Food Dye Dangers: A 'Rainbow of Risks'

SkittlesColorful food is fun and festive, but also potentially dangerous if it achieves its hue artificially through food dyes. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) recently released a report that says food dyes pose a "rainbow of risks" including everything from allergies to cancer.

According to CSPI, use of the dyes has increased five-fold since 1955. They are in everything from candy and salad dressing to juice and cereals.

But they don't have to be.


“These synthetic chemicals do absolutely nothing to improve the nutritional quality or safety of foods, but trigger behavior problems in children and, possibly, cancer in anybody,” said CSPI executive director Michael F. Jacobson. “The Food and Drug Administration should ban dyes, which would force the industry to color foods with real food ingredients, not toxic petrochemicals.”

CSPI has asked the FDA to ban all dyes "because the scientific studies do not provide convincing evidence of safety, but do provide significant evidence of harm." 

If there's any chance of a food dye increasing cancer, then I'm all for more boring looking food. Get it out of there! There are also natural colorings that can be used instead.

Yet another reminder that avoiding processed foods and sticking to natural, whole foods -- that happen to come in beautiful array of colors -- is the safest way to go.

Do you want to see the FDA ban food dyes?

Image via *Mickey/Flicker


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