Sodium in MSG vs. salt

I’m on a low-sodium diet. Someone suggested that I substitute MSG for salt. But MSG is monoSODIUM glutamate. So does it have the same amount of sodium as NaCl, or less?

Regular salt is NaCl, so the sodium content by weight is 23/(23+35.5)=39%.

MSG is C5H8NO4Na, so the sodium content is 23/(12x5+1x8+14+16x4+23)=14%.

Plus, generally speaking, I believe it’s typical to use a lot less MSG than one would salt.

Yeah, when cooking with MSG, I’m guessing I use around 1/4 by volume MSG as salt.

Here’s a study on the effectiveness of MSG as a sodium-reduction measure. From the conclusion:

Thanks so much for this. It’s a big help.

Be aware that Ajinomoto, the most common MSG manufacturer has Ajinomoto, MSG only and Ajishio, MSG combined with salt. We used to get gift boxes at Christmas with both and a few times my Mom used Ajishio when we ran out of Ajinomoto. Salt bomb!

Glad it’s useful!

That’s true in the case of foods that are very flavorful, like… you know… pork rind.