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Mono Sodium Glutamate, High-Fructose Corn Syrup, and the Modern Diet

About 4 years ago, one of the Doctors I was seeing for Migraine headaches began asking me about my diet. Not making any mystery about it, he wanted to know if what I ate affected how I was feeling. He informed me that several of the "Healthy Addictions" I enjoyed every day were actually contributing to my overall malaise. A banana, high in potassium, nature’s perfect food replenishes electrolytic, gives you energy, and is a perfectly natural food. Now add in some nuts. Still good. Until we look at the nuts I am really pigging out on. Pistachios! Yum, love them. Especially the spiced ones, Tobasco, habanero, even garlic. Ok, what’s the problem? First off all, I am eating 2 bananas a day, and a couple of packages of spice pistachios. I am loading myself with almost an overdose level of potassium, and adding in the next secret ingredient: MSG. Based on salt, Mono Sodium Glutamate is used as a flavor enhancer. It floods your system with sodium, increases your thirst, raises your blood pressure, and can cause an adrenaline like surge in heart rate, and the post adrenaline letdown reaction as well. Ok I am not a Doctor, I am not a chemist, I just started to pay attention to what he was pointing out to me. My worst headaches happened after eating anything with MSG, and were exhausting if I had eaten a banana at lunch. I have been a runner most of my life, heck 20 years in the Army, you run 3-5 times a week every week. He wanted to test me for diabetes. I thought he was kidding, I was still, well maybe not skinny, but I wasn't fat enough to be a Diabetic! Right? My mistakes, Diabetics are not all fat, or skinny, or anything. I am a Type II Diabetic, which means it developed in my adult years, due to my diet. OK! I like to eat, but I don't Binge and I don't do all those other BAD things that Diabetics do, so you got to be WRONG! Wrong! I was guilty of the Modern Diet. Lunch time is a quick hurry-up affair, just get a Burger, Fries, Cola, maybe a Dessert pie in a little snack box. And on those days were I just knew I could not face another Heart attack in a sack, I would load up on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and a couple of favorite variety snack cakes on plastic, buy a soda, and have at it! Anybody know what carbohydrates are? Know where to find them? I do. They are on the wrapper of the snack cake, the back of the store bought jelly jar, the bread loaf wrapper, and on the wall menu at the drive thru die-near, opps! drive thru diner. Carbs are the little suppliers of the extras in our diets, the things that burn up quickly, creating a niche for themselves in our body’s choices of nutrition. We get a Sugar Rush from carbs, either as sugar or as something that becomes a sugar rapidly in our system. The more we use it, the more we like it. The more we like it the more we are going to seek out those things that give them to us quickly, even if our bodies are not in need of nutrition! We feed ourselves more carbs because we want them even when we are full, because the will kick in to our blood sugar rapidly, fire us up for a little while, then let us crash. There is no reason for the 2 pm crash, our bodies still have stored energy in the system that could be used, but the system has used up the carbs, and cannot switch fuels to the slower burning fats and other nutrition we have stored. These begin to pack themselves in to our bodies, stashing away as extra pounds here and there, until we need them. We won't need them as long as we keep on filling up on carbs, but we can’t tell ourselves this.  Last thing, High Fructose Corn Syrup. A long fancy term for sugar in very digestible forms. As in it gets into your blood stream extremely fast, and gets used up very fast, and gives you a Sugar Rush when you eat it. Where is it? On the same labels as all of those Carbs, in your Bread, Soda, Jelly, Ketchup, Hamburger Bun.

We are becoming a nation of Diabetics, because we are loading our systems down with Sugars that mimic those of nature, but are not found in nature. We shove them in to our mouths at a higher rate than any naturally occurring sugar could be digested, and expect our under exercised bodies to deal with it. Our bodies cannot, and we become dependent on medications to remain alive.  More later when I get another sugar rush. Bye for now!

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Comment by Jennifer on April 25, 2013 at 3:52pm

Rick: Thanks for sharing this—and for the reminder that you can't rely only on preconceptions as the warning signs for disease (Who, me, a diabetic? Nah!). Also a good reminder to cut the salt!

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