Monday, February 1, 2010

Monday Moments - PF Changs...why do you hurt me so?

I love Chinese food, I really do. That's why PF Changs has always been one of my favorite restaurants. But for some reason I can't eat their anymore. About 4 years ago I ate there and got really sick. I thought it was just a one time thing, maybe I got something bad. But every time I've tried to eat there since, I get sick. It starts about an hour after I eat. I'm doubled over with stomach pain, then a hammer pounding head ache. They both last for hours. I wish I knew what it was.

I don't mean for this post to be a negative post about PF Changs. I think their food is delicious and everyone in my family loves it and it doesn't make anyone else sick. In fact most everyone I know loves PF Changs. But for some reason, my body won't tolerate it.

This is such a phenomenon to me! Nothing ever makes me sick. I have literally traveled the world eating food from all walks of life. I have eaten in some of the scariest dives and/or hole-in-the-wall "is this really a restaurant?" kind of places. I have never gotten sick. In fact, on our 2 week family vacation to China, I was the only one that didn't get sick the entire 2 weeks. And there were days that I wasn't sure what species of food I was eating. On a side note...McDonalds never tasted so good as it did in China!!

So here's my question...Does anyone else get sick from PF Changs? Or does anyone out there have any idea's what PF Changs might use in there food that would be making me so sick? I even tried eating at Pei Wei this weekend, and it made me sick as well. I know it's not MSG. PF Changs doesn't use MSG and I eat MSG all the time and it never makes me sick. So, if anyone has any thoughts I'd love to hear them.

Jake eating a chicken head in China! I didn't try that, maybe that's why I didn't get sick?
Just for fun...my family, or part of my family, on the Great Wall of China!


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70 comments:

Heather said...

I have that same phenom with a place in Prescott, AZ, that is where I am from. My family loved this place and I did too. Oh the goat cheese spread with crackers, but I throw up everytime I eat there.

Frieda said...

Not sure, but could it be the oil?

pam said...

Shawn and I have both gotten sick the last few times we have eaten there. It's really weird. I don't know why either. We ate there for a long time before getting sick. We LOVE their food so much and I have actually been craving it lately. Sigh. I think I'll give it another try before giving it up completely. (It's just too yummy to not try again, right?!)

Anonymous said...

i can relate in some ways... i get extremely dehydrated.... i LOVE it.... but for the next 24 hours i am drinking massive amounts of water.. lmao... so i feel your pain.. good blog...

Anonymous said...

I get major indegestion and blotation after eating, this is the 2nd time, not going again, it maybe the oil?

melreneek said...

Wheh! I thought I was the only one... it is so bad for me, that I get sick before we even leave the restaurant every time. So obviously I don't eat there anymore despite how delicious it tastes for the 20 minutes before I get violently ill. I had the exact same reaction in New Orleans at Cafe Du Monde while eating beignets. I found out they cook their beignets in cottonseed oil, so I wonder if PF Changs and Pei Wei do the same...

Stewart said...

Yea, me too! Glad I'm not the only one too. I've only eaten at PF Changs 4 times in 4 different cities and on 3 of the 4 I've gotten sick with sever cramping. After the ole stomach is empty, I'm a new person. Then there is today. The fifth time. Hadn't been there to eat for well over a year. Thought I would give it another try but for lunch with co-workers instead of dinner. Guess what, sick again. Still sick as I type and searching the internet for answers. It has to be a spice, oil or seasoning like MSG that I'm sensitive to or allergic to. Needless to say, I will never eat there again. This is the only restaurant chain I have ever eaten at that makes me sick.

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I'm not alone. My wife and used to eat there all the time but about 3 years ago every time I eat there I get immediately sick and i'm on the toilet until I am empty. There must be something going on here. Tonight I am now 3 for 3 and have vowed never to eat there again. WTF happened what did they change?

Anonymous said...

Hi! I just found this blog (nice site) searching for answers. I ate at PF Changs last night and this morning I threw up. This is the third or fourth time this has happened over the past couple of years. For this reason I've stayed away but thought I would give it another try last night. My symptoms (vomiting) are different from those described here. Wouldn't mind some answers. Keep up the nice blog. I will be following from now on! Lori

Anonymous said...

Restaurants like Changs use crazy amounts of MSG (monosodium glutamate) and it makes lots of people sick. The telltale sign is the pounding headache...plus tummy troubles! Restaurants do it to amp up the flavor of their food cheaply rather than use better-quality ingredients or better cooking technique. I hope that all of the people posting here lets Changs know it has made them sick-- it's only through customer complaints that restaurants will change their ways :) PF Changs has never made me sick but the last time I ate at Noodle Co. I was hit with my worst headache ever as I was walking out their door, which lasted all night. I am sure MSG was to blame...
Carolyn

Anonymous said...

I was actually searching for some feedback on this and I am so glad I'm not the only one with this issue. Everytime I eat at PF Chang I get severe diahrrea. Why?

Anonymous said...

Five of my family members went to P.F. Chang's Friday night for a birthday and every one of us got terrible stomach pain, bloating and running to the bathroom afterward. We all had different entrees so it is definitely something in every dish. I kept tasting the oil for 24 hours after eating there. This was our first and last time at Chang's!

Francesca said...

Wow I too am relieved I am not the only one who gets indegestion from eating at P.F. Chang & Pei Wei's.... I thought it was the fried rice so I did not eat any last night and just order my other two favorites the chicken lettuce wraps and honey chicken. I can't help but wonder what dish everyone else here orders and if its the same thing that is making us so ill... I did try the egg rolls for the first time last night also. Well maybe if we are able to figure out the what's causing this P.F. Chang will offer a sensitive menu for us who love P.F. Chang but P.F. Chang doesn't love us back.

Maurpher said...

Just ate at Changs today. This was the 4th time I’ve been there and every time I has eaten there I have experienced these following symptoms. That being headache, eye nerve spasms, dehydration, and the feeling of a brick in my stomach. So that you know, I do have celiac disease (gluten allergy), so the last 3 times I ordered, I did make a point to order off of the slightly new gluten free menu. Because of this I assume I am ruling out wheat and gluten reaction/allergy. However, I am also very sensitive to MSG and experience a similar reaction when I eat at other Chinese restaurants or just eat other foods containing this additive in general. That said, MSG could be the culprit even though they say they don't use it. Here me out here though, even though they really may not use MSG in their food, they probably still use other flavor enhancers that still contain glutamic acids just like MSG does, like autolyzed yeast extract or hydrolyzed proteins (soy, corn, etc.), which ultimately could be the ingredient that is making us sick. Also, I can't rule out Peanut Oil as a possibility as well, which is the most common oil used in Chinese cooking. The reason why this is a problem and a possibility for a reaction is that for one, peanut oil goes rancid fast, and who knows if sometimes they decide they still want to use it instead of throwing it out. And two, peanuts in general are usually bad for you and cause allergic reactions because of how they are grown and processed. More specifically, most peanuts in the U.S. come when climates that are too moist to not routinely grow mold spores on them (corn too!). These nuts are not cleaned and instead are just processed as is and, therefore, contain hefty amounts of myco-toxins that make you sick and contribute to allergic reactions. Hint: If you do choose peanuts or peanut butter, choose peanuts that come from dry climates such as Arizona where the mold will not grow. Arrowhead Mills is a good brand and I personally do not experience the same level of illness. All in all, who knows about P.F. Changs. I can’t find ingredients on their website, only nutritional info, and damn they are salty.

Lori said...

I used to like PF Changs until I began to notice feeling ill after eating there. The symptoms are not dramatic like some of those posted here, just a feeling of queasiness and slight headache, and a 'druggy' feeling. I did not have any alcohol with my meal and yet driving home I felt like I really should not be behind the wheel. All I wanted to do was get home and into bed. It was only 9pm.

I had a coworker tell me that after a meal at PF Changs with his family he left the restaurant feeling like someone had given him drugs, though he did not order any alcohol.

I don't want chemicals in my food, even the "tasty" ones and if that is what it takes for PFC's to make their food flavorful then I really don't need to go there any more. Pity, it's my daughter's favorite restaurant.

Mrs. Peterson said...

I am migraine sensitive so I asked the waiter if they used msg before I ordered; she answered with a very quick and confident, "no." So, I indulged. I dont drink much, but I had a martini too. After eating and drinking I felt nausious and headachy and all I wanted to do was get home and lay down. I thought it was from the martini until I just ate my left-overs today. Again, the same exact feelings. All of these comments sound like MSG reactions. I am thinking PF Changs does not add MSG, but uses products that already contain the ingredient. I will not be going back no matter how good it taste!

Mrs. Peterson said...

Just did some research and PF Changs may not use MSG, but yeast extract, which can sometimes cause the same reactions in sensitive people.

Anonymous said...

Count me in as one who gets HORRIBLE cramping, diarrhea, and slight headaches after eating their food(for me, it's their new frozen entrees). 3 out of 3 times i've had this reaction to THEIR food, and NOWHERE else!! i too, have an iron stomach otherwise, but Changs kills me!! I don't think it's the MSG, as i've eaten at plenty of other chinese places that use it, and haven't ever gotten sick.. i'm thinking it's the oil..

Anonymous said...

I haven't been to PFC in over 10 years due to getting ill every time I ate there. Same symptoms as everyone else (stomach ache etc.) after leaving the restuarant.

I really like PFC, and thought I could narrow it down to a dish, but to no avail.

I thought I would try them again recently to see if there were any changes. I was ill for 2 days this time. I hate to scratch them off my list, but it's an embarrassing predictament. =(

I think perhaps someone said something about cottonseed oil? Maybe that's the culprit. But I never got sick at Cafe Du Monde? hmm...

Anonymous said...

I have had reactions to P.F. Changs before (headache, feet swelling), but decided to try it again when my mother-in-law picked it up and brought it to me last night. Very soon after eating, I had an awful headache and felt flushed and dehydrated. I have a 5-week-old infant who seemed to get sick from my breastmilk several hours later. She became very fussy and her skin was all clammy and hot. So whatever it is, it passes through breastmilk. No more P. F. Changs for me!

Anonymous said...

I have noticed I get terrible stomach problems and always end up in the bathroom very shortly after eating at PFC or Pei Wei. However, when I quit ordering anything fried and stuck with things like the ginger broccoli chicken, I did not get sick. I think for me it must be the oil they use to fry their food. I usually do fine if I avoid the spring rolls or crispy chicken. Anything fried there sends me straight to the bathroom!

Anonymous said...

I've been having these same issues. The last time I ate at PF Changs I had terrible stomach issues. More recently, I ate there and the next morning had a headache that I fought all day. I worked out that night and felt like I was going to pass out. Then, stupidly, I came home and ate leftovers from PF Changs. In the middle of the night I woke up with a pounding headache and in the morning was so swollen that I couldn't put on my wedding rings. It's now more 10:30 at night and I'm still swollen and headachy. I don't know what could be causing this.

Anonymous said...

I had lunch at PFC a few hours ago and I googled PF Changs and MSG and found this blog. I feel nauseated, my fingers are swollen and I have this funky taste in my mouth. Also very thirsty. Def not worth it. Never going there again.

Anonymous said...

No stomach issues here, but extreme puffing in the hands that I could barely fold my fingers. This usually happens when I eat fried food and MSG in particular, not to mention how extremely salty the food is and soaked in sugary sauces.. The worst foods you could consume..
I am sure they are using something that contains flavors with sodium glutamate!! Obviously chain restaurants like PF, Olive Garden, TGI.. etc are a step above junk food, and is tailored for profit, using cheap ingredients, a cooking method where every dish they bring is burned to oblivion.
No big deal for me I rarely step into chain restaurants and most of time I cook at home with fresh and organic ingredients ... After all you only live once!!!

Anonymous said...

I tried PF Changs finally again like some of you. I had not been there in over a year and I came down with the same symptoms. Last time I thought that maybe it could of been food poisoning but for it to happen again is craziness. I could not even make it all the way home from the restaurant. I had to pull over to find the closest place and high tail it to the bathroom to vomit. Cramping like you'd think you were going into labor. It's a TERRIBLE feeling ... I hate to cross PG Chang's off my list but I will NEVER NEVER ever be eating there again. Once it hits you it does last for a while. I have been between the bathroom and curled in the fetal position all afternoon and evening. I have never had any other problems with any other restaurant like this. Also, I enjoy spices thoroughly and eat jalapenos with almost anything.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I cant eat there - I always thought it was the oyster sauce until i ordered something different. I still got mildly sick from chicken/rice. My though is its some oil they uses. I can literally eat anything anywhere except PF Changs.

Anonymous said...

Last Night me and My Boy friend Both ate there for V-day and we BOTH felt sick afterwards. My tummy started feeling off while we were sitting there talking after dinner and he started in after He's dropped me off home. I kept the left overs... Ate some for lunch and NAUSEA!!! MAJOR...Lasted for hours up until now... I found this site searching for a probable cause... WOW.

Cindy from NJ said...

Just ate there last night and the same thing: couple hours afterward cramping and vomiting etc. Seems like once the food was out of my stomach I felt somewhat better. I'd eaten there twice before with no problems. Also, like a lot of people here, I do not normally have a sensitive stomach. So glad I found this blog!

Anonymous said...

Look at the menu and check out the amount of sodium in your particular dish and you will find out the reason for the swelling of your hands and feet

Anonymous said...

MI anonymous - wish this mystery could be solved. I am still dealing with intestinal trouble Sunday after eating a huge meal there Friday. Why are so many of us reacting this way? I am no hypochrondriac and rarely have trouble at restaurants. Urg...

Anonymous said...

I too, suffer the same thing every time I eat here. Swollen hands and feet, horrible stomach cramps and bad, head pounding headache. I know they say they don't use MSG, but some soy sauce brands add MSG, Kikkomann being one of them. They use a ton of soy sauce, I think, because their food is extremely salty. I so frustrated by this. I love the way their food tastes, but I don't ever want to feel that sick again...

Anonymous said...

I was googling .. why does my tummy hurt so much after eating from pf changs ( since this is the second time it has happened ) and was relieved to know I am not the only one! :)

Anonymous said...

Like everyone else, I was googling PF CHang and diarrhea after spending the night quite ill. Very unpleasant!

I'm in Houston and this one just opened. Quite the memorable anniversary dinner!

Anonymous said...

Yes i too ate there last night. My wife and i started to feel a headache in the exa t same spot, rivht above our left eyebrow. We both became extremely tired and our stomachs were off the rest of the night. This cant be a coincidence. I ate there only one other time becore and it was so long ago i dont even remember whether i go sick or not but i will stick to my local Chinese restaurant where i get twice as much food for half the price and feel fine everytime I eat there. Thanks PF. Hangs for making the decision for me!

Amy said...

I've been searching for answers but am turning up empty handed and it's so frustrating. Pei Wei is what's making me extremely ill. After years of eating there with no problems, I've suddenly developed a sensitivity to something they use. In the past year, I've eaten at Pei Wei four times and each time I get more violently ill. It starts with upper abdominal pain that at first, feels like gas. It quickly turns into stabbing abdominal pain, a horrible bloated and full feeling, diarrhea, etc. The last episode kept me down for almost a full 24 hours. I'm inclined to believe that both PF Changs and Pei Wei are using oils that they're not disclosing. Their websites state that they use canola and vegetable oils, but from what I've been reading about oils such as cottonseed, I think they may be misleading us. Cottonseed oil is inexpensive and has a long shelf life, therefore appealing to restaurants. However, it's considered an agricultural product and not regulated by the FDA. Many people have a sensitivity to it and the symptoms of that sensitivity are typically nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach cramps, headaches, etc. Just a theory, but wish that someone could figure it out.

Jordan said...

Ate at P.F Chang's and threw up a couple of hours later. At first it was just nausea and stomach aches, then I finally vomited and felt a lot better. This was the first time I've ever eaten there and I have never felt this sick after eating out. I thought maybe i just ate too much but after vomiting I realized it must be more than that. I ate the brown rice, lettuce wraps and changs chicken ... Don't know if others ate the same dishes

Anonymous said...

I will never eat a PF Chang's again.... I actually like the taste of their food, but 30 minutes after I eat there (EVERY TIME) i get severe diarrhea. There are much better places out there, that won't make you sick. PF Chang's needs to figure it out.

Anonymous said...

Wow!! I thought I was the only one. I truly feel poisoned (everytime) after eating at PF Changs.

DeeDee said...

ohmygod, i've had a HORRIBLE headache all day today which is almost unbearable..............
we ate at PF Changs last night and the mongolian beef tasted sooooooo good (almost TOO good, i guess now that i look back). i do know that i can't eat msg, so i just assumed that it had to have been in the dish even though they said it wasn't, but i guess it could have been another flavor-enhancer that i just wasn't aware of. Does anyone who has had a problem with their food know of any dish on the menu that doesn't cause them bad symptoms? i just ask because a number of people i know want to eat there and if i go, i'd like to eat something safe on the menu. Let me know if you do. thanks

Anonymous said...

Hi. I stumbled upon this blog searching for my employee website. I work at Pei Wei, which is P.F. Chang's sister company. I am interested to figure out what is causing every to become sick. I should let you all know that we don't use any MSG, nor do we use cottonseed oil. I don't know if I can speak for P.F. Changs about this one, but Pei Wei uses soy oil. When I go into work today, I plan to ask my employeer if we use some of the things listed here that might make people sick. If anyone has some questions they would like for me to pass along, I would be more than happy to do so.

Anonymous said...

I ate PFC for lunch and even though I ate small portions, in less than 15 minutes I began to feel bloated. In less than an hour I thought I was going to explode! Later I got severe cramps, then horrible gas! I'm so relieved to find this blog full of others that have suffered from this food-I thought I might have food poisoning or the flu! Yuck! Their food tastes great, but isn't worth the side effects.

Anonymous said...

Every time I eat there or try their frozen entrees, I get horrible smelling gas and diarrhea. The gas and diarrhea smell like a noxious chemical.

Anonymous said...

PF Chang... why do you hurt me so, is right! I am sad because it has always been one of my favorite restaurants, but tonight may have been my last visit. I developed a throbbing migraine about 30 minutes after we left. To make matters worse, my husband has been keeled over in stomach pains all evening. Normally, I would say it was something I ate earlier, but I didn't eat anything until PFC.

Anonymous said...

Not as bad as other people, I just have a bad headache and I feel weird. My first thought was MSG, but they say they don't use MSG and I can't actually remember ever having issues with MSG. My next thought is the prevalence of soy sauce in everything and salt. I don't think I tolerate soy all that well. Not sure. I ate crab wontons, egg rolls and crab fried rice. My head is just pounding and I feel unusually tired yet restless. I don't get headaches often, so I was blaming PF Changs and was curious if other people has issues. No stomach issues though, thankfully. Started to get the headache driving home from the restaurant.

Anonymous said...

I just Googled PF Changs and diarrhea and found this. I ordered Singapore noodles off the gluten free menu. Gave me the worst diarrhea EVER. Thought they slipped in some wheat but oil, bad oil, yeast, msg...any of them could be culprits. Never again!

Anonymous said...

Had the at home meal and have been burping for the past three hours. Feel like my stomach is inflating and cannot sleep....wtf is this...ugh

Anonymous said...

Omg I thought it was just me. I loved the food but got severe diarrhea and did not eat anything else but have my morning coffee until PF's an I have been having multiple trips to the toliet for the past 8 hours. What are they putting in their food that could cause this??? I will never go there again. I had fried green beans, egg soup and lemon chicken. It was delicious but not worth this.

Anonymous said...

It happened to me 2 days ago! I also thought it was MSG related - and now I am finding out they don't use MSG. I had the WORST HEADACHE EVER!!! I won't be going back! I have no idea what it was - but it is reason enough to keep me from experiencing that pain again!

ACross said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ACross said...

Okay - I figured out what it was! This is the second time it's happened to me, so I had to do some research.

The good news: This is not some wierd ingredient, allergen or rotten oil, and it's not location specific. It is not something sinister or negligent.

The short version: it's a niacin overdose. You intake too much niacin in too short of a time for your liver to process it all. Some people are more sensitive to it than others.

You can get headaches, dizziness, slow/fast heartbeat, itching, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.

If you eat big portions like the dinner plates and have other sources of niacin like vitamins, energy drinks, or coffee, you overwhelm your liver and it can cause some really bad short term issues. Doing it repeatedly can actually cause liver damage.

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/niacin-overdose/AN01644

If you have to eat gluten free like me and the wife, the soy sauce in their recipes has to be replaced with tamari, which has a LOT more niacin than soy sauce. Something like 50% more. Soy sauce itself has plenty already.

If you eat something with peanuts, those are also high in niacin.

Depending on how they make their egg drop soup...

So it's fine to eat, but don't eat it with or after coffee/energy drinks/vitamins, and don't eat the big portions - take some home.

Other niacin sources include some drug test cleansing kits and supplements for regulating blood pressure.

Anonymous said...

I think it is GMO's that they are using in their food. Genetically Modified Foods. The foods that are GMO's right now are anything with soy, corn, canola, cotton, alfalfa, papaya, zucchini squash, and yellow squash. These are foods that they inject fertilizer into the seeds.

People need to eat organic, or non gmo foods. Unfortunately in the USA, there is no requirements to label anything. Hence, dear people we are becoming ill from this trashie food, that they're serving in all the restaurants. All of the most popular restaurants.

I get sick after eating their also. Many of the same symptoms of the rest of you, stinky poop, loose bowels, a foul taste in my mouth, severe stomach cramps, sometimes constipation. I won't be going back. I believe I have always suffered from eating this food. If you want to call it food.

Dt. Mercola, has an article written today on his site discussing the chemicals they are manufacturing for our foods, it is quite interesting. You may also want to read what he has to say about GMO'd foods. It will be a real eye opener for a great many people. It certainly was for me after a ruptured appendix a few years ago.

Doctor Mercola is a medical doctor, he is wonderful, and has helped so many people on line with his honesty, candor, and knowledge.

Anonymous said...

Uggghhhhh .. this happened to me yest for the third time.. i got severe stomach pain which started not less than 30 mins and lasted for the whole night :( .. and up to my knowledge i have had veg spring rolls all the time .. there s something really terrible which makes me feel sick in no time.. i seriously doubt on the quality of the food .. :( i will never ever go there again and i will not like to take my family too ..

Anonymous said...

I ate there for the first time last night....I too developed a pounding headache and threw up on my driveway on the way home....ordered lettuce wraps, pad Thai with chicken and flour less chocolate tort. I used the sauce they made on table on my lettuce wrap. Felt better once I threw up.

Human said...

I just purchased $150 worth of frozen dinners only to find out that this SH%@ makes me sick. What causes that? Do they use some kind of strange spice?

Caroline Higgins said...

I love Pei Wei, but I always get a bad stomach/intestinal pains that last all night and into the next day. I know you posted this three years ago, but wanted to post. I still have a stomach ache and its 24 hours later. What is IT??

Anonymous said...

My wife and I ate at PF Chang's last night. It was my fourth time. Once again I had the same reaction the next day: foggy head, light head-ache, low energy, scratchy throat. I had one beer before the meal. I had tofu with broccoli and vegetarian lettuce wraps. The tofu had a zingy saltiness that made me think msg, but they claim not to use it. I called their customer service at corporate and was told that in order to get a full list of ingredients in a menu item the request must come from a medical doctor.

So, they will gladly sell me food to put inside my body, but not let me know what's in it...It's a corporate secret. Velcome to Amedica.

Anonymous said...

I ate there with my mom and my mom had an allergic reaction. She started itching and ended up with a very bad red rash all over her body. I had to take her to the doctor. The doctor thinks it was something in the food or sauces she ate at PF Chang's as that is the only thing she ate that never eats. She was given an antihistamine and prednizone.

Anonymous said...

I didn’t think I was allergic to MSG since I’ve eaten foods with that additive and with yeast extract (canned soups, frozen dinners, etc.)without known problem. But after my first visit to PF Chang’s last week, I had a terrible reaction, starting to feel ill within an hour of eating. Then I endured 4 miserable hours of stomach cramps, dry heaves and bad diarrhea. Three days later I still didn’t feel back to normal. I thought it was food poisoning, but hubby didn’t feel sick at all and ate what I did.

PF Chang’s insists that they do not add MSG to their foods or use any products with MSG listed on their label. However, they could be using some other glutamate or flavor enhancer such as yeast extract. Those additives are closely related, or in fact do contain MSG. I suspect that Chang’s uses a large quantity of those additives-- more than my body can tolerate.

Wikipedia states:
Many food producers have replaced monosodium glutamate with yeast extract, which requires no E-number labeling, and allows food producers to claim their product is 'all natural' or 'with natural flavorings'. Health proponents claim this is a subversive move by the industry to hide an additive since the MSG contained within the yeast extract does not require explicit labeling.

Another theory is that I am allergic to tofu/soy, which I also have had in small amounts before. I’m not a scientist, but I understand that allergies to soy/tofu are fairly common. The mast cells in my gut produced a wave of histamine that caused the lining to become very inflamed, irritated, and watery. The body sees a strange amino acid/protein like MSG or soy and tries to attack it to get rid of it. All of that histamine made me cramp and dry heave and empty everything out of the intestines. Some people with MSG or soy sensitivity get wheezing, headache, dizziness, tingling of the lips or throat, and even hives. Chang’s most likely uses huge amounts of soy products plus flavor enhancers that contain MSG-- and some of us can’t tolerate that slam to our digestive system.
http://www.journal.au.edu/au_techno/2008/jul08/journal121_article06.pdf
Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/340148-stomach-pains-tofu-and-soy/#ixzz2UEigEEJb

I will definitely try to avoid soy and large amounts of MSG or yeast extract from now on!

Billy Annaruma said...

It might not be MSG, but 9 out of 10 times I go there I get MSG poisoning like symptoms, gotta drink tons of water, my throat closes up and I can't breathe. my vision gets weird and I smell things that are not there. I have to take a Benadryl every time.
SO if it's not MSG what is it - too much sodium?
Billy

Anonymous said...

I ate at the new Baybrook store this week. It was the first time I've ever eaten at any PFC and my last!! I was rewarded with what could only be described as "explosive diarrhea"!! This was less than an hour after eating. I don't have to experience it twice to know I have a problem with the restaurant. I had the ginger chicken broccoli and thought it was awfully bland but maybe not!!

KrissyTheTexasGirl said...

I guess I'll chime into this discussion as well. Yyyeah...so I went to PF Chang's for the 1st time with a friend yesterday and this morning I was having VERY bad diarrhea and threw up twice. Low and behold it looked just like the lettuce wraps with peking duck I ordered. Sorry for the graphic description folks. I don't know what the heck is going on with their food, could be MSG substitute or using GMO products, but PF Chang's...you done f***** up. More than likely I won't eat there again.

Anonymous said...

Went to the store and picked up two frozen 'P.F. Chang's Chicken And Broccoli' for dinner late last week. After eating this I have had very bad gas and diarrhea pretty much for the past week. Took some Imodium which helped slow things down but still there and definitely not normal stools. Been eating a bland diet. Going to doctor's to make sure I am okay today.

joni said...

I guess I am in good company. I ended up hospitalized after PF Chang's 4 years ago. Severe cramps diarrhea. Well last night we went to Pei Wei and I got sick again. Up all night. Read this blog and no one seems to know I thought maybe they sprayed the lettuce with something. No more for me. I have a good fried rice recipe down pat, will work on other home made Chinese food.

Raven said...

I suspect Chang's is using Ribonucleotide for flavoring. Here's a link to an article about it.

http://healthybliss.net/the-new-msg-is-it-even-more-deadly-than-msg-itself-ribonucleotides-your-health/

Anonymous said...

Ate dinner at PF Changs last night, got home, and had excruciating stomach cramps, followed by diarrhea all night long. I also hardly ever get sick, and don't have a sensitive stomach. I ate:

GF Spicy Chicken
GF Mongolian Beed

And no, I do not have a gluten intolerance. I was eating with my fiancé who does.

Anonymous said...

I ate at Pei wei 2 days ago. It is my husband favorite lunch place. I have eaten there literally about 3 dozen times. We go there all the time. And for the first time I got insanely sick about 30minutes after leaving the restaurant. Severe abdominal cramping, diarrhea until everything was out of my body. I felt like I was going to throw up the whole time-mouth salivating excessively but I actually never vomited. I got the Pei Wei Spicy chicken-stock velvet-which I have gotten at least a dozen times prior and never had a problem.

Anonymous said...

Funny I found this blog....I went to PF CHANGS for lunch today...I ate about half of the lettuce wraps (no white rice strips that they usually put on it) ....less than one piece of lettuce.....a couple spoonfuls of hot and sour soup and a couple of bites f Mongolian beef (no rice) and the rest of my lunch I brought home. I immediately felt so full that my stomach was visible distended by several inches...I also felt sleepy and sluggish....sort of drugged...i was definitely in a daze...I went to the bathroom in PF CHANGS and suddenly and unexpectedly threw up...it was very strange bc I did not have nausea and I had no warning that I was going to throw up....(sorry if tmi). After that I left immediately and had to unbutton my jeans as they were literally hurting me from being so bloated ....I drove him literally falling asleep and it was only 330pm...I came home and went straight to bed feeling so bloated and gassy that I felt pregnant.....I went straight to bed as I couldn't keep my eyes open and I just woke up now at 730pm.....how strange is this???? I googled what happened and found this blog but only got through a couple of posts before falling asleep as I truly felt drugged....now that I woke up I figured I'd post to warn others. No idea why this happened but recently I saw on dr oz that apple juice has a small legal trace of arsenic in it so who knows what strange chemical PF CHANGS uses to preserve their food

Anonymous said...

I too get sick from pf changs. I keep changing what I eat but it always makes me sick. Within an hour after eating, I am in the bathroom..ugh it really sucks bc I love there food. I wish they would change it up.

Anonymous said...

Just ate there burping and have a headache cannot eat too much they obviously put something in the food for folks that are sensitive but what .?

Anonymous said...

I just ate the frozen pf changs and have been on the toilet 4 times. I feel like it emptied me out. Yuk!

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