Anecdotal evidence is not as reliable as scientific evidence. It's too subjective -- usually coming from parents' observations. But the quantity of anecdotes against artificial food coloring is growing too large to ignore. Below are a few on the Internet. For more stories, click the source links.
On a side note: Some people are allergic to food colors, and some people are sensitive to them. As Jane Hersey, author of Why Can't My Child Behave?, explains "What we deal with in most people is not an allergic response but a sensitivity," says Hersey. "If your family moved to a city that was very polluted, different family members would react differently. One might have an asthmatic attack. Another would get a headache, but you wouldn't say you're allergic to pollution."
Please remember that not all aggressive or hyperactive behaviors can be eliminated by removing artificial food colors and preservatives from the diet. However, these parents show that it can help many children.
Image from Pixabay
The author of The Fitness Blog has posted a video of his child having a tantrum after ingesting too many food colors: When a Temper Tantrum is More than just a Temper Tantrum.
From Baby Center blog
--Since going dye free and preservative free last year, my 12 year old daughter's symptoms of ADHD, depression, asthma, and eczema have all disappeared.
--My partner's very allergic to any red dyes. They give him crippling migraines where is in intense pain and looses his vision for 12-24 hours.
--My son has Aspergers, a form of autism. Food dyes significantly affect his behavior sometimes leading to explosive tantrums. Red dye #40 causes aggression and self injury. Blue #2 and yellow #5 affect his communication and emotional state. Basically, he becomes nasty and grumpy. Unable to tell us how he is really feeling, this behavior leads to tantrums. Food dye is not allowed in my house. Why do I care if other children eat it? Because until people are fully educated on the side effects of the poison they feed their children they are not able to make rational choices.
--Within a month [of removing dyes] my son completely changed. His erratic behavior was gone and he was able to focus a lot more on tasks. His stimming (self stimulating behaviors that you see with Autism) also decreased significantly.
It's been over two months [since removing artificial food colors] and things around here have changed big time and we've only recently realized all the things that have gotten better.
* Bedtime is easier. He “reads” his allotted books, we pray together, and he goes to sleep. He doesn’t get up a million times to tell us something, use the bathroom, or to sneak around the house. He sleeps.
* He doesn’t have leg cramps every night. He was waking with screams and it would take him so long to calm down.
*He can sit at the table and complete his seat work. It's still his least favorite time of the school day, but he does it and doesn't kick, scream, cry, or throw his pencil. He's actually learning.
*And he's reading. He's reading!! It's like a light bulb turned on in the last few weeks and he gets it.
* He doesn’t just kick and hit his brother because he feels like it. Now, there’s a reason. He cares about what happens to his brother instead of just following his impulses.
*He wants to sit with me. He will come up to me and just want to sit. And that's never happened before. He was always too busy moving to be affectionate with anyone.
*He's allowed one hour to play video games on Saturday if he gets his weekly chores done. We set the time and when it rings, he may finish his level and then it's time to turn it off. Instead of screaming, yelling and throwing the remote he says "ok."
--Hyperactivity - Out of control behavior. If I give [my daughter] a typical children's food item that is loaded with dyes, it is like a switch is turned on and she becomes this out of control machine.
Do you have any thoughts or experiences with food colors?
This post is linked to A Humble Bumble's Healthy Tuesday Hop.
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