Food & Drink

July 30, 2013 12:00 AM

Has MSG gotten a bad rap?

MSG has long been the food world’s bad boy. Also known as monosodium glutamate, it has been demonized for at least two generations by food purists convinced it dumbs down flavor and quality, and by habitues of Asian restaurants, worried they'll fall victim to “Chinese restaurant syndrome,” the onset of headaches, nausea or other symptoms often blamed on eating foods thought to be high in MSG. (That explains all those “No MSG” signs you see; whether that’s always true is another story.)

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