Avoid These 100 Dangerous Food Additives Causing ADHD, Asthma and Cancer

By Marco Torres

Guest writer for Wake Up World

Food industry additives and colors are one major cause of ADHD, asthma and cancer creating a toxic environment for our children’s health. Even medicines for babies and young children frequently contain these additives banned from foods and drinks and targeted at children under three years of age.

Artificial flavors and colors means it is derived from a chemical made in a laboratory and has no nutritional value. Every single artificial flavor and color in the food industry has some kind of detrimental health effect. These include neurotoxicity, organ, developmental, reproductive toxicity, allergies and cancer.

Two recent British studies found that several food dyes, as well as the common preservative sodium benzoate have an adverse effect on some children’s behavior. Researchers said the increase in ADHD diagnoses could be partly to blame on the preservative.

“It can affect their focus, their concentration. They become more easily distractible, become more impulsive. I think we’re looking at a whole population of kids with skewed immune systems,” said Dr. Kenneth Bock, who wrote a book that supports the theory that food additives could lead to hyperactivity in children.

A Southampton Study in the UK showed that additives cause hyperactivity in children within an hour after consumption. Food additives, especially the artificial colors are made from coal tar derivatives and synthetic chemicals. Within an hour of ingestion, hyperactive behavior is evident.

Cancer and Other Serious Risks from Food Dyes Revealed

Every year, food manufacturers pour 15 million pounds of artificial food dyes into U.S. foods — and that amount only factors in eight different varieties, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI).

In CSPI’s summary of studies on food dyes, you can see that some of the most commonly used food dyes may be linked to numerous forms of cancer. CSPI reported:

“The three most widely used dyes, Red 40, Yellow 5, and Yellow 6, are contaminated with known carcinogens … Another dye, Red 3, has been acknowledged for years by the Food and Drug Administration to be a carcinogen, yet is still in the food supply.”

In their 58-page report, “Food Dyes: A Rainbow of Risks,” CSPI revealed that nine of the food dyes currently approved for use in the United States are linked to health issues ranging from cancer and hyperactivity to allergy-like reactions — and these results were from studies conducted by the chemical industry itself.

For instance, Red # 40, which is the most widely used dye, may accelerate the appearance of immune-system tumors in mice, while also triggering hyperactivity in children.

Blue #2, used in candies, beverages, pet foods and more, was linked to brain tumors. And Yellow 5, used in baked goods, candies, cereal and more, may not only be contaminated with several cancer-causing chemicals, but it’s also linked to hyperactivity, hypersensitivity and other behavioral effects in children.

As CSPI reported:

“Almost all the toxicological studies on dyes were commissioned, conducted, and analyzed by the chemical industry and academic consultants. Ideally, dyes (and other regulated chemicals) would be tested by independent researchers.

Furthermore, virtually all the studies tested individual dyes, whereas many foods and diets contain mixtures of dyes (and other ingredients) that might lead to additive or synergistic effects.

In addition to considerations of organ damage, cancer, birth defects, and allergic reactions, mixtures of dyes (and Yellow 5 tested alone) cause hyperactivity and other behavioral problems in some children.

… Because of those toxicological considerations, including carcinogenicity, hypersensitivity reactions, and behavioral effects, food dyes cannot be considered safe. The FDA should ban food dyes, which serve no purpose other than a cosmetic effect, though quirks in the law make it difficult to do so (the law should be amended to make it no more difficult to ban food colorings than other food additives).

In the meantime, companies voluntarily should replace dyes with safer, natural colorings.”

Artificial preservatives are responsible for causing a host of health problems pertaining to respiratory tract, heart, blood and other. Some are very neurotoxic especially when combined with specific nutrients.

Please look at the ingredient lists before you purchase any processed foods. If you see any of these, don’t buy the product. Continue to educate yourself on the influx of new toxins introduced every year. Eventually, if we investigate enough the answers come. Rule of thumb, if the ingredient list has one chemical or more… it’s one too many.


Additive Number
Name of Food Additive ADHD Asthma Cancer
FD&C Yellow No. 5
102 & E102
Tartrazine (food color) X X X
104 & E104 Quinoline Yellow (food color) X X X
107 & E107 Yellow 2G (food color) X X X
FD&C Yellow No. 6
110 & E110
Sunset Yellow (Yellow food color #6) X X X
120 & E120 Carmines, Cochineal (food color) X X
122 & E122 Azorubine, Carmoisine (food color) X X X
123 & E123 Amaranth (Red food color #2) X X X
124 & E124 Ponceau, Brilliant Scarlet (food color) X X X
FD&C Red No. 3
127 & E127
Erythrosine (Red food color #2) X X X
E128 Red 2G (Red food color) X X X
FD&C Red No. 40
129 & E129
Allura Red AC (food color) X X X
E131 Patent Blue (food color) X X X
FD&C Blue No. 2
132 & E132
Indigotine, Indigo Carmine (food color) X X X
FD&C Blue No. 1
133 & E133
Brilliant Blue (food color) X X X
142 & E142 Acid Brilliant Green, Green S, Food Green (food color) X X
143 Fast Green (food color) X
150 & E150 Caramel (food color) X
151 & E151 Activated Vegetable Carbons, Brilliant Black (food color) X X X
154 Food Brown, Kipper Brown, Brown FK (food color) X X X
155 & E155 Chocolate Brown HT, Brown HT (food color) X X X
160b & E160b Bixin, Norbixin, Annatto Extracts (yellow, red to brown natural colors) X X
E171 Titanium Dioxide, TiO2 (to give foods an opaque color)
more on Titanium Dioxide in comments below ?
E173 Aluminium (preservatives) X
E180 Latol Rubine, Pigment Rubine (preservatives) X X X
200 &
Potassium & Calcium Sorbates ,Sorbic Acid (preservatives) X X
210 & E210 Benzoic Acid (preservatives) X X
211 & E211 Sodium Benzoate (preservatives) X X X
212 & E212 Potassium Benzoate (preservatives) X
213 & E213 Calcium Benzoate (preservatives) X
E214 Ethyl Para Hydroxybenzonate (preservatives) X
E215 Sodium Ethyl Para Hydroxybenzonate (preservatives) X
216 & E216 Propyl P Hydroxybenzonate, Propylparaben (preservatives) X
E217 Sodium Propyl P Hydroxybenzonate (preservatives) X
220 & E220 Sulphur Dioxide also Sulfur dioxide (preservatives) X X
221 & E221 Sodium Sulfite or Sodium Sulphite (preservatives) X
222 Sodium Bisulfite or Sodium Bisulphite (preservatives) X
223 & E223 Sodium Metabisulfite or Sodium Metabisulphite (preservatives) X
224 & E224 Potassium Metabisulphite or Potassium Metabisulfite (preservatives) X
225 & E225 Potassium Sulfite or Potassium Sulphite (preservatives) X
E226 Calcium Sulfite or Calcium Sulphite (preservatives) X
E227 Calcium Hydrogen Sulphite or Calcium Hydrogen Sulfite (preservatives) X
E228 Potassium Bisulfite, Potassium Hydrogen Sulfite or Potassium Bisulphite, Potassium Hydrogen Sulphite (preservatives) X X
E230 Diphenyl, Biphenyl (preservatives) X
E231 Orthophenyl Phenol (preservatives) X
E236 Formic Acid (preservative) X
E239 Hexamine, Hexamethylene Tetramine (preservatives) X
249 & E249 Potassium Nitrate (preservative) X X
250 & E250 Sodium Nitrite (preservative) X X X
251 & E251 Sodium Nitrate (preservative) X X
252 & E252 Potassium Nitrate (preservative) X X
260 & E260 Acetic Acid, Glacial (preservatives) X
280 to 283 Calcium or Potassium or Sodium Propionates, Propionic Acid (preservatives) X X
310 & E310 Propyl Gallate (Synthetic Antioxidant) X X
311 & E311 Octyl Gallate (Synthetic Antioxidant) X
312 & E312 Dodecyl Gallate (Synthetic Antioxidant) X
319 & E319 TBHQ, Tert Butylhydroquinone (Synthetic Antioxidants) X X
320 & E320 Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA) (Synthetic Antioxidants) X X X
321 & E321 Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHT) or Butylhydroxytoluene (Synthetic Antioxidants) X X X
330 & E330 Citric Acid (NOT DANGEROUS if naturally occurring e330 & 330 citric acid additive – but others can contain sulfites and mold.)
407 & E407 Carrageenan (Thickening & Stabilizing Agent) X X
413 & E413 Tragacanth (thickener & Emulsifier) X
414 & E414 Acacia Gum (Food Stabilizer) X
416 Karaya Gum (Laxative, Food Thickener & Emulsifier) X
421 & E421 Mannitol (Artificial Sweetener) X
430 Polyxyethylene Stearate (Emulsifier) X
431 Polyxyl Stearate (Emulsifier) X
E432 – E435 Polyoxyethylene Sorbitan Monostearate (Emulsifiers Gelling Stabilisers Thickeners Agents) X
433 – 436 Polysorbate (Emulsifiers) X
441 & E441 Gelatine (Food Gelling Agent) X
466 Sodium CarboxyMethyl Cellulose X
507 & E507 Hydrochloric Acid (Hydrolyzing Enhancer & Gelatin Production) X
518 & E518 Magnesium Sulphate (Tofu Coagulant) X
536 & E536 Potassium Ferrocyanide (Anti Caking Agent) X
553 & E553 & E553b Talc (Anti Caking, Filling, Softener, Agent) X
620 – 625 MSG Monosodium Glutamate, Glutamic Acid, all Glutamates (Flavour Enhancers) X X X
627 & E627 Disodium Guanylate (Flavour Enhancers) X X
631 & E631 Disodium Inosinate 5 (Flavour Enhancers) X
635 & E635 Disodium Ribonucleotides 5 (Flavour Enhancers) X
903 & E903 Camauba Wax (used in Chewing Gums, Coating and Glazing Agents) X
905 & 905 a,b,c Paraffin and Vaseline, White Mineral Oil (Solvents, Coating and Glazing, Anti Foaming Agents, Lubricant in Chewing Gums) X
924 & E924 Potassium Bromate (Agent used in Bleaching Flour) X
925 & E925 Chlorine (Agent used in Bleaching Flour, Bread Enhancer and Stabiliser) X
926 Chlorine Dioxide (Bleaching Flour and Preservative Agent) X
928 & E928 Benzoyl Peroxide (Bleaching Flour and Bread enhancer Agent) X
950 & E950 Potassium Acesulphame (Sweetener) X
951 Aspartame (Sweetener) X X
952 & E952 Cyclamate and Cyclamic Acid (Sweeteners) X
954 & E954 Saccharine (Sweetener) X
1202 & E1202 Insoluble Polyvinylpyrrolidone Insoluble (Stabiliser and Clarifying Agent added to Wine, Beer, Pharmaceuticals) X
1403 Bleached Starch (Thickener and Stabiliser) X


Recommended articles by Marco Torres:

About the author:

Marco Torres is a research specialist, writer and consumer advocate for healthy lifestyles. He holds degrees in Public Health and Environmental Science, and is a professional speaker on topics such as disease prevention, environmental toxins and health policy.

This article courtesy of Prevent Disease.

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