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Battling the MSG Myth » Archive » Help! I Have a Question » Fish « Previous Next »

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MEMorrisNJ
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2000 - 3:17 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I went to the supermarket fish department today (Kings in Morristown, New Jersey) to buy fish for my family. (I personally won’t eat fish anymore --- I still don’t know if I am reacting to the sulfites, phosphates, MSG, and/or what they feed farmed fish or something else. Within 1 hour, I have severe d. that usually continues for 24 hours – I react to fish the most severely out of any food. Someday, I’ll figure out why but I don’t feel like “experimenting” for quite sometime --- my reactions are that bad)
Anyway, I was about to take some turbot fillet from the fishman until he mentioned that the turbot may have a stronger smell than usual. He explained that the smell is from a spray called “BRIE” which is SPRAYED ON THE FISH when it is filleted at the docks to keep it fresh. He could not explain if this was the same brie as in brie cheese. (I returned the fish to him, thanked him profusely for sharing that info with me, and tried to lecture him a bit about additives!)

I intend to write to Kings to complain that the fish should be labelled with whatever they are using and to ask for more details. In the meantime, does anyone have any further information on this type of spray? How is it spelled? Is it really “brie”? What is in it?
Frank
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2000 - 6:44 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Maybe you are allergic to seafood, like my mother.
She cannot tolerate any kind of seafood.

Also, remember that some fish species are toxic at some times of the year. Where I live (PR) there are about 3 or 4 species that are toxic depending on the time of the year, so if you buy from an inexperienced fisherman, like happened to my father like 10 years ago, you will end up in the hospital like we did. And I can tell you this is worse than any MSG reaction, and will last a lot longer, for me it was 3 months of suffering :)
Gerry Bush
Posted on Saturday, December 09, 2000 - 10:05 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

MEMorrisNJ- Remember from the NoMSG site before it crashed I started a whole section on seafood. Yes they are spraying or bathing the fresh fish, including shellfish at the docks with the following solutions: Sodium Tripolyphosphate, sodium phosphate and/or Sodium Lactate.
Unfortunately I too react severely to these chemicals as do you. My reactions are especially severe and mimic my typical MSG reaction: Skin rashes, blisters, swelling of eyes, tongue and gums, and also the d.
Beware of your supermarket fresh fish section as the fish and shellfish are no longer safe!
Tom Fernstrom
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2000 - 5:39 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Frank,

Does PR stand for Puerto Rico? If so, I could use the knowledge of what fish to avoid and when. I will be renting a Villa in Vieques over the Holidays and will be purchasing groceries locally. Any information about what to avoid either regarding the fish or other local products would be helpful.

Tom
Frank
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2000 - 6:23 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Tom, PR stands for Puerto Rico

Well, if you eat from a well known restaurant you won't have any problems, but if you plan to go fishing yourself or buy fish at the beaches, then be sure to ask the name of the fish they are selling you. Picua, Jurel and Medregal are the fishes to avoid, altough any experienced local fisherman knows that. Also, here in PR we like to use Sazon (Accent) too much, not me, but almost eveybody uses it, so don't forget to ask if they put it in the food before you buy, or you will get a big reaction. They use it for the beans, for the rice to give it a yellowish color and in soups too, altough most people use "cubitos" for the soup, but it is the same, the first ingredient is MSG. So, it is better to ask before you eat.
If you avoid those 2 things you'll be ok.
If not, then it will be a trip to the hospital, depending on your sensitivity. And I can tell you by experience, that nobody want to be in a hospital in PR :) You tell that you are MSG sensitive to any doctor and they will think you are allergic to it and the only remedy will be Benadryl. Also, it will be a long wait in the waiting room while they call you :)

Also, most local candies here are MSG free, if they are natural, like Papaya candy or Coconut candy, or "Guayaba" candy. And, I haven't seen real butter here in years so if you buy a sandwich you will get Margarine or Mayonaise, of which Margarine has a lot more MSG (from the soy); I react to Margarine but not to the Mayonaise, so ask for Mayonaise instead of margarine or ask to omit it. And since you said you are renting a Villa, I recommend you cook your own food, it'll be a lot better and safer, and leave the restaurants for dinner only. You can find a wide variety of vegetables and fruits at out local supermarkets.

Anyway, I know you will enjoy the island a lot if you avoid MSG. And if you have the time, I recommend a visit to "El Yunque".
MEMorrisNJ
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2000 - 7:54 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thank you all for the response to my questions re fish. Very useful! Tom - I'll be looking forward to hearing how your food experience went in PR! Hope it is a very good one.
Carol H
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2000 - 5:08 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

MEMorris,

For fish at home, you might want to try Trader Joes in Westwood. They have a wide selection of frozen fish that you may have better luck with.
MEMorrisNJ
Posted on Sunday, December 10, 2000 - 6:08 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Carol - Thanks! I just heard that there is a new Trader Joe's in Florham Park, NJ!
Gerry Bush
Posted on Monday, December 11, 2000 - 10:11 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

And their frozen shrimp is free of all chemicals! Thank God for Trader Joe's.
vrogers
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 6:54 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Is tuna typically safe? I am finding that I am beginning to reat to mor things and am having trouble finding anything that I can still eat. I have never had tuna before but read on a post that as long as the only ingredients are tuna, water, and salt it should be ok. What can I do with the canned tuna to make it taste good? Thanks
Valerie
Judy T
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 7:27 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Tuna is fine. It's what they add that makes it dangerous. You'll read vegetable broth or hydrolyzed vegetable or plant protein. StarKist has a tuna fillet in spring water or in olive oil. It has precisely the same calories, sodium and proteins. What to add? Some could add homemade mayo, or a smidgen of Best Foods probably, along with a bit of pickle relish and some chopped black olives. I eat it plain on rice cakes and just happy to be able to do that.
Carol H
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 9:16 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I have found very good tuna from Trader Joes. It's yellowfin tuna in olive oil. It's very tasty. I add Spectrum brand canola mayonnaise. My boyfriend can eat this without getting an asthma attack.
M-Y
Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 3:25 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I make tuna burgers using Starkist Filet in Olive Oil. 1 can of tuna, 1 small chopped onion and a beaten egg. I cook it just like Salmon Cakes. Fried in a little olive oil until nicely brown or I use a oven proof skillet and cook it in the oven while I am baking things to go with it. Yum....
Connie
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 6:02 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I enjoy light tuna with "Old Bay" seasoning (McCormick) or white tuna with dill weed, salt and pepper. A lunch favorite is to add chopped cucumber, tomatoes and dollop on plain yogert or sour cream all rolled into a tortilla shell.
Deb A.
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 12:01 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I sprinkle a piece of bread with olive oil, then pile on Tree of Life Tuna, sweet onions, sliced avacado, tomatoes and lettuce(opt.). Then I season with salt, pepper, oregano, basil, and a dash of fresh leomon juice. I eat it with a fork as an open-faced sandwich. It's a great salad if you omit the bread.
Roy Piwovar
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 8:51 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I used to react to "Old Bay" seasoning, so haven't risked it in years. They may have since changed the formula and made it safe, but here are some substitutions anyway:

http://www.sneakykitchen.com/Recipes/old_bay.htm
Connie
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 6:56 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Roy,

I know for a fact that "Old Bay" has had MSG in it in the past. I'm pretty sensitive to MSG & company, and can say with assurance that it does not cause any reactions for me...and we use a lot of it on our steamed crabs in the summer and I don't have a problem. Really miss them right about now because I can't eat any of the prepackaged crabmeat because of the brine they use.
MEMorrisNJ
Posted on Friday, September 21, 2001 - 6:27 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

A must read on farmed fish: http://www.mercola.com/2001/sep/12/salmon.htm (2nd time I am attempting to post this!)
Gerry Bush
Posted on Friday, September 21, 2001 - 10:54 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thanks MEMorrisNJ! Now there goes my salmon too. How can we tell if the salmon is wild or farm raised? Does anyone know?
MEMorrisNJ
Posted on Saturday, September 22, 2001 - 7:03 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

And to add to Gerry's question, how can we trust what we are told either by the seller directly or what we see on labels? Example: Trader Joe's sells incredibly economic salmon in their freezer section that is labelled as "wild". How do we really know that it is truly wild?
MEMorrisNJ
Posted on Saturday, September 22, 2001 - 7:16 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

P.S. Trader Joe’s web site refers to the fish they sell at: http://www.traderjoes.com/tj/products/brochures/fish.stm
They state they buy only fish and shellfish which have not been treated with sulfites or sodium tripolyphosphate. Has anyone had reactions from their fish? They only mention fish caught at sea with no mention of farmed fish but I’d like more reassurance they do not carry farmed fish.

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