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Old 02-22-2007, 05:38 PM   #11
Robb Wolf
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Robb you've got it all backwards...what were you doing living with a cambodian family? Your supposed to adopt a 14 year old cambodian girl and have her live with you! Man i thought you were a genius. I need to re-think all the advice I've been following of yours.
Spoken in the voice of Brian Griffen:"Ohhh Wow! I am soooo uncomfortable!"
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Old 02-22-2007, 08:29 PM
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Old 02-22-2007, 09:51 PM   #12
Allison Barns
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It's very hard to sacrifice your sacred cows.
I am most happy to eat any cow, sacred or not, that doesn't make me ill.
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Old 02-23-2007, 06:54 AM   #13
Stuart Mather
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I am most happy to eat any cow, sacred or not, that doesn't make me ill.
Allison, wasn't the point Mike Eades was trying to make that many foods naturally contain glutamate anyway, so Chinese Restaurant syndrome couldn't possibly be real? Of course psychologically induced sensitivities can indeed produce very real symptoms, so somebody would have to have a double blind test (properly constructed, eg. the person administering the test would have to be a chinese restaurant syndrome skeptic to avoid subliminal messages )
Only then would you discover wether the very real sickness you were experiencing was down to the MSG itself, or your fear of MSG making you sick. Bone pointing is a masterful way to make someone ill , if of course they believe in bone pointing. And any hypnotist will concede that hypnosis skeptics make hopeless hypnotees. Even acupuncture is a waste of time and money if the person being treated is an acupuncture sceptic. The human mind is a very mischeivous monkey.

No one's doubting that you get sick if you know (or have reason to believe) the food you are eating contains MSG, but I think Mike Eades blog explained pretty clearly why the MSG itself couldn't possibly be responsible. Of course you could be sensitive to glutamate itself. But that would make having a paleo dietary approach pretty difficult. The most conspicuous thing about your reaction is that you seem to be appalled at even the suggestion that you could be suffering from a psychosomatic effect. Why?

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Old 02-23-2007, 10:27 PM   #14
Allison Barns
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Stuart -
I have had the "it's psychosomatic" conversation too many times in my life to be appalled by it. Annoyed? Yes! Appalled? No. It could be "all in my head" and, if so, if someone can show me the way to truly get rid of the food/substance intolerance, I welcome it whole-heartedly!

What appalls me is the idea of testing a friend without the friend's consent. IMHO, this is, at the least, disrespectful of your friend's stated need, and at the worst, potentially very, very dangerous to your friend's health.

As far as the 'it's naturally occurring' argument... perhaps something in the change from the 'natural' state to the 'additive' state changes the composition such that MSG makes some of us react badly to it. I don't know the mechanism. I am pretty darn certain of the effect on my body and so I avoid it. Someone smarter than I am in nutrition/food composition may have an answer for that. If so, I'd love to see it.
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Old 02-23-2007, 10:29 PM   #15
Allison Barns
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Originally Posted by Robb Wolf View Post
Spoken in the voice of Brian Griffen:"Ohhh Wow! I am soooo uncomfortable!"
Uh... where did the Cambodian family come in here?? Oh yeah, the big bag of white stuff. MSG, huh? Sure---and it's oregano you've got in that baggie right?
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Old 02-24-2007, 12:00 AM   #16
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. It could be "all in my head" and, if so, if someone can show me the way to truly get rid of the food/substance intolerance, I welcome it whole-heartedly!

What appalls me is the idea of testing a friend without the friend's consent. IMHO, this is, at the least, disrespectful of your friend's stated need, and at the worst, potentially very, very dangerous to your friend's health.

As far as the 'it's naturally occurring' argument... perhaps something in the change from the 'natural' state to the 'additive' state changes the composition such that MSG makes some of us react badly to it. I don't know the mechanism. I am pretty darn certain of the effect on my body and so I avoid it. Someone smarter than I am in nutrition/food composition may have an answer for that. If so, I'd love to see it.
Allison, glad you're not appalled after all. You can easily discover whether it is all in your mind. If you discover that it is, you will be a little bit closer to not having the psychosomatic reaction. I'm not saying it will be easy to rid yourself of the problem. But if you know that you have to be aware that MSG is in the food you are eating before it affects you, you can only be empowered by that knowledge.

As to the ethical considerations, of course it would need to be you who initiated the experiment. If you indeed do have a chemical sensitivity to MSG (and from your description it is very pronounced) then to minimise any potential discomfort all you have to do is stipulate that the intitial 'positive' event is a tiny dose.

But Allison, you have to be willing and able to contend with the possibility that is 'all in your mind'. If you are not, as an obviously sharp mind, you will inevitably find a way to thwart what you might construe as embarrassing results.

Think of it in a true spirit of enquiry. The human mind is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master. Millions of years of evolution have seen to that.

Of course, you may be more than happy with 'pretty darn certain'. But if you haven't performed a double blind test on yourself, 'pretty darn certain' becomes merely an 'educated guess'.

Stuart.
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Old 02-25-2007, 02:22 PM   #17
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Stuart,
My 'pretty darn certain' comes from having several events where I experienced the physical effect after eating foods I knew to contain MSG, and also having several events where I experienced the same effect after eating foods that I was not aware contained MSG at the time I ate it. I would review the ingredients of everything I had eaten and discover MSG was indeed somewhere in the food. So, in short it when from a ‘if I eat MSG, I get back spasms + headache of a very specific type’ thing to ‘when I get back spasms + headache of a very specific type, it is highly likely I had MSG’ thing.

As an example, last Thanksgiving I woke on Friday with the headache/backache characteristic of my body's reaction to MSG. Most of the food I had eaten the days prior I had prepared myself and so I knew all the ingredients. One exception was sweet potatoes prepared by my sister. She used a canned broth in the recipe. When we reviewed the ingredients in the broth we found it did contain MSG. At the time I ate it, I didn't know and had absolutely no reason to believe it had any MSG. My sister is aware of my sensitivity and tried to be careful with the recipe. I have had experiences like that several times and so, yes, I am pretty darn certain MSG causes the specific reaction. I have gone through that process many times, and I am sure I will again because MSG can indeed be found in many foods. In the meantime, I avoid MSG because a couple of days of back-spasms and headache is really unpleasant.

Allison
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Old 02-25-2007, 06:02 PM   #18
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Allison, sounds like you're stuck with it .

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Old 02-25-2007, 06:49 PM   #19
Allison Barns
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Allison, sounds like you're stuck with it .

Stuart
Yes, I think you are correct. Thanks for trying to help .
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