Paper on Decoding MSG: A Critical Analysis of Ian Hannon's Expose on Monosodium Glutamate

Published: 2024-01-02
Paper on Decoding MSG: A Critical Analysis of Ian Hannon's Expose on Monosodium Glutamate
Essay type:  Analytical essays
Categories:  Health and Social Care Analysis
Pages: 2
Wordcount: 548 words
5 min read

Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) is an enhanced flavor added to foods though it is a deadly chemical. The document will provide an in-depth writing response to Ian Hannon's 2008 excerpt "MSG is everywhere." The paper will point out three problematic things in his argument and deduce from aspects where his logic does not line up, where his pathos struggles to work, where his sources could be more substantial, where his bias seems to be sneaking, and where his tone lacks control. Moreover, the document concludes by detailing why Hannon is actually a decent student writer as well.

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First, there is a point where Hannon argues on The National Health Place recording rising levels of MSG in foods everywhere despite over three decades of scientists warning of the dangers of ingesting MSG. The logical flow does not line up as Hannon aligns with the idea of manufacturers continuing to add MSG to food to record higher profits for the manufacturers when MSG is added to the food. Expectations are that Hannon could have condemned business ethics' failure, but aligns the argument in supporting the vice by MSG manufacturers. Additionally, Hannon justifies a clever tactic used by the food industry in camouflaging the presence of MSG, keeping the public from identifying the toxic chemical.

Secondly, better and stronger sources could have been applied in supporting the argument that consumption of MSG results in brain damage, and vision loss, and is directly correlated with obesity. In studying the correlation between MSG and obesity in individuals, the scientists used rats for the experiment. It is irrational to test the effects of a dangerous chemical that has been in use for decades on rats in studying MSG and obesity correlation. What would have been appropriate is using a sample of individuals who, in the past, have consistently consumed foods suspected to contain MSG and, instead, used them for the study in line with also observing experiment ethics.

Thirdly, in the excerpt, pathos struggles to work when he mentions, "The number of foods that contain MSG is astounding." Unfortunately, the term "astounding" implies surprisingly impressive or notable. Based on the fact that MSG in food is dangerous and the author is well aware of it when writing the excerpt, it is cruel and ignorant to mind the health of individuals by aligning the argument on foods containing MSG being astounding. Moreover, the author lists foods containing MSG and notes that the amino acid is used as an ingredient in enhancing the natural flavors in virtually every food served in United States restaurants. As readers, expectations were that the author use pathos to evoke pity or sadness from the start.

However, Hannon is a decent student writer as well. The author has encompassed useful writing strategies that make an excerpt stand out, developed and conveyed the main intended ideas appropriately, presented credible arguments, arranged the information chronologically, and properly organized the work in a clear flowing progression of ideas. Moreover, Hannon has appropriately used examples where necessary in supporting his arguments and presenting strong arguments. The author concludes the excerpt with a clear stand in condemning the food industry's unethical vice using MSG. Additionally, he encourages individuals to be cautious and responsible consumers in taking snacks suspected of containing MSG as the chemical comes with deadly risks.

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Paper on Decoding MSG: A Critical Analysis of Ian Hannon's Expose on Monosodium Glutamate. (2024, Jan 02). Retrieved from

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