Are Synthetic Food Colors Responsible for Hyperactivity?

Synthetic food colors have always attracted the ire of health experts with them being termed all sorts of things, ranging from ‘unnecessary’ to ‘actually dangerous’. So are synthetic food colors actually that bad? And do they really affect children’s attention and activity levels?

The European parliament has already directed that food products that contain synthetic dyes and colors should carry a warning that consumption will have an “adverse effect on activity and attention in children.”

The FDA is also examining the possible impact of artificial food colors on children’s health with the CSPI (Center for Science in the Public Interest) calling for these colors to be removed; and that warnings be printed on the labels until such time as the colors are removed.

The fact remains that even if one doubt there are harmful effects of artificial food colors, it has to be admitted that there is no nutritional value in these synthetic additives; and that, other than imparting attractive color to the food; they are of no use whatsoever.

Even if one buys the argument that food colors used in the US are absolutely safe, as CSPI Executive Director Michael Jacobson puts it, all that the synthetic colors do, is to make junk food even more appealing to kids than it already is!


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