Disodium inosinate, a flavor enhancer, can tantalize your taste buds but its addition can have some bothersome side effects such as headache, gastric discomfort, and flushed skin.
Did You Know?
Due to its possible side effects, disodium inosinate is not added in foods that are formulated for infants.
Be it canned foods such as tuna, instant noodles, or packaged soups, they tend to have a unique salty flavor, which is often due to disodium inosinate, a flavor enhancer. Disodium inosinate is often used in combination with other food additives such as disodium guanylate and monosodium glutamate (MSG).
Disodium inosinate, commonly added in fast foods, is essentially a disodium salt of inosinic acid that makes the dish more flavorful. Although it adds a dash of zing to the flavor, disodium inosinate can have a few side effects, particularly in people who are sensitive to this flavor enhancer.
Flushing as we know, is due to dilation of blood vessels and it causes increased blood circulation. The tremendous increase in blood flow makes the skin appear red. Disodium inosinate can have a direct impact on the blood vessels, causing them to widen, which results in flushed skin. Disodium inosinate tends to mimic the action of glutamate, a neurotransmitter that is known to dilate blood vessels.
One may experience severe headaches, every time after taking foods containing disodium inosinate. There have been reports of migraine in people using this food additive. Headaches resulting from consumption of food additives can be nasty and may not subside until the trigger is eliminated from the diet.
Eating foods containing disodium inosinate can lead to excessive sweating. Also referred to as hyperhidrosis, this may occur due to sweat glands becoming overactive.
People sensitive to this food additive may experience a burning sensation around the mouth area. Sometimes this sensation may spread to other facial areas as well.
The feeling of numbness around the mouth and across the chest can also occur as a side effect of disodium inosinate. One may also complain about chest discomfort or tightness after having this food additive.
Intolerance to foods that have disodium inosinate added, may trigger an itchy sensation, followed by the formation of rash. Having these foodstuffs on a regular basis can cause a chronic itchy rash. The skin can itch terribly, so much that medical intervention may be needed. In rare cases, a severe itchy rash may be accompanied by swelling of the lips, tongue, and throat, which requires urgent medical attention.
Disodium inosinate may impart a savory flavor to the food but post meals, one may experience gastric discomfort that can manifest in the form of upper abdominal pain followed by bloating, nausea, and belching.
Worsening of Gout Symptoms
People suffering from gout, an inflammatory joint condition, should avoid eating foods containing this flavor enhancer. This is because, disodium inosinate is essentially a purine, a compound present in animal proteins and metabolized into uric acid in the body. Excess uric acid can increase the gout risk as well as worsen the symptoms of this joint problem. So, high-purine foods are a strict no-no for gout patients.
Although the food additive has been given the GRAS label, that doesn’t mean it is permitted for indiscriminate use. So, you may have a liking for fast foods but make sure you eat them in moderation. In fact, avoiding processed foods and opting for fresh vegetables and organic meat can go a long way in minimizing the health risk associated with disodium inosinate.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.