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Your Health - What You Don't Know is in Your Food Can Kill You

Posted May 12 2010 4:01am
Something that we should all be a lot more aware of is the additives that are put into our food.  Lots of them. Designed to make food products taste better, look better, last longer, and to get us addicted to them to keep coming back over and over and spending our money on the kind of rubbish that is contributing to the global sickness movement.  The big companies love them...and why wouldn't they?  After all their pay packets depend on them.

These numbers are all meaningless to the average consumer until we start to look a little closer.  Unfortunately, looking a little closer is something that usually only occurs when it is too late....when the sickness has already struck...and when the damage has already been done.


All food additives are listed below by code number and by name. There are about 350 permitted food additives in Australia. About 50 are likely to cause adverse reactions. They are marked in RED bold with “AVOID”

Other Additives in RED should be used, if at all, with caution.

Additives in italics are new, untested and should be avoided.

Other additives are unlikely to cause reactions. This includes anti-caking agents, bleaches, emulsifiers, mineral salts, propellants, food acids, sweeteners, thickening agents, vegetable gums and vitamins.

Last update June 2009
All food additives are listed below by code number and by name


100 Turmeric or curcumin, yellow

101 Riboflavin, lactoflavin, vitamin B2, yellow, failsafe

102 Tartrazine, yellow #5 AVOID

103 Alkanet, pink Alkanet is so new it hasn't been tested for behavioural and learning toxicity. It is a natural colour derived from a plant. As with annatto, this is no guarantee of safety.

104 Quinoline yellow AVOID

107 Yellow 2G AVOID

110 Sunset yellow AVOID

120 Cochineal or carmines, red Cochineal, from the body of a South American insect, is moderate in terms of food intolerance reactions, but severe allergic reactions have been reported, especially in dye workers.

122 Azorubine, carmoisine AVOID

123 Amaranth AVOID

124 Ponceau 4R, brilliant scarlet AVOID

127 Erythrosine AVOID

128 Red 2G AVOID

129 Allura red AVOID

132 Indigotine, indigo carmine AVOID

133 Brilliant blue AVOID

140 Chlorophyll

141 Chlorophyll-copper

142 Food green S, acid brilliant green AVOID

143 Fast green FCF AVOID

150 Caramel (see comment)

In the US - and possibly in Europe - caramel 150 may be divided into caramels 150 (sulphite ammonia caramel), 150a (plain or spirit caramel), 150b (caustic sulphite caramel) and 150c (ammonia caramel). Plain caramel is considered failsafe. There is a report of sulphite ammonia caramel used widely in soft drinks like cola causing problems for the extra sulphite sensitive.

151 Brilliant black BN AVOID

153 Carbon black, vegetable carbon

155 Brown HT, chocolate brown AVOID

160a Beta-carotene (failsafe)

160 Carotene (others) - see listed below

160b Annatto extracts, bixin, norbixin AVOID

160c Capsanthin (new)

160e beta-apo-8' carotenal (new)

160f E-apo-8' carotenoic acid (new)

160e and 160f are too new to have been tested for behavioural toxicity. They might be safe like betacarotene (160a) or harmful like annatto (160b).

161a flavoxanthin - see comment below

161b lutein - see comment below

161c kryptoxanthin - see comment below

161d rubixanthin - see comment below

161e violoxanthin - see comment below

161f rhodoxanthin - see comment below

161g canthaxanthin - see comment below

161j astaxanthin - see comment below

161I citranaxanthin - see comment below

Comment: Yellow, orange and red colours called carotenoids occur in nature in colourful fruits and vegetables as well as leafy greens where they are hidden by chlorophyll. Carotenoids are also responsible for the colour of salmon flesh, lobster shells or the plumage of birds like flamingos. These colours have been used for years in poultry and farmed fish feed and are now appearing more frequently as 'natural' food additives. When used commercially these colours are usually synthetically or biotechnically produced, e.g. extracted from algae. In 2002, the European Commission realised that no risk assessment had ever been carried out for carotenoids other than canthaxanthin, which has been found to cause retinal damage when used in large doses in tanning tablets for humans. Safety testing is currently being carried out, but as usual it does not include testing on children's health, behaviour or learning. These colours are too new for us to know whether they will cause dose-related food intolerance reactions. When astaxanthin 161j red colour used in farmed fish was tested on 35 healthy adults, there were small but significant increases in eosinophils (white blood cell associated with allergic reactions, and involved in eosinophilic oesophagitis, a new type of heartburn): We have received two reports of possible reactions to strongly coloured commercial eggs compared to natural eggs by extremely sensitive failsafers with a high egg intake. For colours in eggs see

Just because colours occur in nature, it doesn't mean they are safe when consumed in doses many times higher than found in natural foods. While we expect these additives will be safer than the artificial colours they replace, we recommend caution and welcome feedback.

162 Beet red Beet red may contain sodium nitrate (preservative 251) up to 25 mg/kg.

163 Anthocyanins, red, blue, violet (from plants)
Colours made from plants are moderate in salicylates (eg anthocyanins, beet red, turmeric, tannins) except for beta-carotene (160a) which is low.

170 Calcium carbonate, white (failsafe)

171 Titanium dioxide, white (failsafe)

172 Iron oxide - red, black, yellow (failsafe)

174 Silver

181 Tannic acid, brown

Preservatives - sorbates

200 Sorbic acid AVOID

201 Sodium sorbate AVOID

202 Potassium sorbate AVOID

203 Calcium sorbate AVOID

Preservatives - benzoates

210 Benzoic acid AVOID

211 Sodium benzoate AVOID

212 Potassium benzoate AVOID

213 Calcium benzoate AVOID

Sorbates and benzoates have been associated with the full range of food intolerance reactions.

216 Propylparaben

218 Methylparaben

Preservatives 216 and 218 are only permitted in food colours in Australia.

Preservatives - sulphites (aka sulfites)

220 Sulphur dioxide AVOID

221 Sodium sulphite AVOID

222 Sodium bisulphite AVOID

223 Sodium metabisulphite AVOID

224 Potassium metabisulphite AVOID

225 Potassium sulphite AVOID

228 Potassium bisulphite AVOID

Sulphites (above) are the biggies for asthmatics. Not to be confused with sulphates (514-519). Also known as sulfites.

234 Nisin

235 Natamycin

242 Dimethyl dicarbonate (new, untested)

Preservatives - nitrates and nitrites (also colour fixatives)

249 Potassium nitrite AVOID

250 Sodium nitrite AVOID

251 Sodium nitrate AVOID

252 Potassium nitrate AVOID

Unlike many food additives, nitrates and nitrites are necessary. Used in processed meats, they prevent bacterial growth and food poisoning, but they are not failsafe.

Food acids

260 Acetic acid

261 Potassium acetate

262 Sodium diacetate

262 Sodium acetate

263 Sodium acetate

264 Ammonium acetate

270 Lactic acid

Preservatives - propionates

280 Propionic acid AVOID

281 Sodium propionate AVOID

282 Calcium propionate AVOID

283 Potassium propionate AVOID

Widespread use in bread in Australia and the US, propionates are rarely used in Europe. Recently permitted also in cheese, fruit and vegetable products in Australia.

290 Carbon dioxide (propellant)

296 Malic acid (food acid)

297 Fumaric acid (food acid)


300 Ascorbic acid (vitamin C)

301 Sodium ascorbate

302 Calcium ascorbate

303 Potassium ascorbate

304 Ascorbyl palmitate

306 Mixed tocopherols (vitamin E)

307 dl-a-Tocopherol

308 g-Tocopherol

309 d-Tocopherol

310 Propyl gallate AVOID

311 Octyl gallate AVOID

312 Dodecyl gallate AVOID

315 Erythorbic acid

316 Sodium erythorbate

319 tert-Butylhydroquinone, tBHQ AVOID

320 Butylated hydroxyanisole, BHA AVOID

321 Butylated hydroxytoluene, BHT AVOID

322 Lecithin (also an emulsifier)

Gallates and TBHQ, BHA and BHT are used to preserve vegetable oils and margarines. When vegetable oils are used in other products, these antioxidants are often unlisted because of the 5% labelling loophole. BHA and BHT can also leach into products from cereal wrappers and clingfilm. Antioxidants 300-309 are safe alternatives.

325 Sodium lactate

326 Potassium lactate

327 Calcium lactate

328 Ammonium lactate

329 Magnesium lactate

330 Citric acid

331 Sodium dihydrogen citrate

331 Sodium citrate

331 Sodium acid citrate

332 Potassium citrates

333 Calcium citrate

334 Tartaric acid

335 Sodium tartrate

336 Potassium tartrate

336 Potassium acid tartrate

337 Potassium sodium tartrate

338 Phosphoric acid

Food acids are safe for most people. Most failsafers can manage citric acid (330), a few react.

Mineral salts

339 Sodium phosphates

340 Potassium phosphates

341 Calcium phosphates

342 Ammonium phosphates

343 Magnesium phosphates

349 Ammonium malate

350 DL-Sodium malates

351 Potassium malate

352 DL-Calcium malate

353 Metatartaric acid

354 Calcium tartrate

355 Adipic acid

357 Potassium adipate

365 Sodium fumarate

366 Potassium fumarate

367 Potassium fumarate

368 Ammonium fumarate

375 Nicotinic acid, niacin (B vitamin)

380 Triammonium citrate

380 Ammonium citrate

381 Ferric ammonium citrate

385 Calcium disodium EDTA

Vegetables gums and thickeners

400 Alginic acid

401 Sodium alginate

402 Potassium alginate

403 Ammonium alginate

404 Calcium alginate

405 Propylene glycol alginate

406 Agar agar, isinglass

407 Carrageenan

Vegetable gums are failsafe. Guar and xanthan are used extensively by coeliacs. Carrageenan (407) used in yoghurts, icecreams and others has been linked to cancer and is not recommended in large quantities for young children.

407a Processed eucheuma seaweed

409 Arabinogalactan

410 Locust bean gum

412 Guar gum

413 Tragacanth

414 Acacia

415 Xanthan gum

416 Karaya gum

418 Gellan gum


420 Sorbitol

421 Mannitol

422 Glycerin (glycerol)

Humectants keep food moist. These additives are also used as sweeteners. The first two are not permitted in foods for babies and young children. Glycerin is used as a humectant in marshmallows and other sweets. All can cause nausea or diarrhea in large amounts or sensitive people.


433 Polysorbate 80

435 Polysorbate 60

436 Polysorbate 65

440 Pectin (also a vegetable gum)

442 Ammonium salts of phosphatidic acid

444 Sucrose acetate isobutyrate

More mineral salts

450 Sodium pyrophosphate

450 Sodium acid pyrophosphate

450 Potassium pyrophosphate

451 Sodium tripolyphosphate

451 Potassium tripolyphosphate

452 Sodium polyphosphates, glassy

452 Sodium metaphosphate, insoluble

452 Potassium polymetaphosphate

460 Cellulose microcrystalline and powdered (anti-caking agent)

Thickeners, vegetable gums

461 Methylcellulose

464 Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose

465 Methyl ethyl cellulose

466 Sodium carboxymethylcellulose


470 Magnesium stearate (emulsifier, stabiliser)

471 Mono- and di-glycerides of fatty acids

472a Acetic and fatty acid esters of glycerol

472b Lactic and fatty acid esters of glycerol

472c Citric and fatty acid esters of glycerol

472d Tartaric and fatty acid esters of glycerol

472e Diacetyltartaric and fatty acid esters of glycerol

473 Sucrose esters of fatty acids

475 Polyglycerol esters of fatty acids

476 Polyglycerol esters of interesterified ricinoleic acid

477 Propylene glycol mono- and di-esters

480 Dioctyl sodium sulphosuccinate

481 Sodium stearoyl (or oleyl) lactylate

482 Calcium stearoyl (or oleyl) lactylate

491 Sorbitan monostearate

492 Sorbitan tristearate

Mineral salts

500 Sodium carbonate

500 Sodium bicarbonate

501 Potassium carbonates

503 Ammonium carbonate

503 Ammonium bicarbonate

504 Magnesium carbonate (anti-caking agent, mineral salt)

507 Hydrochloric acid (acidity regulator)

508 Potassium chloride

509 Calcium chloride

510 Ammonium chloride

511 Magnesium chloride

512 Stannous chloride (colour retention agent)

514 Sodium sulphate (mineral salt)

515 Potassium sulphate (mineral salt)

516 Calcium sulphate (flour treatment agent, mineral salt)

518 Magnesium sulphate (mineral salt)

519 Cupric sulphate (mineral salt)

526 Calcium hydroxide (mineral salt)

529 Calcium oxide (mineral salt)

535 Sodium ferrocyanide (anti-caking agent)

536 Potassium ferrocyanide (anti-caking agent)

541 Sodium aluminium phosphate, acidic (acidity regulator, emulsifier)

542 Bone phosphate (anti-caking agent)

551 Silicon dioxide (anti-caking agent)

552 Calcium silicate (anti-caking agent)

553 Talc (anti-caking agent)

554 Sodium aluminosilicate (anti-caking agent)

556 Calcium aluminium silicate (anti-caking agent)

558 Bentonite (anti-caking agent)

559 Kaolin (anti-caking agent)

570 Stearic acid (anti-caking agent)

575 Gluconod-lactone (acidity regulator)

577 Potassium gluconate (stabiliser)

578 Calcium gluconate (acidity regulator)

579 Ferrous gluconate (colour retention agent)

Flavour enhancers

620 L-Glutamic acid AVOID

621 Monosodium L-glutamate (MSG) AVOID

622 Monopotassium L-glutamate AVOID

623 Calcium di-L-glutamate AVOID

624 Monoammonium L-glutamate AVOID

625 Magnesium di-L-glutamate AVOID

627 Disodium guanylate AVOID

631 Disodium inosinate AVOID

635 Disodium 5'-ribonucleotides AVOID

The adverse effects of MSG (621) are well documented. We have also received many reports of skin rashes associated with new additive 635 which is a combination of 627 and 631. Yeast extract, hydrolysed vegetable protein (HVP) and hydrolysed plant protein (HPP) are ways that manufacturers include MSG without having to declare it on the label.

636 Maltol

637 Ethyl maltol

640 Glycine

641 L-Leucine

Miscellaneous additives

900 Dimethylpolysiloxane (emulsifier, antifoaming agent, anti- caking agent)

901 Beeswax, white and yellow (glazing agent)

903 Carnauba wax (glazing agent)

904 Shellac, bleached (glazing agent)

905a Mineral oil, white (glazing agent)

905b Petrolatum (glazing agent)

914 Oxidised polyethylene (Humectant)

920 L-Cysteine monohydrochloride (flour treatment agent)

925 Chlorine (flour treatment agent)

926 Chlorine dioxide (flour treatment agent)

928 Benzoyl peroxide (flour treatment agent)

941 Nitrogen (propellant)

942 Nitrous oxide (propellant)

Artificial sweeteners

950 Acesulphame potassium (artificial sweetening substance)

951 Aspartame (Nutrasweet, Equal) (artificial sweetening substance) AVOID

The safety of aspartame with regard to brain tumours and others is not proven. Aspartame in diet", "lite" and "no added sugar" products may increase appetite thus failing to assist weight loss. There are reports of addiction. Not recommended. Sugar is a natural alternative. Artificial sweeteners in general are unnecessary, artificial and not recommended.

952 Sodium cyclamate (artificial sweetening substance)

952 Cyclamic acid (artificial sweetening substance)

952 Calcium cyclamate (artificial sweetening substance)

953 Isomalt (humectant)

954 Sodium saccharin (artificial sweetening substance)

954 Saccharin (artificial sweetening substance)

954 Calcium saccharin (artificial sweetening substance)

955 Sucralose (artificial sweetening substance)

956 Alitame (artificial sweetening substance)

957 Thaumatin (flavour enhancer, artificial sweetening substance)

965 Maltitol and maltitol syrup (humectant, stabiliser)

966 Lactitol (humectant)

967 Xylitol (humectant, stabiliser)

1001 Choline salts and esters (emulsifier)

1100 Amylases (flour treatment agent)

1101 Proteases (papain, bromelain, ficin) (flour treatment agent, stabiliser, flavour enhancer)

1102 Glucose oxidase (antioxidant)

1104 Lipases (flavour enchancer)

1105 Lysozyme (preservative) from eggs

1200 Polydextrose (Humectant)

1201 Polyvinylpyrrolidone (stabiliser, clarifying agent, dispersing agent)

1202 Polyvinylpolypyrrolidone (colour stabiliser)

Thickeners, vegetable gums

1400 Dextrin roasted starch

1401 Acid treated starch

1402 Alkaline treated starch

1403 Bleached starch

1404 Oxidised starch

1405 Enzyme-treated starches

1410 Monostarch phosphate

1412 Distarch phosphate

1413 Phosphated distarch phosphate

1414 Acetylated distarch phosphate

1420 Starch acetate esterified with acetic anhydride

1421 Starch acetate esterified with vinyl acetate

1422 Acetylated distarch adipate

1440 Hydroxypropyl starch

1442 Hydroxypropyl distarch phosphate

1450 Starch sodium octenylsuccinate

1505 Triethyl citrate

1518 Triacetin (humectant)

1520 Propylene glycol (humectant)

1521 Polyethylene glycol 8000 (antifoaming agent)

We thank for this information.
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