Good morning readers. Thanks for coming by for a read this morning.
Socorro, New Mexico, isn’t long on good restaurants. But during the several years I lived there, I had a favorite restaurant, and a favorite menu item. The place was owned and operated by an elderly Chinese man with whom I was on friendly, bantering terms.
This lasted until the discovery that MSG in food causes my blood pressure to skyrocket. A few times per week I’d sit myself down, they’d bring the usual, and a couple of hours later my pulse would be visible almost anywhere a blood vessel showed. This was accompanied by a pounding in my head, maybe audible, maybe only seemingly so.
After I figured out the connection between my favorite food item and the blood pressure problem I attempted to discuss it with the owner, though we had a language barrier. The result was an outburst of anger and indignation. I didn’t know yet the MSG was the cause. Just that particular menu item.
I solved the problem by eating elsewhere, but eventually learned that Chinese restaurants, particularly, lean heavily on adding MSG to their foods, and that a surprisingly large number of people have reactions to it similar to mine.
I also began watching the labels on food I bought to prepare at home. What I discovered was that a person sensitive to MSG had best carry a magnifying glass in his pocket and read those labels carefully. Almost everything a person might buy in a can is loaded with it, but especially soups and soup-bases. If a label slips past and gets inside the vehicle it notifies the owner by the rods knocking.
But I was going to say, I love oriental food, and I was in town yesterday, so I clenched my teeth and decided it was a day for risk-taking. There’s an Oriental buffet I’d never tried, so I pulled in. I tried asking whether they had MSG in their food, but it was clear she didn’t understand me. So I went root hog or die.
The food was mediocre, but I didn’t die. I took a couple of extra blood pressure pills when the pounding in my head started, and by the time I got home my blood pressure was so low I didn’t have any business being alive.
I found myself wondering why the FDA cops who faint and revive themselves over one-in-a-billion risks to human health otherwise haven’t jumped on this like ugly on a monkey.
Today on Ask Old Jules:
Old Jules, does any time in history correspond to what’s going on within the US today?