Last night, I made a terrible mistake. Very tired and very hungry, I decided to have a quick dinner and settled upon the Goya Jamaican Beef Patties, sold in my supermarket’s frozen food section. That was my second mistake. My first mistake was not checking the label before I went to the checkout counter. I’d never seen this product before, and it ended up being LOADED with MSG. I should’ve known better.
I knew the amount of MSG in it had to have been significant, because within just a few minutes of eating one of the patties, my head started to pound, my face became flushed, and I began to feel slightly disoriented. I checked the box and near the end of the (very large) list of ingredients was, monosodium glutamate, hydrolyzed protein, and soy lecithin. If I had been as diligent yesterday as I usually am when shopping, I would’ve checked the box before putting it into my basket. I’m trying not to be too hard on myself, because I know how difficult it is to keep MSG out of my diet. But I was extremely disappointed that I messed up on checking the package.
Once I realized I’d been MSG poisoned again, I just resigned myself to feeling horribly for the rest of the evening, and waking up the next morning feeling like a freight train had just run through my head. And that’s when I looked to my left, picked up, sipped, and unknowingly discovered the antidote — my glass of Seagram’s Ginger Ale!
Yup, as it turns out, one of my long-time, favorite beverages is an amazing MSG cure! A few sips and just two minutes later, the pounding in my head lessened and then completely stopped. Later, after going to bed, I woke up in the middle of the night, and my head began to pound again. Two sips of Ginger Ale and it was gone. I woke up this morning feeling fabulous with none of the usual “hangover” symptoms I normally have after an MSG poisoning!
I’ve enjoyed Ginger ale for years, but I was absolutely shocked and stunned by this and immediately began to do some research.
Ginger, as it turns out, has been found to counteract not only the effects of MSG, but the myriad of health problems MSG is linked to, including, eye and brain cell damage, nerve damage, depletion of dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine in several studies. In addition, studies have effectively linked MSG consumption to several neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.
Ginger root extract can completely reverse the neurotransmitter depletion and brain damage that MSG can cause. Ginger is also a natural pain reliever, digestive aid and detoxifier.
Both Seagram’s and Canada Dry offer Ginger Ales using real Ginger. I stick to one or the other, as they are the most readily available where I live. Both brands proudly state on their labels that they are “made with real ginger.”
Other great ginger beverage options include ginger tea, ginger beer and any beverage that includes genuine ginger root extract. I will recommend Zevia — which offers a ginger ale and a ginger root beer option. Note that Zevia includes caramel coloring — which really should be avoided by us MSG-sensitive folks, but is included in most brands of Ginger Ale and Ginger Beer. Seagram’s and Canada Dry DO NOT have artificial sweeteners, BUT, they include the dreaded high fructose corn syrup and caramel coloring. They are two of the most popular Ginger ale brands on the market. Also be sure to check Ginger Ale ingredient labels to avoid artificial sweeteners, and stay away from diet Ginger ale.
I highly recommend these Ginger Ale and Ginger beer brands:
- Polar Premium Ginger Ale (highly recommend)
- Bruce Cost Ginger Ale (super strong)
- Parker’s Ginger Beer
- Fentimans Traditional Ginger Beer
- Reed’s Premium Ginger Brew (sweetened w/honey & pineapple juice)
- Americana Ginger Ale
- Thomas Kemper Purely Natural
If you’re not a fan of Ginger ale, Ginger chews are a great option. They’re made from real pieces of Ginger root, and contain all of the natural ingredients. Natural Ginger contains essential oils, called gingerols, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, that are key in treating MSG poisoning. Another study shows gingerols are effective in killing ovarian cancer cells and also aid in killing arthritis pain. One thing to note about Ginger chews is that they are high in sugar. If you ate say, six Ginger chews, you would end up consuming about the same amount of sugar as you would in a can of soda. They also provide relief from nausea, which can also occur from MSG poisoning. The Ginger chews are also a great option because you can just pop them into your purse or pocket.
I have also found a few studies that indicate Vitamin C is also an antidote for MSG poisoning. But the studies I’ve found say that Vitamin C is most effective when coupled with Ginger root extract.
You can find Ginger root, candied ginger, etc., at your local health food store. Prices on Ginger root will vary, depending on where you live. But it will range from $5 up to $9 per pound. Fresh ginger is very easy to find at better produce stores and gourmet food shops, and at Asian markets. If you have a sweet tooth, organic candied Ginger can be pricey — going for as much as $13/per pound. A cheaper option for Ginger candy of good quality is the Prince of Peace brand of 100% natural Ginger candy, available at Vitamin Shoppe and GNC stores for about $2.50/per bag.
A good idea for when you’re a dinner party guest, or visiting a restaurant you’ve never been to before — and you’re not sure if what you’re eating is MSG-free, is to ask for a glass of Ginger ale to enjoy with your meal.
I’ll be taking a trip over to the local health food store later on today to pick up some Ginger to keep available in my purse from now on.
NEXT: Surviving Summer Picnics and Barbecues Healthy and MSG Free