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MSG and panic attacks?
I have went over a week with no panic attacks or even more than mild anxiety, which is a miracle for me.  However, last week we had Chinese food for dinner and within a few hours of eating it, I became very shaky, anxious feeling, panicky for several hours after and the day after.  Now tonight, we had Chinese food again, and again, I am having the same feeling.  
I have read that the MSG in some Chinese foods can cause anxiety and symptoms such as this (I didn't look or ask if they used MSG in their food, but never really thought about it).  
I am starting to wonder if somehow this food could be linked to some of my problems.  We eat Chinese food at least once a week (out of the house...I make it at home as well and never have a problem with it then) and I have noticed that I always have stomach problems after eating it (I even get different things, but always have the stomach issues) and now that I'm thinking about it, I usually do feel pretty shaky and weird afterward.  Any thoughts other than I should avoid this food (which I obviously will do for the time being)??
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Did you search google?  Anyway, my doctor said that spicy foods, caffeine, chocolates cause jitteriness and for you that may translate to anxiety.  Bottom line... you prob need to only eat home cooked Chinese food which won't have the things that are prob bothering you.
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I agree with master that certain foods can cause one's anxiety to increase.  Also, in my opinion, sometimes we can associate something with anxiety in a mental way as well. You may have just been anxious that day and now associate chinese food with your anxiety.  However, if it does bother you, you can cut out foods with MSG.  Keep us posted!
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366811 tn?1217426272
Good old MSG (monosodium glutamate) is a staple of oriental cusine. It is sold as "Accent" in the supermarket and also is available as a "generic." If you google it, you will have the usual TMI experience, but here's my condensed version. Think "highly reactive salt." It makes food tastier because it stimulates your taste buds. But it can also be a mischief maker in your gullet and many people have problems with it. In the case of Chinese food, you also have soy or soya-based flavorings and sauces invloved; where would General Tso's chicken be without it? In other words, tons and tons of SALT. And on top of that there are also often hot peppers strewn around -a zesty meal, indeed. After I have a meal, I lie in bed at night feeling my heart pounding like an out of control, on-rushing freight train. And trains, as you know, are a big deal for me. I don't panic anymore -but I should! And I DO love the meals!

Take enough table salt and you'll get the shakes, too. Your body absorbs it el quicko and adjusts fluid levels accordingly. So, between MSG, the regular salt in the ingredients and that nasty little pepper buried in the brown sauce, you've got a real challenge. But you can tell the restaurant NOT to use MSG -and they won't.

Get the chicken Lo Mein with no MSG, Kat, and drinks lotsa water before, during and after. You'll be purring.
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Hi after having panic attacks and anxiety I got put on Effexor XR which helped a little I've on Effexor now for 4 years.  Anyway about a year after I was put on this med I found out I have Celiac Spru which one of the things I can't have is MSG and it is in alot of things and not just Chinese food and it can cause alot of problems and there are alot of Chinese places that do not use MSG because of the side effects try taking  MSG out of your diet completely you will be surprised.

Deb
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366811 tn?1217426272
Just kidding. It is true, MSG is EVERYWHERE. And here is something ELSE you should be aware of. Labeling requirements make it mandatory to list MSG among ther ingredients if it is there. It is frequently spelled out: "monosodium glutamate."

But there's a "gotcha," sometimes. Some food manufacturers will list, "other spices and flavorings," referring, sometimes, to spice packages that THEY bought from someone else and plunked into their product, "Grandma's Fried Rattlesnake Snacks" or whatever. As it happens, whatever they got from somewhere else may well have included the MSG, but it didn't get listed separately. That's against the rules -not supposed to happen. But it DOES happen, sometimes. And so, if you are reacting like there is MSG there -it may well BE there, even if it is not shown on the label. In general, but not always, and with notable exceptions, MSG is used in foods you might expect to taste salty. But that doesn't mean just chips and salsa. It can also mean -get this- chocolate sauce, because it is SALT which makes sugar taste, well, sweeter, in certain recipes.

Go figure. Carefully.

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I only just figured out that some of my attacks have been linked to nights when we have Chinese food...so I don't think I'm psyching myself out, although that has been known to happen too!  I just realized it last night, about 2 hours after I had the food, I all of a sudden started shaking and sweating, feeling dizzy, and having the usual stomach problems I always get when I eat that food.  Then, of course, feeling like that is what triggers the panic attack because then I start thinking something is wrong.  I just realized today that after eating those foods (including most fast foods)I always get like this, get pretty yucky feeling, and always have a headache the next day.  I drank a lot of water last night, hoping it would help, and after a few hours felt better.  My doctor thought at one point that I may have celiac because of the stomach problems I have and the foods that seem to trigger the stomach issues, but never did do any testing for that...it was just something she told me I should avoid, and I do believe that MSG was on the list of no-no's!
I have come to the conclusion that I should just cut it out as much as possible and see what happens...or at least make sure that if I do eat it, I'm drinking a lot that day.  I am not too good about my fluid intake, so that may be a contributing factor when I flood my bod with all that sodium.  UGH.  To think...I won't even let my kids eat Spaghettio's because of the sodium content, yet I'll do it to myself.  
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Hi there,
Just found this site . I have had two really bad panic attacks within the past two weeks. I have been trying to do my my detective work and it does seem that both nights I had just eaten Chinese food a couple of hours before. I felt a sudden rush of weirdness, had trouble breathing , felt very shaky like my legs were going out from under me ., heart racing . I am going to be very careful about Chinese food in the future. It's a shame I do love it. So I guess I will be making mine at home from now on. Well I guess it's a good thing that I do do enjoy cooking !
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Anxiety and panic attacks are a mental thing. An attack can simply occur when, where and what you were doing at the time of a previous attack. As my doctor said, the best medication, in this case, is no medication if you can train yourself to handle it. And if one attack begins, walk, do not breathe through your chest. Walking will help this. Inhale through nose as calmly as possible and when you exhale, hum for as long as you can and repeat. Panic attacks occur when carbon dioxide and oxygen levels are out of balance. An EMT will tell you to do this if you call an ambulance in which I did in one severe case. Drugs will help, but it will NOT be the solution to cure it. It is tough and simply said, but train your brain and yourself to overcome. To be on the safe side get an EKG performed to rule out that it may be a heart issue. Be strong!!
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Wow Kat03,

Your original post sounds like it could have been written by ME very recently.  I've eat like crap the past few years, and MSG (or lots of it in a meal such as Chinese food) does the saaaaaaame thing to me.  I'd eat Chinese, watch TV for an hour, then take a nap.  I'd wake up out of the nap dizzy, nauseated, nervous and sweating.  I'd just "discovered" a couple weeks ago how it has been MSG that's done this to me.  And since then I've dramatically altered my diet, reducing my salt, MSG and cutting out Aspartame. MSG is really hard to avoid since it's in almost everything packaged and like someone has already mentioned, it's disguised in the foods under different names.  Now given, I already have anxiety issues, but MSG makes them worse and triggers them.  Everything people are saying on here is good advice.  Lots of smart people here.  
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Hi there I'm glad I'm not the only one who has stomach problems when I get anxiety I to have noticed that I have the same issue but with me it's Pepsi but here is the kicker I normally drink coke I'm aware that Pepsi has twice as much caffeine than coke and to top that with the msg at the Chinese restaurant I'm glad I found those site
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