Did you know that 46% of consumers want to eat healthier, making this the most highly-ranked lifestyle change?
If you've had the same thought as most consumers, you might be taking a deep dive into common ingredients in foods. MSG, which can be a harmful food additive, is in a lot of foods we eat, especially instant noodle soup.
What if it was possible to eat pre-packaged noodles without the bad ingredients? There's a way! Keep reading to learn more.
What Are Instant Noodles?
Instant noodles are pre-cooked noodles typically sold in individual cups or packages. Generally, the ingredients for instant noodles include:
- Palm oil
In the flavoring packets, the ingredients, more often than not, are salt, seasoning, and monosodium glutamate (MSG). If you eat the noodles without using the flavoring packet, your meal won't consume MSG.
What Is MSG?
MSG, short for monosodium glutamate, is a flavor enhancer that most instant noodles include. MSG is derived from L-glutamic acid, which is present in a lot of foods.
MSG is an odorless, white, crystalline powder used as a food additive.
MSG is known as a flavor enhancer mainly from its umami taste. The umami flavor makes your mouth water, improving the taste of the food you are eating.
Why Does MSG Get a Bad Reputation?
In the 1960s, Chinese-American doctor, Robert Ho Man Kwok, believed he was feeling sick after eating Chinese food because of MSG. This sparked a lot of misinformation about MSG that people still believe today.
Many studies went on to back the bad reputation of MSG, but the evidence is questionable considering there were methodological flaws and a lack of adequate control groups.
Health authorities like the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) consider MSG to be generally recognized as safe (GRAS). Of course, if you consume too much MSG, it's going to have a negative impact on your health.
Along with prepackaged noodles, other common foods that contain MSG include:
- Animal-based proteins
- Sauces and dressing
- Processed meats
MSG is more present in the food we eat than people realize.
Instant Noodles Are High in Sodium
A single serving of instant noodles contains more than 800 mg of sodium. If you eat an entire package, the amount of sodium you consume is much higher.
It's no secret that a high sodium intake can have a negative impact on certain individuals. If you don't eat a balanced diet, you could be more susceptible to the effects of sodium, such as an increase in blood pressure.
Contrary to popular belief, instant noodles aren't high in sodium because of MSG. MSG contains less sodium than table salt and can be used as a tool to reduce sodium intake.
MSG provides more flavor than table salt without the added sodium.
How to Avoid MSG
If you want to eat healthier overall or if you are sensitive to MSG, you can avoid it as much as possible.
Avoiding monosodium glutamate means being mindful of what you consume. Check ingredient lists on food labels. Ask restaurants about their ingredients before you order something from the menu.
The FDA requires that manufacturers list MSG as an ingredient if it was used to make something. Additionally, it's important to know that MSG naturally occurs in these ingredients:
- Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
- Autolyzed yeast
- Hydrolyzed yeast
- Soy extract
- Yeast extract
- Protein isolate
Because MSG is added to so many foods, it can be difficult to avoid it completely. Cutting back on packaged and processed foods is a great way to reduce exposure.
Are Instant Noodles Always Unhealthy?
If you enjoy instant noodle soup, you aren't completely out of luck. There are ways to make cup noodles healthier and there are instant noodles without MSG available.
You can always look at the food label of instant noodles to tell whether or not it contains MSG.
To make healthier choices, you can also choose instant noodles made from whole grains to increase fiber content and make you feel fuller. Lower-sodium instant noodles can bring down your sodium intake.
If you want to add more protein and vegetables to your meal, do it! Use instant noodles as a base and top them with fresher and healthier ingredients you likely have at home.
Toss in a good source of protein and your favorite vegetable to create a more well-rounded dish and enhance your nutrition profile.
Are Healthy Instant Noodles Tasty?
We know what you are thinking, "will healthier instant noodles taste just as good as the real thing?" There are brands that have perfected the taste of instant noodles without adding unnecessary sodium and MSG.
For example, OhSo Tasty has a variety of instant noodle products and flavors while being healthy. What does this mean exactly? With these noodles, you'll experience these health benefits:
- Low carb
- No MSG
- Vegetarian and Vegan
This means that you no longer have to avoid instant noodles as they can be a nutritional piece to your diet. Plus, who doesn't love the convenience of pre-made noodles that require no effort to make?
This healthy instant noodle soup comes in these amazing flavors:
- VaVa Veggie
- Sizzlin' Sesame
- Miso Delicious
- Kickin' Katsu
- Flamin' Tomato
- Soy Satisfying
You can shop OhSo Tasty products as single packs or variety packs.
Love Instant Noodle Soup?
If you love instant noodle soup, we hope this article brought you some comfort.
Although a lot of instant noodles on the market contain high sodium and MSG, there are healthier options that taste just as yummy. If you want to avoid MSG, or just consume it in moderation, you can!
Try OhSo Tasty healthy instant noodle soups, and discover where to buy these products today!