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April 5, 1985

Wonton, Straight Up

JAMA. 1985;253(13):1880. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03350370060022

To the Editor.—  In a recent letter in The Journal1 Dr John Cochran and his wife Arlene described their 3-year-old daughter who, on three separate occasions, developed 30- to 45-minute episodes of inappropriate behavior, confusion, and slight ataxia of gait after she had eaten wonton soup along with cola. "She was not unlike an adult mildly intoxicated with alcohol."I did a random study of 100 Chilnese families and was surprised to find out that 28% of them added wine to the food during the cooking process. This figure might be higher in Chinese restaurants.Although monosodium glutamate (MSG) is most probably the cause of Chinese restaurant syndrome, the role played by alcohol should not be ignored.