1

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MSG vs Aspartame

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 15, 2013 at 6:21 AM

We all know about both being excitatory chemicals and bad for our health. Which one is worse?

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on January 15, 2013
at 10:22 PM

Agree about the *acute* trouble. Back in the day, I drank a ton of Crystal Light (aspartame). Never noticed any side-effects, but who's to say I wouldn't have blown a few brain cells a couple decades down the line if I had continued using it?

3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on January 15, 2013
at 09:07 PM

Which is worse getting punched in the mouth or getting punched in the gut -- cause not getting punched is not an option for me.

A2c38be4c54c91a15071f82f14cac0b3

(12682)

on January 15, 2013
at 08:46 PM

While I tentatively agree that MSG is worse than aspartame, I don't think the science is that clear. It does seem to cause overeating and some people are sensitive to it, but beyond that I find the evidence of its "excitoxicity" underwhelming (when consumed rather than, say, injected into a rat's hippocampus).

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on January 15, 2013
at 09:54 AM

i can never remember, is msg natural or artificial? i vaguely recall it can be either (depending on the source?). Aspartame i know (wiki knows) is artificial, "dipeptide of the natural amino acids L-aspartic acid and L-phenylalanine"...no surprise that i have no idea which is worse, tho aspartame is easier to avoid (artificial sweetener)

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7 Answers

3
Ee6932fe54ad68039a8d5f7a8caa0468

(2668)

on January 15, 2013
at 09:56 PM

i'll be honest, i don't regularly consume either, but neither has ever cause me acute trouble. anyway, i'm a lot more concerned about rancid oils and other issues.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on January 15, 2013
at 10:22 PM

Agree about the *acute* trouble. Back in the day, I drank a ton of Crystal Light (aspartame). Never noticed any side-effects, but who's to say I wouldn't have blown a few brain cells a couple decades down the line if I had continued using it?

2
0156dcc25110efb6351e5308fbe57b86

on January 16, 2013
at 04:23 PM

So why is MSG so bad for you? I've made a lot of Japanese recipes calling for making dashi stock from dried kelp, where you simmer the kelp and it releases glutamate, similar to how bones release gelatin when simmered. MSG is just glutamate stabilized with table salt, so if glutamate is natural and could be obtained during Paleo times from the sea, and salt is equally natural, why are the two together suddenly so bad for you?

1
A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on January 15, 2013
at 07:43 PM

MSG has been shown to have negative effects and the science is pretty clear. (google glutamate + excitotoxicity)

Asparatme may also be an excitotoxin, but the evidence is not as strong. Aspartame may have other problems as well.

MSG would seem to be worse than aspartame, but why take chances. The precautionary principle would avoid them both on the basis that we do not have enough information and we are probably better suited to foods that have been eaten for a long time. In my mind, foods created after the industrial revolution are probably worse than foods made available by agriculture and pastoralism (grains and dairy).

A2c38be4c54c91a15071f82f14cac0b3

(12682)

on January 15, 2013
at 08:46 PM

While I tentatively agree that MSG is worse than aspartame, I don't think the science is that clear. It does seem to cause overeating and some people are sensitive to it, but beyond that I find the evidence of its "excitoxicity" underwhelming (when consumed rather than, say, injected into a rat's hippocampus).

0
589dbc46d802621f759a2a05ec1aa72c

on April 16, 2013
at 11:54 PM

I had serious, severe acute symptoms from aspartame before I had ever heard it was controversial, in the early 1980s. I was one of the first people I knew to insist that it's dangerous. MSG causes problems for me, but not as severely. I can eat a packet of ramen and not always get sick. But if I have a drink made with aspartame, I feel it every time: sharp pains all over my body, head to toe, blurred vision and a popping sound in my ears, just for starters.

0
97d98cdf2f18fa2c0bd8567ea1159609

on January 15, 2013
at 08:14 PM

I don't take any chances; I avoid both. I know both aspartame and MSG have shown negative effects to health. To which is worse, I haven't a clue. To truly have an idea as to which is worse, there would need to be a study comparing the effects of the two.

-1
Ed79ecc1b1986599fd8cc993ec03400c

on April 16, 2013
at 11:40 PM

I suffered from both. Started a website after being wrongly diagnosed and told I was headed for a wheel chair within 3 months. It was all credited to MSG and Aspartame.

-1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 15, 2013
at 06:28 AM

i use MSG on my caged chicken patties and grain fed antibiotic meat with pesticides. i use aspartame for my whole wheat pancakes and kool aid.no probs man, they are both safe. if they werent you think the FDA would approve of it? huh you think you know everything. your body needs stress to become stronger. that why i eat a lot of white sugar and brown grains like kamut and millet and quinoa. they are good for us. im not a caveman i dont hunt for animals. im a modern pussy who lives in a city and eat grains. im weak and ill die of diabetes oh well who cares?

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