you or a family member is suffering from food intolerance–a sensitivity to Salicylates or MSG–begin an elimination diet. Remove from your diet foods containing colors, additives or preservatives to start, and any foods you believe may be triggers for you, based on your research. If you find relief, clear out your pantry, fridge and freezer of foods containing these, as much as you are able. Doing this was immediately helpful to me.
- Third, keep a food diary and symptom chart.
- Fourth, Begin to read labels religiously.
- Fifth, avoid those foods that cause symptoms.
Food Intolerance: Major Culprits Containing MSG
- Aspartame (Nutrisweet)–I drank a lot of diet pop in my major “PMS” days.
- Canned soups and Bouillon
- Most broths, (don’t be fooled by their saying “no msg”)
Other Things To Avoid
- Chinese restaurants
- Most bottled sauces
- Most packaged products
- Anything which says “caramel coloring” or autolyzed yeast extract
- And be very wary of the word “flavorings” or “natural flavors” (my symptoms are present, though milder, when I eat something with “natural flavors”–my research indicates this is a clever way to cover up the presence of MSG in a product).
- Be aware that your children, because their digestive systems are not fully developed, can be even more susceptible to these naturally-occurring chemicals, than you as an adult.
“From all that I have read and learned, I believe that much of what is diagnosed today as ADD and ADHD may be, in reality, salicylate intolerance and sensitivity to MSG.”Wendy Gunn
Food Intolerance and Its Relationship to ADHD and ADD
ADD and ADHD symptoms have been linked to Salicylate intolerance also.
I believe that much of what I thought was PMS, and PMS-related depression in my earlier days, was actually Salicylate intolerance and sensitivity to MSG.
I believe that much of what is diagnosed as ADD and ADHD today is, in reality, Salicylate intolerance and sensitivity to MSG. (Check out the links, and the testimonies on them)
Much of what I thought was PMS in my earlier years, and PMS-related depression, was actually salicylate intolerance and sensitivity to MSG.
Symptoms Vary and How You Are Affected
I encourage you, if you or a family member experience any of these symptoms, to take action! Read, study, and take some first steps.
Because there is a spectrum of sensitivity, and your bucket may be at differing levels, an elimination diet is the most effective tool I can recommend for finding out just which foods are the worst for you, and gaining relief.
Also, you may want to participate in a discussion or forum. Educate yourself. Talk to others who can help you. Do an elimination diet. Don’t give up. You can manage it and you can feel better!
- The News on Food (Good article on MSG)
- The News on Food (Really good article on Salicylates and MSG!)
- The Book “Friendly Food“ (click to go to its page on Amazon.com)
- Food Intolerance Network (Failsafe Newsletters)
- The Failsafe Diet (how to begin a “safe” diet)
If You Think You May Have a Food Intolerance
If you think that you may have a food intolerance, or are experiencing some of these symptoms, please click on at least some of these links, read, gain knowledge, and begin an elimination diet of the worst offenders in your diet. Let me know if this series has helped you, or someone you know!
Just 3 Recommendations out of Many!
Using groundbreaking research, Sue Denegate has shown that learning difficulties, behavioral problems, and minor chronic illness can all be linked to an intolerance to food chemicals. In this hugely expanded compendium, Sue has compiled hundreds of new and improved recipes that are free of harmful chemicals as well as up to the minute information about food intolerance and elimination diets.
The Salicylate Handbook is your complete guide to understanding salicylate sensitivity. This new, revised, edition of The Salicylate Handbook provides an excellent guide to understanding salicylate sensitivity.
Did you know that you may have a poison in your pantry? A substance which can case migraine headaches and balance difficulties; precipitate severe shortness of breath, asthma attacks and heart irregularities; cause disabling arthritis, and even serious depressions? A substance that can induce disruptive behavior problems in your children?
Please share this on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, on your blog and with your friends!
If even one person may be helped, with Food Intolerance symptoms, it will be worth it!
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