Redefine CRS: MSG in Chinese food is not harmful

Redefine CRS: MSG in Chinese food is not harmful

Activists have started a campaign ‘Redefine CRS’, MSG in Chinese food is not harmful after all. The MSG present in china salt or the Ajinomoto is safe for consumption even according to the FDA.

For years MSG (Monosodium glutamate) was labeled unhealthy for human consumption even without the support of any scientific evidence.

The ingredient mainly found in Chinese food, after receiving the biased feedback suffered huge setbacks. Many stopped eating Chinese food and many more stopped buying the MSG/ China Salt / Ajinomoto.

This one ingredient surely gave the Chinese food a distinct taste and many may have missed this distinct flavor in their food for quite some time now.

Redefine CRS

This perception is changing now, activist are calling it outdated and racist.

This perception took such a strong impact and was so widespread that the Merriam-Webster dictionary took an entry for the term “Chinese restaurant syndrome”

The term Chinese restaurant syndrome is defined as – a type of condition that allegedly affects people eating “Chinese food heavily seasoned with monosodium glutamate,” with symptoms like dizziness and palpitations.

Japanese food and seasoning company Ajinomoto has launched a campaign called Redefine MSG. This online campaign is urging the Merriam-Webster to change its entry. This change is being demanded to reflect the scientific consensus on MSG. This misinformation has had a negative impact on the perception of Asian cuisine.

Ajinomoto released a video featuring chef and author Eddie Huang, TV personality Jeannie Mai and Dr. Billy Goldberg reacting to the definition of CRS.

Jeannie tweeted

Help me right this wrong. RT to tell @merriamwebster to #RedefineCRS. Get the dish here: #AjinomotoPartner

To which Merriam webster tweeted in response and said

Jeannie, thank you for bringing this to our attention. We’re constantly in the process of updating as usage and attitudes evolve, so we’re grateful when readers can point us toward a definition that needs attention. We will be reviewing the term and revising accordingly.

Video released by Ajinomoto

Eddie Huang also shared the video and tweeted

“Chinese Restaurant Syndrome?” NAH, chill Merriam. Retweet this and ask @merriamwebster to #RedefineCRS. More info here:

Proposed Definition of CRS

The proposed definition of Chinese Restaurant Syndrome is

an outdated term that falsely blamed Chinese food containing MSG, or monosodium glutamate, for a group of symptoms (such as headaches, dizziness, and heart palpitations).


US Food and Drug Administration has called Monosodium glutamate safe to human consumption. FDA has answered some of our questions revolving around it being unhealthy.

What is MSG?

Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is the sodium salt of the common amino acid glutamic acid. Glutamic acid is naturally present in our bodies, and in many foods and food additives.

Is MSG safe to eat?

FDA considers the addition of MSG to foods to be “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS). Although many people identify themselves as sensitive to MSG, in studies with such individuals given MSG or a placebo, scientists have not been able to consistently trigger reactions.

Does “glutamate” in a product mean it contains gluten?

No—glutamate or glutamic acid has nothing to do with gluten. A person with Celiac disease may react to the wheat that may be present in soy sauce, but not to the MSG in the product.

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