All posts by sustainableamilla

Love the world, sustain the world

MSG – Ajinomoto my any other name.

Mono Sodium Glutamate has many different names. Originally developed in Japan and made with seaweed it is now made in commercial from fermenting sugars. This doesn’t sound too unhealthy right?

Well much research has been done on this food additive and none of the outcomes are good.

Here are some facts of what this does in our systems;

• As early as the 1970’s researchers found that MSG kills brain cells

• It acts as a nerve stimulant and will change how we taste food. Basically even food could normally taste bad would taste good. Think old food or food that is not good for you.

• For those sensitive to MSG it can cause headaches, muscle tightness, tiredness, tingling, itching and weakness.

• It can trigger asthma attacks.

• There are many studies that now link MSG to obesity and weight gain.

I am not sure about you but I don’t think any of this sounds good.

Unfortunately with regulations in many countries either banning MSG or enforcing that products must be labels, those folk in white coats in laboratories have found ways to change the name slightly to get round these laws which means that MSG is now hiding in virtually all processed foods under names such as; Glutamate, Maltodextrin, Malt extract, Yeast Extract (food, nutrient), anything Hydrolysed, Soy protein and Whey protein.

Yes that’s right those “healthy” protein powders also come with a side of MSG!

MSG is commonly found in prepared sauces and ingredients such as;

• Oyster Sauce

• Fish Sauce

• Hoisin Sauce

• Cheap soy sauces

• Curry pastes

• Chicken powder or stock powder

• Cup/two minute noodle flavour packets

Oh no, what can we eat you ask? The answer lies in eating whole foods. Choosing homemade sauces not out of a bottle. Basically try not to eat anything out of a wrapper and keep all those brain cells intact!

What Can a Coconut Be?

What a strange question to ask but it is worth thinking about.

We all know that the coconut tree is the tree of life and I am sure that you know that all parts of the coconut tree are useable. But as we clean up Amilla, our island home, we have all seen that we are very fortunate to have an island that is so rich in these life giving plants.

However as we have seen the vast piles of dried coconuts, palm fronds and other parts of the tree that fall (or are cut by our brave coconut guys) it has made me wonder what can we do with these? Why pay to send them off our island?

So I set to research and here are some interesting uses I have found;

• Wood chips – cutting up the husks we can create wood chips, maybe to use for path ways.

• Coir – coconut coir has for many years been used to create rope for use in boating. It is water resistant so last well around water. It is also used to make doors mats and other household items. Did you know that it is also widely used for making mattresses?

• Coco peat – this can be mixed in with compost for gardens. It is very absorbent and holds water during the dry season. It can also be used for growing vegetables with hydroponics.

• The fibre can also be used for growing mushrooms!

• Shells – the beautiful shells can be used to make many items for round the home such as bowls, spoons and jewellery.

• Trunks – while we wouldn’t cut down a coconut tree, they do sometime fall naturally. The trunks can be used to make all number of items such as furniture and the like.

As we move sustainability into the light here at Amilla we would love your ideas on ways that we could use out bounty of coconuts. Please comment below with your brilliant ideas.