Numerous studies show that certain synthetic food additives can have serious learning, behavior, and/or health effects for sensitive people.
Those pretty colors that make the "fruit punch" red, the gelatin green and the oatmeal blue are made from petroleum (crude oil) which is also the source for gasoline.
If you eat foods that contain synthetic dyes (food colors) then yes you are eating crude oil! These artificial colorings - which are found in many foods, medicines, vitamins, and some non-foods like toothpaste and mouthwash - are synthesized from petroleum.
Artificial colors have been around for more than 100 years. (Originally they were made from coal tar oil.) And children have been eating artificially colored and flavored products for decades.
But then . . . most children ate these additives infrequently. They got an occasional lollipop from the bank or barber shop. Cotton candy was found at the circus. Jelly beans were given at Easter, orange cupcakes at Halloween and candy canes at Christmas.
Today . . . the typical child growing up in the United States is exposed to these powerful chemicals all day, every day.
You will find them on the ingredient labels, listed as "Yellow No. 5," "Red 40," "Blue #1," etc.
The label may say "FD&C" before the number. That means "Food, Drug & Cosmetics." When you see a number listed as "D&C" in a product, such as "D&C Red #33" it means that this coloring is considered safe for medicine (drugs) and cosmetics, but not for food.
What's wrong with a little petrol in my diet?
Scientists have found that many people are sensitive to these chemicals, which can trigger a wide number of behavior, learning and health problems. "Artificial flavors and colors have been associated with respiratory allergic disorders, with urticaria (hives) and angioedema, with lesions of the tongue and buccal mucosa, with digestive disturbances, with arthralgia and hydrarthroses, and with headache and behavioral disturbances, including hyperkinesis in childhood." ( Nelson's Textbook of Pediatrics, 1987)
If they were harmful wouldn't they be banned?
Most of the synthetic dyes have already been banned, and those few which remain have been found to trigger many problems in sensitive people. The food and Drug Administration has tried for many years to have Red Dye Number 3 baned, but has faced vigorous industry and political pressure from manufacturers. (committee on Governmental Operations/U.S. House of Representatives, 1985)
Dyes which have been banned as health hazards:
Sudan 1 Butter Yellow Carbon Black Red 1 Red 2 Red 4 Red 32 Citrus Red Orange 1 Orange 2 Orange B Yellow 1 Yellow 2 Yellow 3 Yellow 4 Green 1 Green 3 Violet 1 (Source: Public Citizen Health Research Group)
Dyes still in use in foods*:
Red 3 - Partially banned; causes thyroid cancer in animals; is also used as a pesticide, to kill fly's eggs (maggots) in manure piles. (Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency) Red 22 - *Not Permitted in food, but found in many lipsticks; can be used as a herbicide, to kill marijuana plants. (Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture) Red 40 - Banned in Canada, but used in the U.S.; suspected of causing cancerous tumors in test animals. Yellow 5 - Widely used in foods and drugs; causes asthma and hives in some individuals; (U.S. Food & Drug Administration) triggers hyperactivity in sensitive children. (Lancet, Mar. 9, 1985) Yellow 6 - Can cause urticaria (hives), rhinitis, nasal congestion, bronchoconstriction, anaphylactoid reaction, purpura, indigestion, abdominal pain, vomiting. (Source: American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Drugs, 1985) Blue 1 and 2 - Blue 2 has recently been approved despite continuing controversy. (Source: Public Citizen Heath Research Group)
Foods free of these and other harmful additives can be found in your supermarket; often the consumer need only switch from one brand to another. A nonprofit organization can help you avoid petroleum-based additives.
Contact: Feingold Association of the United States www.feingold.org ~ (800) 321-3287
If you take a multi-vitamin get this free report Are Your Vitamins Safe? to see if you are taking synthetic ingredients.