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Monosodium glutamate is related to a higher increase in blood pressure over 5 years: findings from the Jiangsu Nutrition Study of Chinese adults

Shi, Zumina,b,c; Yuan, Baojuna; Taylor, Anne Wb,c; Dai, Yuea; Pan, Xiaoquna; Gill, Tiffany Kc; Wittert, Gary Ac

Journal of Hypertension:
doi: 10.1097/HJH.0b013e328344da8e
Original papers: Epidemiology

Objective: One large cross-sectional study across four countries suggests that glutamate intake may be inversely associated with blood pressure (BP). The aim of this analysis was to investigate a possible association between monosodium glutamate (MSG) intake and change in blood pressure over 5 years.

Methods: Data from 1227 Chinese men and women who participated in the Jiangsu Nutrition Study (JIN) were analyzed. In this study, MSG intake and blood pressure were quantitatively assessed in 2002, and followed-up in 2007.

Results: MSG intake was associated with a significant increase in SBP and DBP. A strong sex interaction was observed in relation to SBP change. Women with high MSG intake were more likely to have increased SBP and DBP. Total glutamate intake was also positively associated with an increase in SBP. In those chronically taking antihypertensive medications, there was a strong association between MSG intake and an increase in DBP.

Conclusion: MSG intake may have independent BP-increasing effects, especially among women and those taking hypertension medications at baseline and follow-up.

Author Information

aDepartment of Nutrition and Foodborne Disease Prevention, Jiangsu Provincial Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, Nanjing, China

bPopulation Research and Outcome Studies Unit, Department of Health, Australia

cDiscipline of Medicine, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia

Received 14 October, 2010

Revised 10 January, 2011

Accepted 20 January, 2011

Correspondence to Dr Zumin Shi, Department of Nutrition and Foodborne Disease Prevention, Jiangsu Provincial Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, 172 Jiangsu Road, Nanjing 210009, China Tel: +61 8 8313 1188; fax: +61 8 8313 1228; e-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.