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Seeing is Believing: Visuals Help Explain MSG Safety and Benefits

By October 21, 2014January 24th, 2018Featured, MSG
Is our food safe -- MSG safety

It’s hard to deny that we live in a society that thrives on visual information: gigantic TV screens, large and easy to read cellphone screens, 3-D movies, video games that make Pong look prehistoric, and so forth… and it is not just tweens and Gen-Xers who can’t live without these remarkable innovations.

I certainly could not have imagined the technological advances we are now seeing (and will continue to see) in the way we communicate. Gone are the days of some now archaic methods (remember overhead projectors?) once used to inform and educate. In my opinion, though, flash cards were ahead of their time, but now they are computerized!

According to Lawrence Ragan Communications (publishers of PR Daily), 90 percent of the information your brain receives is visual and more than 60 percent of people are visual learners. That said, it’s become increasingly important that quality research is showcased in forms other than a lengthy scientific study. Below I’ve outlined some easy-to-understand visuals that will help consumers learn more about the safety of monosodium glutamate (MSG).

The first is a recently released video distributed by the American Chemical Society. Although this video was discussed in a recent blog, it is definitely worthy of another mention. Please take a look.

One of my very favorites is a presentation by Chef David Chang. “David Chang, the renowned chef and owner of Momofuku restaurant group, talked about Umami taste and MSG at MAD 2012, addressing what he considers the vilification of MSG head-on… MAD 2012 is the second symposium organized by René Redzepi the culinary genius and chef at NOMA restaurant in Copenhagen. The two day event brought together some of the food world’s great names – and thinkers – to discuss every aspect of Appetite.”

And I encourage you to take a look at this compelling infographic, which offers a sensible evaluation of the safety of monosodium glutamate.

Another of my picks is a snappy video that’s nicely animated while explaining the five basic tastes, including umami, and the umami-glutamate-MSG connection.

On an even lighter note, this fun-but-fact-packed video should peak your interest in MSG and answer some questions you may have.

And lastly, we cannot forget about a “docudrama” about the scientist who discovered the fifth taste (umami) in 1908. Thank you Dr. Ikeda!

Kaye is an author and consulting nutritionist with more than 15 years’ experience representing clients in the food industry, providing strategic leadership and consulting on meal planning, recipe development, consumer-focused educational materials relating to food and nutrition, science-based communications, and media relations. Read more about her background on the About page.

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