This highly controversial white crystalline powder is rapidly increasing in use, particularly in processed foods. The reason for this is simple, it enhances flavors. Processed foods are loaded with salt and spiked with MSG to cover their lack of natural flavor.
First identified in seaweed, glutamate exists in many natural foods,
including mushrooms and some vegetables.
Formerly made from wheat, it is now industrially produced by bacterial
fermentation of carbohydrates, and is celiac safe. It's safety in other
respects has been strongly attacked and just as strongly defended. See
our page MSG & Health.
Diagram by Benrr101 contributed to the public domain.