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Battling the MSG Myth » Archive » Help! I've Just Made the MSG Connection » Sugar « Previous Next »

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Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 6:21 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

One thing that really surprises me is that people don't seem to take into consideration the dangers of using sugar in healthy recipes. It is such a stimulant not to mention the refining processes. I'll get mine from fruit, even thought they sneak it into every healthy bread, cereal, etc. I AM A SUGAR BUSTER!!!
Deb A.
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 8:00 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Autumn, you are correct about sugar, and I have tried several of my favorite old tried and true recipes using half of what is called for and they are still good. Many of us here are aware of what sugar does to the body, besides the fact that it is a highly processed product(many chemicals are used to produce it, including sulfites). In fact, MSG is produced from beet sugar, molasses and starches, such as corn and tapioca. Our main emphasis is to warn people of the dangers of excitotoxins, since they destroy brain cells, among other things. But your points are well taken. Carol has suggested that we are better off using fructose, and others swear by stevia. What do use to sweeten baked goods, desserts and drinks?
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 8:26 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Is fructose safe? How is it processed? I've been avoiding it for years, but I don't remember why. Sucanaut, which is evaporated cane juice, seems the best substitute for white sugar to me. I still use white sugar, but like Deb A., cut down the amount. I am sensitive to sulfites and tyramine, and even a delicious piece of fruit can have enough fructose? in it to give me a migraine.
Ah! I think I remember that fructose is from fruit starting the fermentation process, creating heat that releases glutamates. Is that right?
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 9:12 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Just found a link for fructose, which is made from corn and similar to high fructose corn syrup.
Deb A.
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 12:57 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Hi Ruth. Yes, I had been told that most of the fructose today is made from corn. Any white crystalline substance that once came from a dark sludge or syrup, has had to go through many processes to get where it is. Corn and beets contain much natural glutamate, so the danger, of course, would be free glutamate residues, along with chemical residues. Some companies claim that most of these are filtered out. But it's doubtful that all of them are. I use cane sugar, honey and sometimes a mix of stevia and sugar...pure out for fillers. I admit to a sweet tooth, and have to use lots of self control!
Deb S
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 1:27 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Thanks for that link, Ruth. That's a fascinating and eye-opening article. I am reminded once again of how we all subconsciously accept as fact what is in actuality the stuff of advertising and public relations campaigns. Fructose is about half of sucrose (refined white sugar) -- the BAD half! Increasing fructose in subjects' diets consistently raised cholesterol and triglyceride levels in studies, whereas studies of the effects of animal fats were inconsistent.

And I like how the FDA spokesperson (in 1995) gave the typical "see-no-evil, hear-no-evil, speak-no-evil" response to the question of whether fructose is a health hazard. Shameful!
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 3:03 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

SUGAR Having gone through two post-partum depressions, I made a link to both caffeine and sugar. Caffeine was the first to go, and I have been sugar-free since about 1976. One of the best books I have come across is SWEET AND SUGARFREE, by Karen E. Barkie. She shows you how to substitute pure fruit, dried fruit, applesauce, juice concentrates - frozen. My husband, a sugar-abuser, loves the recipes. There are fruit frosties, ice cream,puddings, sauces, jams, cakes to cookies, etc. I am now also free of depression for 25 years. She also has a suggested reading page, SWEET AND DANGEROUS BY Peter H. Wyden. I'm sure there are updated versions by both authors, but since my children are grown my books are suffice. I now watch for it in everything from yogurt to ketchup, to hotdogs, to mustard. If there is none available without it, I make my own in small portions and refrigerate it. If I happen to get a piece of bread in a restaurant that has sugar in it, I feel the mood by the next morning. When I see a luscious dessert, I think about the stimulant it will be and the price I will have to pay to boot. It takes a while, because this world is going in the opposite direction; but I refuse to be a pill-popper. My Mom went thru the depression and was a great teacher on back-to-basics. Less is really better, and the more your tastebuds adjust to naturally sweet things, the less you will crave the monster. I am convinced that this industry is killing us and then making a killing on the diet fads to take the pounds off. I am now a grandmother of and 8 and 9 year old, and people say I look like I am in my thirties. Sugar causes wrinkles, eeeeek!!!
Posted on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 10:27 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Anon., are you hypoglycemic? Many people eat sugar moderately and do not experience depression like you do. I have a sister-in-law who is hypoglycemic and she goes into a tailspin if she gets too much sugar.
Posted on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 6:47 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

To Cassi: No. But whenever I test even a little bitin my diet, I pay the price in a highs and lows. It's not worth it, and I don't even like it anymore. Call me a party-pooper, but I'm a happy one anyway. Thanks
Carol H
Posted on Wednesday, January 17, 2001 - 2:58 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Deb A,
I read the research regarding fructose and heart disease, and it is something to consider when choosing a sweetener. As you mentioned, the body will break table sugar (sucrose) into two pieces - one of which is fructose. So someone is not particularly doing well by eating table sugar or even honey instead of fructose. It's really a question of choosing your poison. If you do choose fructose, remember also that it is found in fruit and fruit juice, which contain soluble fiber which brings the risk down. The research also states that increasing healthy fats will help mitigate any raising of triglycerides from fructose. I use fructose on a regular basis, instead of sugar, and I have for a few years now. Last year when the doctors did that arterial bypass on me, it was because my artery had a kink in it, not because of cholesterol. The vascular surgeon said my arteries were "pristine". I also eat olive oil, and seldom eat red meat. I guess I believe there are no good foods and no bad foods, just choices you make due to your own health. I still think fructose in the form of fruit or fruit juice is better than sucrose or honey to prevent hypoglycemia. And, limiting sweets in general is good advice for preventing hypoglycemia.
Deb A.
Posted on Wednesday, January 17, 2001 - 6:14 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Carol, you said it so well. Lately, I have really made an effort to cut down on sugar consumption. The holidays are terrible for me if I eat too many desserts, and the weight gain isn't really worth it. I notice that when we eat fewer desserts, we don't crave sweet foods as much, which is wonderful if you are trying to lose weight. Today I made a cake (my son and my husband have been neglected lately). This time I started with 3 cups of whole wheat flour, and I added 1 cup, instead of the standard 2 cups of sugar. I then added a little stevia, about 1/2 t. It was plenty sweet and made a huge cake. If anyone wants to try making the cake, it took 2 t. of baking soda, and 1/2 t. of baking powder. It doesn't call for eggs, but you could add one. Add a little water if the batter is too thick. Bake for 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean at 350 degrees. I added 2 t. ginger, 1/4 t. cayenne powder, 2 t. cinnamon, 1 t. cloves and a little nutmeg. Even without frosting, it's good. Instead of the 2/3 cup of oil it calls for, I added 1/3 to 1/2 c. oil and a pureed qt. of my apricots. It was very moist. I think I could have gotten by with 2/3 cup of sugar.
Carol H
Posted on Sunday, April 08, 2001 - 6:46 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Deb A, I just realized something else. If someone is allergic to wheat, and I noticed many people on this board have food allergies, cane is related to the wheat family. Wheat allergic persons may wish to avoid cane sugar anyway.
Deb A.
Posted on Monday, April 09, 2001 - 1:51 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

That's interesting, Carol. Never knew they were related. What do you use for sweeteners? How do you do with honey?
Carol H
Posted on Monday, April 09, 2001 - 2:29 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Deb A, I use honey in my bread machine breads. It has humectant properties, which keeps the bread nice and moist longer. I use fructose on my blueberries and in my coffee. I also use mostly fruit juice sweetened purees on things like waffles.
Deb A.
Posted on Monday, April 09, 2001 - 5:24 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I like honey and should try to use it in baking. I know there are some good "honey" cookbooks out there. Where do you get the fruit juice sweetened puree? Brand? No sulfites? I use honey in my breads often, but haven't tried cakes or cookies. Love it!
Debbie D
Posted on Monday, June 11, 2001 - 8:39 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

DebA: Have you ever heard of fructose intolerance? I suffer from terrible gas & bloating after eating most forms of sugar especially: dried fruits, bananas, peaches, candy, etc. My doctor suspects lactose intolerance so I am in the midst of omitting dairy (except 100% lactose free milk in coffee) but I'm still suffering. Now that I've discovered this MSG thing I'm wondering. Also, re: frozen foods- if I buy frozen broccoli and it is the only ingredient is it MSG free?
Deb A.
Posted on Monday, June 11, 2001 - 4:17 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Debbie D, I suspect that what you are reacting in the foods you have mentioned is sulfites...and of course, MSG. If you are MSG intolerant, even the lactose free milk can be bothering you. Look at the ingredients and list them here so that we can better help you, please. Most commercial milks contain dry milk solids (high in free glutamic acid), and often sulfites, used as preservatives, and in the form of residue from the chemicals used to clean the dairy machinery. Also, are the bananas and peaches fresh or dry? Most dried fruits are treated with sulfites and many contain fructose or dextrose, used as sweeteners. Most of the fructose and dextrose made today are corn by-products, which are high in free glutamate. Table sugar made from beets also contains more free glutamate than that made from cane sugar. Most commercially prepared frozen or canned vegetables contain sulfites, and they can go unlabeled if the amount is under 10 parts per million. Most peeled potato products, fresh, dried, canned, or frozen, contain even more sulfites and do not need to be labeled according to the FDA. Most frozen, or bottled fruit drinks contain sulfites. There is a chapter about them in my book, and also you can find info about sulfites if you do a keyword search here. I suffered the terrible gas and bloating you described for many years before I made the right connection to food toxins. If these suggestions are not the causes, you may be allergic to certain substances in fruits and milk. I suggest you try Rice Dream plain rice milk, and see how you do...or a little organic whole milk, if you can find a good brand. And avoid dry fruits, unless you dry them yourself or they are organic. Most raisins are treated, too, and some with AuxiGro, a metabolic primer sprayed on crops which contains 30% free glutamic acid.
Evelyn H.
Posted on Tuesday, June 12, 2001 - 10:27 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Debbie D.--I can recommend Pavich (I believe that's the name) organic raisins. I eat them with no sulfite reaction (I break out in hives from sulfites). But, I'm not sure how sulfite intolerant I am, because I can also drink commercial milks without reaction.
Deb A.
Posted on Tuesday, June 12, 2001 - 12:49 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Not all commercial milks contain sulfites, Evelyn, and even if they do, the amount is miniscule. The highly sensitive might react to it, though, especially if they drink a lot of milk and eat lots of dairy products. I'll have to look for the Pavich raisins. Thanks for the tip! :)
Posted on Wednesday, June 13, 2001 - 7:51 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'm new at this. I think I am reacting to MSG. Is it in soft drinks? I already avoid aspartame since it makes me flush real bad and makes me very dizzy. I've been tested for gall bladder problems, and no drugs will even touch the headaches I get. All the doctors say I am healthy, but I feel like crap. Excuse me. My son is 6 and he gets wild after eating certain foods like pizza and chips, and I finally decided to do a search on MSG when my neighbor told me about it. I read all the information on Debby Anglesey's site and I was shocked at all the MSG I have been feeding my family. It just seems to be in everything, but since I am so used to fast and easy foods, I'm depressed right now. I'd like to know how long it took some of you to change your diets and if you saw results right away. I am so angry when I think about the food companies and the FDA, which obviously are covering up the truth. If this stuff is as bad as I think it is, this country is in a lot of trouble. All my friends have symptoms and so do their kids. There's lots of ADD andADHD kids in my neighborhood. Sorry to go on so much. Guess I am feeling sorry for myself. But at least, now I might get some relief from this pain.
Evelyn H.
Posted on Wednesday, June 13, 2001 - 10:12 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Karen--Yes, there's plenty of MSG in soft drinks. Your headaches could certainly be caused by MSG. I started looking at MSG last fall as a possible cause my son's hyperactivity and asthma. So, I can relate to what you're saying. My son just turned 6. Once I read Deb's book (I highly recommend it for it's information and also for the great recipes), I began to understand. It's taken awhile and it's not easy, but avoiding MSG has produced marked changes in my son's behavior. I feel much better now and my husband has noticed a decrease in mood swings. We have decided that going the organic route and watching labels for the many hidden names for MSG is worth our while.

Having this group as a resource and support network has also been really helpful. Hang in there. If you need specific ideas for quick foods, etc., let me know. Believe me, I've been where you are (and I'm still not that far away).
Posted on Wednesday, June 13, 2001 - 3:40 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

For some it seems a week or two makes a difference. For me, it took 9 months to feel okay.
Posted on Wednesday, June 13, 2001 - 5:08 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Evelyn and Anonymous, I really want to thank you for responding to my posting. It sure is nice to not feel so all alone. And it's actually good to find out that the soft drinks contain MSG. I have wanted to kick the habit of drinking them and now I have a good reason. I can't make my family give them up if I don't. I have just ordered Debby Angleseys' book, and can't wait to get it. Knowing others have struggled like I am now is such a help. I will do this thing! I have no doubt is is ruining my son's life and I want to tell my neighbors about MSG now. If it helps my headaches, I will be telling everyone I know about this, even my doctor. Thanks, all. Any ideas about what we should drink instead of soft drinks? Bet water is the answer. What about milk?
Posted on Wednesday, June 13, 2001 - 9:07 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

So glad you discovered this website. It has an unbelievable amount of information as well as great support from all the people here. I am down to drinking just water, as are some others, but you don't have to start there. Lots of people do fine with 100% juices, and maybe rotating them would be a good idea. Avoid juice from concentrate. Coffee and teas are fermented. Even herb teas can be a problem for some people because of the added flavors. The older foods get, the more symptoms, like headaches, they can cause. Debby's book is a real eye-opener. She explains how you make MSG right in your pot when you combine meats, vegetables, water, and heat, as in soups and stews (hydrolyzed vegetable protein). There is natural glutamates in virtually everything, even raw fruits and vegetables, in varying amounts. Just keep a record of what you eat. The longer foods are cooked, the more glutamate is released. I can trace my headaches to food every time. There's also sulfites and tyramine to watch out for. Do a word search here for those. Certain vegetables and fruits are loaded with MSG in the AuxiGro that is sprayed on them. It can't be washed off, as it is absorbed by the plant. Strawberries, big Idaho potatoes, and iceberg lettuce almost always have AuxiGro, so use only organic varieties of those foods. I felt better immediately upon changing my diet, although, I continue to get more sensitive rather than less. But there's lots of good foods out there, and they really don't take that much more time to prepare, once you get the routine down.
Good luck, and feel better!
Also, for the really bad headaches, I have found relief from one of the newer prescription drugs, which I take much less of now since watching what I eat. I found the doctors at a local headache clinic very helpful. They generally realize the connection between headaches and MSG, although they have no idea how prevalent MSG really is. I'm doing my best to educate my doctor.
Evelyn H.
Posted on Thursday, June 14, 2001 - 11:23 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Karen--Fruit juices that don't come from concentrates, as Ruth pointed out, can be an alternative. We drink lots of water, lots of lemon water, too. We use rice milk for most cooking. We do drink commercial milk but are planning to make the switch to organic soon. I do OK with coffee as long as I limit the intake. That's really about it. My son doesn't seem to miss soda very much and we do allow him an occasional can when he's at grandma and grandpa's.
Posted on Saturday, June 16, 2001 - 5:52 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I've been making fresh lemonade for several months with fresh lemons from my neighbor's tree, I know he never sprays it with anything, and liquid stevia. I've been using a brand of stevia called Wisdom of the Ancients with no bad reactions and I seem to be very sensative. Watch out though because I've seen powdered stevia with maltodextrin in packets like Nutrasweet or sugar. I use about three drops of stevia per 16 ounces of water and juice of two lemons. If it's Saturday night and I feel really wild I use Perrier water. I don't use any sugar because I'm hypoglycemic and, thanks to all at this website I don't use aspartame any more.
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2001 - 4:46 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Can you tell the difference in the taste between liquid stevia and sugar? I just called the health food store and the brand you use is expensive. I'd like your input before I purchase it.
Deb A.
Posted on Monday, June 18, 2001 - 7:49 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I use the same stevia products, and even at $13.00 a bottle it is a bargain. It is so powerful that it last a long time. I do like adding a little sugar to beverages along with the stevia just because I think it tastes better that way. There is a little after taste that I had to get used to with the stevia, but now I enjoy my iced herb tea (organic peppermint) with it very much.
Karen, tonight I poured the contents of a half gallon of Florida Natural orange juice (fresh, pasteurized into a container and added the same amount of cold water, some stevia and sugar and the juice of one lemon. We love it cold. Since we are babysitting 3 of our grandchildren for the next 2 weeks, I poured some of it into popsicle forms and popped them into the freezer. (I filled 3 forms and there's plenty left in the pitcher to drink. I also blend together cocoa, water, ice, sugar and a little rice milk or milk and use that for popsicles sometimes. A little peppermint oil or some peppermint tea added is nice with the chocolate flavor, too.
Posted on Tuesday, June 19, 2001 - 5:19 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I can definitely tell the difference between lemonade made with sugar and lemonade made with stevia. To me it's just like the difference between lemonade made with sugar or with honey, both are good and have a different taste.
Others tell me stevia has a undertaste but I haven't used it for anything else.

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