WWW.truthinlabeling.org -- Home page

MSG, glutamate, MSG, MSG, glutamate, MSG glutamate, glutamate, MSG, glutamate, MSG, MSG, MSG, glutamate
I've been able to identify that my illness was indeed due to MSG and I've been able to avoid it almost completely for over a year now.

Subj: Thank you!
Date: 02/08/2001 9:08:37 PM Pacific Standard Time

Dear Jack and Adrienne,

I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for producing your MSG
website at www.truthinlabeling.org. My wife found it a year or so ago and
thought it might be an explanation for the mysterious malady I'd been
suffering from for years and years, and it was like a godsend. With the
information you've presented I've been able to identify that my illness was
indeed due to MSG and I've been able to avoid it almost completely for over
a year now.

Ever since my mid-twenties (I'm 45 now), I had been suffering continuously
from what I called "attacks". They were like an awful combination of a
hangover and an allergic reaction: headache, sinus congestion, watery eyes,
upset stomach, bowel disorder, aching muscles in the neck and shoulders,
facial puffiness, general malaise and depression, irritability and
anger. This would last from six to 18 hours, relentlessly. There was
almost nothing I could do about them, except sometimes a combination of
pseudoephedrine and aspirin would help a little. These attacks would
strike unpredictably, sometimes as long as a month apart but sometimes
three times in a week.

I suspected dozens of causes and tried at least as many remedies. I saw
doctors and specialists and went through batteries of tests, and nothing
came of it. I suspected MSG, in fact, but there were so many times I was
stricken without having had MSG (or so I thought) that I discounted it. It
wasn't until I learned the many guises of MSG from your website that it all
finally came together and I found relief.

My particular sensitivity to MSG seems to be this: it takes at least six
hours for the reaction to begin, and I also seem to be able to tolerate
some small amounts of it. This has made isolating the problem extremely
difficult. Now that I'm careful to avoid all the code words for MSG which
you point out on your website, I am almost completely free from the
attacks. There are still occasional times when I'll get the reaction,
sometimes I suspect due to MSG from a restaurant or dinner at friends'
houses. And I also think there are certain combinations of food which can
somehow aggravate my response. For example, I can drink wine OR eat
chocolate without problems, but on at least five separate occasions I've
been able to identify an attack associated with wine AND chocolate (and no
other known MSG). Very complicated!

Anyway, I wanted to share my particular relationship with MSG but most of
all to thank you for providing the key to finally escaping this awful
cycle. I know it must be a lot of work to compile and present all the
information that you have, and to keep as active as you do in the cause,
and I want you to know how much it has meant to me. It has literally
turned my life around, and I am very grateful. I am also sending a
contribution to TLC at the address in your website, to help in a small way.

With Deepest Gratitude,



When we receive e-mails such as yours, it makes us feel that our work over the past 12 years has been worthwhile. We are very pleased to know that our Web site helped you.

You mentioned that you have suffered MSG-type attacks from alcohol on some occasions. Although all alcohol, fermented products, contain small amounts of processed free glutamic acid (MSG), it is likely that you may be able to tolerate some alcoholic drinks because of the fact that you have some tolerance for MSG. I would think, however, that beer, especially domestic beer, may cause you a problem.

When you reacted to wine, I strongly suspect that you had ingested a small amount of MSG, possibly an amount that would not ordinarily have caused a reaction if ingested in the absence of alcohol. Any amount of alcohol ingested with a meal that contains processed free glutamic acid (MSG) causes many people to react to lower amounts of MSG than usual, and to often cause a more serious attack than usual. Extreme physical exertion, jogging, for example, just before or just following ingestion of MSG will act similarly.

Please send a copy of your outstanding letter to your congressperson and senators in Washington along with a short explanation. Ask that they force the FDA to require that all processed foods be measured for free glutamic acid, post production, and that if free glutamic acid is found to be present that it be disclosed on the food labels as "MSG," with the amounts present stated in milligrams.

Jack Samuels

Back to Letters

850 DeWitt Place, Suite 20B, Chicago, IL  60611
adandjack@aol.com 858/481-9333 http://www.truthinlabeling.org

This page was last updated on June 7, 2004.