When I was a child many years ago, everyone was afraid to eat coconut oil because studies showed it did terrible things to your arteries, much more so than other oils. Juice, however, was consumed with abandon since it was made entirely from fruit.

Now we know that was all wrong, but why were these myths so long lived?

Well, there were studies that showed an absolute link between the consumption coconut oil and heart disease. Problem is that the coconut oil used in the studies was partially hydrogenated. And fruit with its fiber and pectin does not cause the insulin spike that refined, pasteurized juice does. As it turned out, the food was not the issue, the changes made to the food were the issue.

So now we come to MSG versus glutamic acid. The difference here is just like the difference between partially hydrogenated coconut oil (which IS bad for you) and extra virgin cold pressed coconut oil which many scientists now believe is good for you.

Glutamic acid is so necessary to human life that if you never eat it your body will make it from other proteins. You will, of course, eat it as it is in lots of healthy foods and yes it makes them taste better, but if you never ate it your body would make it anyway as it is critical to the proper function of neurotransmitters.

Monosodium glutamate is NOT necessary to life and your body does NOT make it. Yes its just one extra sodium atom but remember that the difference between hydrogen and water is just one little oxygen atom. One atom can make a big difference.

Monosodium glutamate is NOT produced by the human body, does NOT occur in nature, and many studies show it to be harmful to humans, rats and other mammals. The current thinking is not that it is OK, just that it is not harmful enough at low doses to be banned. There is a difference.

So, if your favorite foods contain glutamic acid, its OK, enjoy them. Your body wants and needs glutamic acid. If they contain MSG, remember that MSG is what they feed to rats when they want them to become obese. Personally, if I am going to become obese, I want the cause to be chocolate and eggnog, not MSG.

Here are a few links you may find helpful in checking my facts

Definition of MSG
Definition of glutamic acid

Please note the multiple health benefits of glutamic acid as compared to all the “hey its not proven… yet” backpedaling on MSG. Also note that they are different molecules.

Oh and about those unproven effects of MSG, please note all the studies done with MSG induced obese rats. That means that when the scientist needed a fat rat they fed him or her MSG.
Or if you are more interested in brain damage please note the third sentence in about how we learned 50 years ago that MSG is neurotoxic.

I think I will stick with the seaweed.