At least 60 food additives used in our foods which are questionable in terms of safety, or at worse, known to be harmful. This has been highlighted by a campaign- see the link: http://www.additivealert.com.au/
It is wise to avoid as many food additives as you can. Packet and processed foods all have additives. Beware! I advocate a “no packet food diet!”
Food additive concerns of the big six
These are the food additive, food colorings that have been shown tacos the biggest issues – and there are calls for these to be banned. As a result of the research below, these 6 colours are now being removed from ALL foods in the UK by the end of 2009. Please keep your unnecessary food additives down as much as practical.
These are the E numbers to look out for: 102, 104, 110, 122, 124, and 129.
6 colours could cause hyperactivity in children
Studies from the University of Southampton UK (2007) have confirmed that these 6 colours could cause hyperactivity in children. See link:http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140673607613063/abstract
Background: We undertook a randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, crossover trial to test whether intake of artificial food colour and additives (AFCA) affected childhood behaviour.
Methods: 153 3-year-old and 144 8/9-year-old children were included in the study. The challenge drink contained sodium benzoate and one of two AFCA mixes (A or B) or a placebo mix. The main outcome measure was a global hyperactivity aggregate (GHA), based on aggregated z-scores of observed behaviours and ratings by teachers and parents, plus, for 8/9-year-old children, a computerised test of attention. This clinical trial is registered with Current Controlled Trials (registration number ISRCTN74481308). Analysis was per protocol.
Findings: 16 3-year-old children and 14 8/9-year-old children did not complete the study, for reasons unrelated to childhood behaviour. Mix A had a significantly adverse effect compared with placebo in GHA for all 3-year-old children (effect size 0·20 [95% CI 0·01–0·39], p=0·044) but not mix B versus placebo. This result persisted when analysis was restricted to 3-year-old children who consumed more than 85% of juice and had no missing data (0·32 [0·05–0·60], p=0·02). 8/9-year-old children showed a significantly adverse effect when given mix A (0·12 [0·02–0·23], p=0·023) or mix B (0·17 [0·07–0·28], p=0·001) when analysis was restricted to those children consuming at least 85% of drinks with no missing data.
Interpretation: Artificial colours or a sodium benzoate preservative (or both) in the diet result in increased hyperactivity in 3-year-old and 8/9-year-old children in the general population.