I feel like I need to include every sort of disclaimer here because these foods are not perfect and I am sure many will find reasons to criticize them. However, I will absolutely admit how hard it can be to switch your family to a whole food based diet when coming from the standard American diet. While theses foods are not ideal and can be very inflammatory due to poor quality oils, sugar, non-organic, high in x,y,z etc. they may help reduce free glutamate exposure or are slightly cleaner options when switching to a whole food diet. Strictly avoiding processed sources of free glutamate has been essential to our health, especially our son’s neurological health. Please keep in mind that many of these foods can also feed underlying pathogens which can additionally create a surge in glutamate. The following items have been linked via Amazon and/or Thrive Market affiliate accounts where I may earn a commission from. Products may need to be sourced based on availability and/or pricing.
99% of condiments we use with our son are homemade. However, I have found some that are relatively cleaner for my husband and any of our guests…
Eden Organic Brown Mustard: We have not used this with our son. However, apple cider vinegar is the least offensive form of vinegars. We can source these at our local Whole Foods
Amazon link for Eden Organic Brown Mustard
Eden Organic Yellow Mustard: We have not used this with our son. However, apple cider vinegar is the least offensive form of vinegars. We can source these at our local Whole Foods
Amazon link for Eden Organic Yellow Mustard
Sir Kensington’s Classic Ketchup- THIS ITEM IS NOT LOW GLUTAMATE, WE DO NOT GIVE IT TO OUR SON. However, it is relatively cleaner than some of the other processed options and I keep it on hand for my husband and guests.
Amazon link for Sir Kensington’s Classic Ketchup
Vinegars, Wine & Alcohol
Vinegar sensitivities are typically related to what the vinegar is made from. There are different ways vinegar is made, but in its most basic form, vinegar is acetic acid that is made from alcohol which, in turn, is made from sugars. Many times, the ingredients used to make vinegar are things like rice, wheat or corn, which naturally contain protein. The higher the protein content, the higher the level of free glutamate will be found in the final product. Apple cider vinegar is different though. Apples have the least amount of protein of any food that is made into vinegar, therefore apple cider vinegar would likely have the least amount of free glutamate out of all the types of vinegars on the market. If you aren’t sure how or what a vinegar is made from, it’s a safe bet that it’s made from corn or wheat and can contain glutamate as a contaminant.
The same process occurs in the fermentation of alcohol. Potato vodka preferred over other types of alcohol because of the lower glutamate content as opposed to alcohols made from corn or grains. Caution needs to be used with wine due to possible additives, colorings and flavors that are not mandated to be listed on packaging. For those highly sensitive to glutamate you will want to avoid consuming or cooking with alcohol, wine or vinegar. Small amounts of potato vodka or apple cider vinegar may be the exception. A reaction to these will be based on individual sensitivity.
Through Dr. Reid we’ve discovered that the FDA code of regulations has specific requirements for the “spice” or “spices” label. Using the term “spices” allows manufacturers to protect their proprietary blends without revealing trade secrets. Use of this term also allows for free glutamate to be hidden in products. Not all spice manufacturing processes are created equal. For example, powdered foods and additives often contain additional stabilizing, sulfating, and/or anticaking substances, and all of these can be called “spices” on an ingredient label. Free glutamate is very often a result of many of these manufacturing processes. We have reacted to foods containing “spice”, so we only purchases foods where the ingredients are specifically called out. For example, organic basil, organic oregano, etc.
The same is true for the term ‘powder’. Like, “spices”, often fillers and anti-caking agents are allowed as ingredient but not required to be labeled under that term. The powder process also sometimes involves high pressure, heat or hydrolysis conditions that can create free glutamate in the process. We specifically, look for the term ‘ground’ or ‘granules’ for a safer and cleaner option. Fresh herbs/spices are always the safest and most potent for therapeutic properties. Do not forget to read ingredients on spice blends for hidden sources of MSG.
Salt– we also only use Himalayan or sea salt to lower our glutamate risk.
The Spicely brand is by-far my favorite!! We love Spicely because they are organic, gluten free, no peanuts, no soybeans, no milk, no eggs, no fish, no sugar, no truants, no artificial color, no preservatives, no artificial sweeteners, no citric acid, no corn starch, no potato flour, no salt, no hydrogenated oil, no fillers and less risk with “powders”. Their products are produced only from whole herbs and spices. We can source them at our local Whole Foods. Here are just a few of our favorites they have many, many more available …
Organic GF Garlic Granules
Amazon link for Spicely GF Garlic Granules
Organic GF Black Pepper
Amazon link for Spicely GF Black Pepper
Organic GF Onion Granules
Amazon link for Spicely GF Onion Granules
Organic GF Herbs De Provence
Amazon link for Spicely GF Hebs De Provence
Organic GF Cinnamon
Amazon link to Spicely GF Cinnamon
Organic GF Thyme
Amazon link for Spicely GF Thyme
Organic GF Oregano
Amazon link for Spicely GF Oregano
Organic GF Ground Cumin
Amazon link for Spicely GF Ground Cumin
Ground Mustard Seed
Amazon link for Spicely GF Ground Mustard Seed
Amazon Link for Spicely GF Ground Paprika
Amazon link for Spicely GF Rosemary