T Nation

Whey Protein=MSG?

Well, to clarify:

Proteins are composed of amino acids linked to each other in a long chain.

In digestion, the long chains are broken into smaller chains, mostly units of 2 or 3 linked amino acids, called dipeptides or tripeptides.

Glutamine and glutamic acid are among the amino acids found in proteins.

They are not present as isolated amino acids, but only within these chains.

When labels of protein products list amino acid content,

  1. Actually the named amino acid does not (unless it’s been added separately) exist on its own in the product, but only as part of the chain.

  2. Because the method of analysis that is commonly used converts glutamine to glutamic acid, there is no way to tell from the analysis how much glutamine was present. So there is no listing for glutamine, and the listing for glutamic acid is high, because it really includes the glutamine as well.

#2 is a side note.

#1 is the reason why glutamic acid (which when dissolved in water will give the same thing as happens when glutamate is dissolved in water) is a totally different thing in protein powder than in MSG.

It is incorporated into protein chains and is principally not absorbed as glutamate, but as part of small chains such as di or tripeptides.

The person making the claim that whey protein is high in glutamate and using whey protein is equivalent to taking a huge amount of MSG did not understand these facts, but instead read the label literally and though that there was that much free glutamic acid in the product, when in fact there is none.

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
I said that there is no glutamate at all in there.

Also no MSG.[/quote]

Thank you.

Bill, thanks for the info.