Growing up in Miami, I learned how to cook foods that consisted of different flavors and tastes and I am so thankful for that. I looooove me some latin food and love me some Sazon. But to my friends and family… I hate to break it to you guys, but Abuela didn’t cook with Sazon Completa. She probably didn’t use Goya, Adobo or Badilla spices from a bottle, and what I’m about to share with you might make you not want to either.
Just to keep things simple, MSG in seasoning is BAD. Real bad. It can cause serious neurological damage to adults, children and even unborn babies. For years food companies have been hiding it in more foods than you can imagine, under other msg names and sometimes its even listed right there on the label. But you’ll never know unless you check.
After a meal containing MSG some people can experience mild symptoms of:
- Stomach cramps
- Runny or stuffy nose,
- Itchiness of the skin
- Itchy and Watery Eyes
- Hives or reddish bumps
- Swelling of the mouth or itchy throat
Like Pringles…Remember their old TV commercials? Once you pop you cant stop? Well they were somewhat honest in their ads, they just didn’t tell you why you can’t stop.
When I first learned about these hidden ingredients, I immediately went into my kitchen and checked to see if I had any food with this stuff in it. The first cabinet I opened happened to be my spice cabinet. I was mortified.
Every single bottle (not exaggerating) I had in there had some kind of MSG in it. Not even one type of msg free spices. Some actually even listed the words Monosodium glutamate. The main culprit in my cabinet… you guessed it, my two beloved seasonings, Sazon Completa and Sazon Goya. Why was this a problem? Well to start it can potentially cause:
- Seizures, Strokes and Heart Attacks
- Abnormal neural development
- Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease
MSG Free SpicesMost of us work full time, and it seems so much easier to buy a bottle of Sazon completa to season your meals. But like I said earlier, Abuela didn’t do that, and you shouldn’t either. In fact, she probably did it the best natural way using MSG free spices and made un Sofrito ( a mix of tomatoes, onions, peppers, garlic, and herbs.) and now that’s what we do.
So if now you don’t know what the heck to use without your beloved Adobo…here’s some ideas for natural spices to cook with. We season our food with herbs like chopped onions, garlic, oregano, rosemary, thyme, dill and more. We also use fresh ground spices like turmeric, paprika, Himalayan sea salt, cayenne pepper, and so many others. You can buy fresh herbs in the supermarket and spices that are not pre-mixed (meaning they contain only one ingredient). Just be sure to read the label to make sure there are no added preservatives. See my post on neurotoxins in old herbs and spices and why you don’t need your spices to be preserved. Trust me, its worth it to keep buying fresh ones.
Besides if you read the labels on most of the seasoning mixes you have in your cabinet right now, they are simply dried/powdered versions of the same onion, garlic and the herbs I listed above. (They just add preservatives and MSG…yum!)
MSG Seasoning SubstituteHere’s how you can make your own version of the little orange packets of Sazon Goya:
1 Tbs Ground Cumin
1 Tbs Oregano
1 Tbs Paprika
3 Cloves Chopped Garlic
1 Tbs Coriander (or 1/4 cup Fresh Cilantro)
1 Tbs pink Salt (Himalaya or Celtic Sea Salt is best)
1 Tsp Turmeric (Optional But super good for you)
Are you thinking… no way I have time to chop up all those vegetables and herbs! I promise with the right tools , you’ll find it not only to be quick and easy but your food will taste much more flavorful. And MORE importantly, Abuela would be proud!
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