20 Oct 2019
If you cut just ONE thing from your family's diet, this is it!
You think you are really doing it right. You pack fruit cups and yogurt for your kids to eat instead of school lunch. You start your day with some Quaker instant oatmeal instead of sugary cereal. You choose a salad at lunch with low fat dressing instead of pizza. And instead of snacking on brightly colored candy you choose microwave popcorn. Healthy choices, right?
Maybe not. Each of the foods listed above that you think are healthy, actually contains a nasty ingredient that has not only been shown to be an allergen, but in some cases has been linked to cancer and neurological disorders. The ingredients in question are food dyes. And they are hiding in places that you think are healthy. During this trick or treat season, we have to beware of a group of ingredients referred to as the “Southampton Six”.
The “Southampton Six” is not a group of thugs lurking in a dark ally, but rather a group of food dyes that have been called out as potential allergens in the EU for almost 10 years. Any products in the EU containing these synthetic dyes must carry the label warning, “‘May have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children.” Yet our FDA considers them safe to add to our food supply. It’s time that we get educated and make a conscious choice to eliminate these ingredients from our diets.
We know three of the “Southampton Six” as Red 40, Yellow 5 and Yellow 6. In the US, we also see Blue 1, Blue 2, and Red 3 in our foods. And our FDA thinks they safe to add to the foods we consume every day, so Americans are now eating 5X more food dye than in 1955. But we now know that these food dyes are known to cause hyperactivity in children (and can cause allergies in both children and adults). So where do we find these dyes? Not just in the colorful candy we see on the shelves around Halloween, but in some of the very foods we consider healthy.
- Blue 1 – Banned in France & Finland, potential for causing chromosomal damage. Found in some Greek yogurts like FAGE or Dannon Light & Fit. Avoid this by choosing an organic yogurt option like Stoneyfield Organic.
- Blue 2 – Banned in Norway, potential for causing brain tumors. Found in
- Red 3 – Our FDA tried to ban it and failed (how is that possible?), potential for causing chromosomal damage, brain tumors and neurochemical and behavioral effects. Found in canned fruit and fruit cups. Avoid by choosing fresh fruit like apples or pears instead.
- Yellow 5 – Banned in Norway, potential for causing allergies, asthma, aggression and violent behavior, chromosomal damage, hyperactivity, lymphomas, insomnia, neurochemical behavioral effects and tumors. Found in
- Yellow 6 – Banned in Norway and Sweden, potential for causing allergies, asthma, eczema, hives, hyperactivity and tumors. Found in some packaged applesauce combined with Red 40 and Blue 1 to make it appear fresh. Choose applesauce that carry’s the USDA organic symbol. It’s worth the extra $1.
- Blue 2 – Banned in Norway, potential for causing brain tumors. Found in M&M’s, Skittles and Jell-o Instant pudding
- Yellow 5 – Banned in Norway, potential for causing allergies, asthma, aggression and violent behavior, chromosomal damage, hyperactivity, lymphomas, insomnia, neurochemical behavioral effects and tumors. Found in Doritos, Kraft macaroni and cheese and even some pancake mixes and ice cream.
- Red 40 – This is the most widely used and consumed food dye. Potential for causing chromosomal damage, hyperactivity and lymphomas. This one ingredient is found on labels in 9 different ways.
o Red 40
o Red no. 40
o FD&C Red no. 40
o FD and C Red No. 40
o Allura Red
o Allura Red AC
o C.I. 16035
o C.I. Food Red 17.
Red 40 is in so many things including Pedialyte Fruit Punch Powder has 3 mg of Red 40 per serving! Also be on the lookout for Cheerios, Kashi GoLean, Yoplait yogurts, kids medicines, cough drops and even vitamins!
Also be on the lookout for caramel coloring found in your instant oatmeal, microwave popcorn and salad dressings. This is created by heating sugar and adding ammonia. Yuck! This has the potential to cause cancer.
With Halloween just around the corner, it is possible to treat the kiddos without making them sick. Brands like Wholesome, Made Good, Enjoy Life and even Hippeas make sweet and tasty snack that kids of all ages love without artificial colors. So stop into Nuts ‘n Berries and trust that you won’t find any of the “Southampton Six” or those other yucky food dyes in any of the products we carry!
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