MSG Facts vs. Fiction Explained in Recent News Reports

MSG glutamate umami facts.jpg

Science Friday, a nonprofit organization and trusted source for news about science, reports that there is no basis for claims that MSG may cause allergies. And a new study finds that umami flavor in the form of MSG promotes feelings of fullness, helping to satisfy appetite and potentially help with...

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New Video and Infographic Explain Why MSG is Perfectly Safe


According to the American Chemical Society (ACS), monosodium glutamate (MSG) has suffered from inaccurate consumer perceptions for too long - so the non-profit organization has decided to put the consumer myths about MSG to rest. In a new video released in August 2014, ACS corrects the myths about ...

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Glutamate Is Natural

Glutamate Is Natural

Glutamate is common throughout nature. It is a component of your body and your foods. The taste-imparting property of glutamate has long been used around the world to enhance the palatability of foods.

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MSG Safe Use

MSG Safe Use

Over one hundred years ago, Professor Kikunae Ikeda of Tokyo Imperial University discovered the taste that is now recognized internationally as “umami.” It has been established for more than 10 years now that umami, which is the taste imparted by monosodium glutamate (MSG), stands alongside sweet, sour, salty and bitter as one of the five recognized basic tastes.

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What is Monosodium glutamate (MSG)?
In which type of foods is MSG used?
How are glutamate and MSG similar?
Your Questions Answered.

Improving Taste

Monosodium glutamate is used in a wide range of savory foods to create a smooth, rich and full-bodied flavor. It can be added to meat, fish, poultry, vegetable and seafood dishes, and in many countries it is used as a table-top seasoning. In Central Europe, for example, monosodium glutamate forms the basis of a popular salad seasoning.

soup with MSG

Like salt, glutamate can make a variety of foods more appealing, but is not itself particularly palatable. If you dissolve monosodium glutamate in water, it does not have an appealing taste. However, when it is added to soup, it improves many aspects, including taste, mouthfeel and smoothness. In one study, a group of young Americans said that a chicken soup with a small amount of monosodium glutamate was richer, more savory and meatier than the same soup without MSG.

umami taste

The effect of adding the umami taste to foods has been investigated by researchers since the 1950s. The taste of meat dishes, fish and vegetables is usually improved, but cereals, milk products and desserts are not. MSG is added to prepared and processed foods such as frozen foods, spice mixes, canned and dry soups, sauces, dressings and meat-based products such as sausages and hams.