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Every year food manufacturers spend million of dollars on artificial food dyes. As of July 2010, the European Union has made it mandatory for most foods containing artificial food dyes to come with warning labels, and the British Government has also asked that food manufacturers remove most artificial colors from foods.

This practice has not been implemented by most other countries.According to a CSPI report, some of the most commonly used food dyes may be linked to numerous forms of cancer, along with hyperactivity and other behavioural problems.

•  Blue #1 (Brilliant Blue)
Studies suggest the possibility that Blue 1 caused kidney tumors in mice. Banned in Norway, Finland, and France. May cause chromosomal damage. It is found in baked goods, beverages, desert powders, candies, cereal, drugs, and other products.

•    Blue #2 (Indigo Carmine)
Causes a statistically significant incidence of tumors, particularly brain gliomas, in male rats.
It is found in colored beverages, candies, pet food, & other food and drugs.

•   Citrus Red #2
It’s toxic to rodents at modest levels and caused tumors of the urinary bladder and possibly other organs.
It is present in skins of Florida oranges.

•   Green #3 (Fast Green)
Caused significant increases in bladder and testes tumors in male rats.
It is found in Drugs, personal care products, cosmetic products except in eye area, candies, beverages, ice cream, sorbet, ingested drugs, lipsticks, and externally applied cosmetics.

•    Red #3 (Erythrosine)
Recognized in 1990 by the FDA as a thyroid carcinogen in animals and is banned in cosmetics and externally applied drugs.
It is found in sausage casings, oral medication, maraschino cherries, baked goods, and candies.

•    Red #40 (Allura Red)
This is the most-widely used and consumed dye. It may accelerate the appearance of immune system tumors in mice. It also causes hypersensitivity (allergy-like) reactions in some consumers and might trigger hyperactivity in children.
It is found in Beverages, bakery goods, dessert powders, candies, cereals, foods, drugs, and cosmetics.

•   Yellow #5 (Tartrazine)
Yellow 5 causes sometimes-severe hypersensitivity reactions and might trigger hyperactivity and other behavioral effects in children.
It is found in Pet foods, numerous bakery goods, beverages, dessert powders, candies, cereals, gelatin desserts, and many other foods, as well as pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.

•   Yellow #6 (Sunset Yellow)
Caused adrenal tumors in animals and occasionally causes severe hypersensitivity reactions.
It is found in Color bakery goods, cereals, beverages, dessert powders, candies, gelatin deserts, sausage, cosmetics, and drugs.

So stick to whole fresh foods and avoid processed foods to steer clear of these artificial food colours.

Sources:

http://foodmatters.tv/articles-1/top-10-food-additives-to-avoid

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/02/24/are-you-or-your-family-eating-toxic-food-dyes.aspx

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