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Kids And Nutrition: Food Colors

Photo credit: drcorneilus

A study published in September 2007 in the medical journal the Lancet confirmed that food dyes are linked to hyperactivity in children. The study’s researchers suggested that by removing these artificial colors from children’s diets, parents may be able to prevent or control hyperactive behavior.

Following the study, the UK’s Food Standards Agency asked food makers in 2008 to voluntarily recall six artificial colors in food by 2009. Most did. In addition, the European Parliament voted to add warning labels to products with those six synthetic red and yellow dyes. This caused large food manufacturers to reformulate their products so that they don’t include the questionable additives.

Indeed, A growing number of natural food dyes, such as caramel coloring and Annatto, are being commercially produced, partly due to consumer concerns surrounding synthetic dyes.

Not all experts agree that food dyes are a problem. Some say that more clinical data is needed before reaching final conclusions.

Artificial dyes are particularly prevalent in the sugary cereals, candies, sodas, and snack foods pitched to kids. Despite several organizations urging the FDA to ban these dyes, the FDA still considers the nine synthetic colors allowed in food as safe.

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2 Responses

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  1. Good topic… painful. When I approach a cashier in a supermarket i get nervous - it is usually decorated with candies with colors I only have seen in computer games… it is frightening and the taste is even worse… Sadly kids just LOVE it. It is tough game to play saying constantly NO. So far I was successful. I use fear factor… “if you eat this….”

  2. Vered said

    True, they place the worst stuff next to the cashier. I allow it in moderation, but I hate to see them eat those things.

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