A Thumbs Up Book Review
Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills
By Russell Blaylock, MD
Review by Sally Fallon
“What if someone were to tell you that a chemical added to food could cause brain damage in your children, and that this chemical could effect how your children’s nervous systems formed during development so that in later years they might have learning or emotional difficulties? What if there was scientific evidence that these chemicals could damage a critical part of the brain known to control hormones so that later in life your child might have endocrine problems? How would you feel?”
You would feel alarmed, deceived and angry. We hope that Dr. Blaylock’s well-researched critique of the excitotoxins–MSG, hydrolyzed vegetable protein and aspartame- will create a ground swell of indignation against the continued adulteration of our food with these taste-enhancing substances. Babies and growing children are especially vulnerable to damage from synthetic glutamate-containing substances, because their blood-brain barrier is not fully developed. MSG and the other excitotoxins can cause irreparable damage to the hypothalamus and glutamate-dependent nerve cells in several areas of the brain, yet MSG and hydrolyzed protein are routinely added to baby foods and other food items aimed at young children!
Diets high in excitotoxins can cause learning disabilities, nervous disorders, seizures and hormonal imbalances in children. They are equally toxic to the elderly as they have been implicated as a major cause of the degenerative nervous disorders now afflicting adults with greater and greater frequency–Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, Lou Gehrig’s and brain cancer. At any age, MSG, hydrolyzed protein and aspartame may cause headaches, seizures and allergic reactions in those who are sensitive.
The volume of medical literature implicating excitotoxins is impressive–yet the FDA still allows their use in food. Worse, much MSG is not labeled and therefore remains hidden. Only pure MSG must be labeled. If a spice or flavoring mixture contains less than 100% MSG, it need not be indicated on the label. Foods containing hidden MSG include sodium caseinate, calcium caseinate, yeast extract, textured protein, autolyzed yeast, hydrolyzed flour, malt extract, malt flavoring, bouillon, broth, stock, “flavoring,” “natural flavoring,” “seasoning,” “spices,” carrageenan, enzymes, soy protein concentrate, soy protein isolate and whey protein concentrate. Various types of hydrolyzed protein are actually the precursors for MSG and are possibly more toxic.
The food industry has mounted enormous resistance to full labeling of MSG because it needs it to give flavor to ersatz imitation products. Virtually all canned and dehydrated soups, sauce mixes, frozen prepared dinners and canned condiments contain MSG or hydrolyzed vegetable protein to give them flavor. Otherwise these products would be bland and inedible.
Dr. Blaylock explains how synthetic glutamate-containing substances work to destroy nerve cells in certain areas of the brain. He gives important advice for improving our resistance to the ubiquitous excitotoxins. Excess exposure to aluminum, low blood sugar and deficiencies in magnesium and the antioxidants make us more vulnerable to the effects of MSG and related substance. But the best defense is to avoid them altogether by avoiding processed food.
Excitotoxins is a readable, ground-breaking work that should convince the most devout junkaholics to return to home cooking and whole foods. Available from Radiant Life at (888) 593-8333.🖨️ Print post