Is Walmart MSG's Pimp?
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Need a free glutamic acid Fix? Walmart has you covered!
by N J Howell
Today, I heard someone coming out of Walmart say "I like shopping at Walmart because you can get everything you want in one place." I started to laugh, thinking "really?". I have to scour the entire, huge super-wally-world to find just a few things I can actually use. They fooled me recently by adding in some "organic" products. They were on our local Walmart shelves for a short time. Then, they started going away and what I see now are mostly items with one organic ingredient. Like the Sensible Portions cheese puffs. Made with organic corn. But the word "ORGANIC" is huge on the front while the "made with" is smaller so I'm sure a lot harried parents just grab the bag without further reading. That's what the marketing folks are hoping will happen.
Are you addicted to Walmart? I am, to some extent. I shop at Walmart too, despite not being able to find more than a handful of food items that I feel are actually healthy to put in my mouth. Why? Convenience and price on other items such as toilet paper and non-consumables. I'm not proud of it. Why do I continue to support the monster? Can I wean myself off Wally-World?
I'm going to try, again. I seldom do shop there but admit there are times when the nearest good store, meaning one where I can get at least a few true organic products, is inconvient.
Is Walmart MSG's Pimp?
That's a very aggressive and confrontational statement, I know. I hope it got your attention. I ask this question only after spending hours and hours (literally, aisle by aisle) in the food products section of Walmart Super Centers and deciding that there would only be the overwhelming presence of this ingredient, by design. Walmart execs want MSG in their products. It's a deliberate choice.
I have never seen such a broad array of products that either have monosodium glutamate listed outright in the ingredients in products or more than one ingredient which is typically used to hide msg, or free glutamic acid, in foods we eat.
Monosodium Glutamate or ingredients tagged for often containing hidden msg / free glutamic acid appear to be in almost every item at Walmart. I am not exaggerating. If it's to be consumed by a human, and Walmart sells it, you may safely assume it has MSG. The exceptions are rare, like count on one hand rare.
If you doubt it, arm yourself with a list of ingredients with hidden msg before your next shopping trip to Wally-World (you'll see a link to the Truth in Labeling website below for that information) and see how many food items you can find that don't have more than one of these ingredients on the label. In addition, you'll see other unhealthy ingredients just as prominently there, in bed with msg, as it were. You'll see high fructose corn syrup, aspartame, xylitol, sorbitol and hydrogenated oils. In fact, if I were to counsel someone on how to become less healthy, strictly thru diet alone, I can think of no better advice than "buy all your food at Walmart."
The overwhelming prevalence of msg or hidden msg ingredients in Walmart foods is what leads me to believe there must have been a conscious decision about this and that's why I am calling Walmart an MSG pimp. As I said earlier, and it bears repeating, I believe the powers that be in this organization must be well aware that excitotoxins such as MSG cause substandard foods to taste better. MSG is not called a flavor enhancer for nothing. MSG excites the brain cells, that's the excito- part. The toxin part is where MSG kills brain cells. Regardless of whether it helps food taste better,
msg is an excito-toxin that is
poisonous to the body and it is the excitotoxin of choice in children's foods, in particular.
An Exception to the MSG Rule?
In my last visit to Wally-World, I was absolutely shocked to see some chicken tenders that appear to be msg-free and also free of antibiotics. They are from a company called Harvest Land Brand. Though I don't have a strong trust level with any Tyson or Perdue product, it appears that (at least at time of this posting in May of 2012) that the Harvest Land brand chicken at Walmart is indeed MSG free and also truly antibiotic-free.
However, I have an email out to the customer support for Harvest Land Brand, to confirm that the chicken is not soaked in any "solution" or "broth" which may also contain msg in some form. Update: It's months later and no reply from Harvest Land reps. I was going to add a link to the Harvest Land Brand website but my virus protection blocked me after trying to click to any link from the homepage, saying that malware would be installed if I did.... not sure I'd go there for info but the email I found thru google search for their customer service is
harvestland at casupport . com
Think Tyson chicken is antibiotic-free because of language on the label? Ask a Tyson rep what they inject into their eggs before they hatch. Hint: It's an antibiotic. The ionophores added to chicken feed are also antibiotics.
Health Care Disclaimer: Walmart carries (pimps?) one of the biggest and oldest soup companies around, one that all kid's know by name, and one that is smack full of msg. You know the brand? Reps of that company will definitely minimize the effects of MSG if you ask them about it. I encourage you not to settle for the company position on msg but do your own homework, particularly if you have very young children. I have to believe that MSG is added intentionally to soups and children's products to increase consumption of those products by children. As an excitotoxin, MSG excites the taste buds and so children want more of whatever contains it.