Food Dyes:  What's The Danger and Alternatives

Food Dyes: What's The Danger and Alternatives

Have you ever noticed a difference in your kiddos when they consume something containing food dyes?  If so, you aren't alone. 

We are consuming five times more dyes in our food than in 1955 and 30-40% of our food contains food dyes.  Common dyes we see today are Blue #1 and #2, Red #2, #40, and #3, Green #3 and Yellow #6.  Many have been studied and linked to health issues like tumors  during animal testing and hyperactivity in children.  Southhampton University performed a study were they found an increase in hyperactivity among children ages 3-9 who consumed dyes and a US study published in Science showed that when children consumed dyes their test performance went down.

Dyes are commonly found in sports drinks, candy, cake mixes, toothpaste and yes, vitamins.  Not only do many children's vitamins contain dyes, but many also contain aspartame.  Children who struggle with ADD and ADHD are often even more sensitive to food dyes and should avoid consuming them.

There are alternatives to consuming food dyes, so don't worry. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Stick to unprocessed foods.  Foods that are processed often contain dyes in the US.  Some parts the of the world have asked that companies not include them so Kellogg's and Kraft have special UK products without dyes, but here in the US, we get the dyes.
  • Use all natural vitamins.  Select vitamins that have been colored naturally.  Our Children's Chewable Vitamins are colored with beets, so no artificial dyes to worry about there or yucky aspartame.  Be aware that naturally dyed products will look different and colors will very due to the temperatures they are exposed to. 
  • Read labels carefully.  Foods that have been "Certified Organic" by the USDA are free from dyes but seeing that something was "made with organic ingredients" can still contain food dyes.
  • Check non food labels as well.  Our bodies absorb what we put on our skin in about 20 seconds, so the products we use matter just as much as the food we eat.  Baby lotions and washes often contain dyes as well as bath bombs.  Again, there are safe alternatives like our Foaming Baby Wash and Shampoo and Magnesium Bath Bombs
While food dyes are all around, we do have safe alternatives that we can feel good about.  Food dyes can often appear on product labels by alternative names, so finding a trustworthy company to purchase from who is transparent about ingredients is a great way to reduce the stress of having to research each ingredient. 


 Let's Raise Them Well!