Synthetic Food Dyes By Jackie Plum

3216 Words13 Pages
Synthetic Food Dyes
Jackie Plum
Devry University

When my now six-year-old son was three, he was very hyperactive. He could not sit still and was always very emotional. Often, it would take a lot of effort to get him to do anything he was told. There were several times where he needed to be physically restrained in order to get him to calm down. After a few episodes at his preschool, one of the administrators suggested that we monitor his diet and remove synthetic food dyes from it. After 3 days of him not having any food with any synthetic dyes in it, he was a different child. He was calm, easy to handle, and his teachers said he was a real pleasure to have in school. After several months of him not having any synthetic food dyes,
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However, 22% of 92 children that are diagnoses with ADHD are wrongly diagnosed (Lilenfield & Arkowitz, 2013). Many of these false diagnoses and other harmful side effects could be avoided if synthetic food dyes were eliminated from our food and cosmetics. Synthetic food dyes have been shown to cause hyperactivity in some children; as well as, proven to cause some types of cancers in rats and/or mice. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should ban the use of all synthetic food dyes in food and cosmetics

Food dyes are additives that help to give food and other items a more colorful and appealing look. Originally, food dyes were made out of natural ingredients such as fruit juice, vegetables, and in some cases, bugs. However, as time went on, other ways to make food dyes were created. Natural food dyes lead to synthetic coal tar food dyes, and eventually synthetic coal tar food dyes led to petroleum based synthetic food dyes. Synthetic food dye colors certified for food use are Food Drug and Cosmetic (FD&C) Blue No. 1, FD&C Blue No. 2, Citrus Red No. 2, FD&C Green No. 3, Orange B, FD&C Red No. 3, FD&C Red No. 40, FD&C Yellow No. 5, and FD&C Yellow No. 6 (Kobylewski, 2010). Using just these nine dyes, there are over 360,000 different color combinations available.

In order for a synthetic food dye to be used, it must first be tested and approved by the Food and Drug Administration. In
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