Monday, April 9, 2012

Red Dye?! That's why I'm so crazy

There is quite a bit of history behind this post. Part of it is a tongue in cheek to my family members because they fear red-dyed foods. Both my husband and my brothers were not allowed near "red" things, like drinks or candies, until they were out on their own. Part is the fact that, even when I won't admit it to said family, my kids are NUTS after eating or drinking something dyed red. 
So, as I stirred the red velvet cupcake batter for Easter I thought maybe I would actually do some research into this phenomenon.
In March the FDA announced they would look into the thought that certain food dyes actually caused changes in behavior in children. There are a few specific food dyes that seem to be linked with this hyperactivity of children. BUT, here is what I find more interesting. These same dyes, Red No. 40, Yellow No. 5 and Yellow No. 6, make up 90 percent of the food dyes on the market. They are found in every kind of junk food out there. So, my question, is it the dye or the cumulative effect of years of eating these substances the culprit?

My children react more to the sugar in the items, I think. Perhaps part of it is psychological on all of our parts as well. They knew I blame "red", I know I blame it, too. So, do I pay attention more after they ingest "red"? Either way I will continue to limit their intake, continue to throw out red jelly beans, and for my own sanity, confiscate the red Starburst.

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