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(The New York Times)   First they came for Green 3, and I didn't speak out as I did not eat Jello. They came for Red 40, and I didn't speak out as I did not eat Froot Loops. When they came for Yellow Number 6, Cheetos, there was no one left to speak out   (nytimes.com) divider line
    More: Asinine  
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2011-04-04 08:03:08 AM  
I do believe that this applies mainly to the US.
Living in Italy, there's probably not even one food I eat daily that has artificial colouring.
Italians reject brightly-coloured ice-cream and, outside of the junk food world, there's nothing they eat that is fake-coloured.

Even italian-brand chips are certified to be as natural as possible. And fanta has natural orange juice and no artificial colouring. In fact, it's much less orange in colour than anywhere in America.

That doesn't mean I don't enjoy some planter's cheddar balls every once in a while...
 
2011-04-04 08:17:38 AM  

That Guy in the Dos Equis Commercials: Gigantos: Keep away from my Blue 5. I love giving a bunch of it to my friends on St. Patrick's day and hearing what happens later on in the day.

I hope I have a kindred spirit.

I used to manage big chain stores. I won't mention the name, but it rhymes with Hall*Fart.

I was walking the bakery one morning and the bakery manager wondered out loud if drinking straight shots of that dye they used in icing would affect your urine color.

I drank blue, he did red.

No difference in color to our pee, even hours later. Sad face.

But the next morning, after I had even forgotten about it, I produced the brightest green excrement in the history of man.

I made my now ex-wife look at it. And even though she is a tightass about that kind of thing, she broke out laughing and asked me what the hell I was thinking.

CSB


My son did this with fruit roll ups when he was smaller 4-5ish. After that age he didn't get them any more.

Fresh blueberries also can cause colorful poo on babies.
 
2011-04-04 08:21:01 AM  

theotherbilly: I want to talk about pickles for a minute.


Okay, just remember, you brought it up.
(new window)
 
2011-04-04 08:26:12 AM  
LOL Name your poison.
 
2011-04-04 08:30:08 AM  
On the other hand, dyes increase the lifespan of roundworms:

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature09873.ht​ml

On the other hand, roundworms don't have hands.
 
2011-04-04 08:33:38 AM  

LincolnLogolas: Nothing wrong with red 40, unless you're Jewish. They tend to now call it "carmine extract" on labels now, to get Away from the synthetic sounding name. It's just bug juice. There's another red food dye, forget what they call it in food, I know it as lac. Also a bug extract. I'd trust the bug extracts more than some of the crazy synthetics.


content.internetvideoarchive.comView Full Size


Did someone mention bug juice?
 
2011-04-04 08:39:13 AM  
How about we stop selling/buying/eating fake "food" that requires artificial colors to look appealing?

I think they should outlaw the stuff if for no other reason than that people might see what they're actually eating and choose not to.
 
2011-04-04 08:46:58 AM  

tfm_copycat: I do believe that this applies mainly to the US.
Living in Italy, there's probably not even one food I eat daily that has artificial colouring.
Italians reject brightly-coloured ice-cream and, outside of the junk food world, there's nothing they eat that is fake-coloured.

Even italian-brand chips are certified to be as natural as possible. And fanta has natural orange juice and no artificial colouring. In fact, it's much less orange in colour than anywhere in America.

That doesn't mean I don't enjoy some planter's cheddar balls every once in a while...


I'm sure there isn't any relationship to diet and the myriad of bizarre ailments that plague most Americans. Nope.


cjoshuav: How about we stop selling/buying/eating fake "food" that requires artificial colors to look appealing?

I think they should outlaw the stuff if for no other reason than that people might see what they're actually eating and choose not to.


But, think of all the corporations and physicians that are making money due to these choices.
 
2011-04-04 08:52:53 AM  

ox45tallboy: theotherbilly: I want to talk about pickles for a minute.

Okay, just remember, you brought it up. (new window)


I blacked out halfway through that, then woke up covered in vomit.
 
2011-04-04 09:01:26 AM  
Food colourings are a good thing when force-fed by the bucketload to hyperactive snowflakes. If they are bouncing around off the walls and ceiling, that's some fine excercising, Lou, and they're not getting all fatassed on McDonalds.
 
2011-04-04 09:02:16 AM  
The Center for Science in the Public Interest is not.
 
2011-04-04 09:06:26 AM  

nationalreview.comView Full Size


Red Dawn, standing by

 
2011-04-04 09:20:30 AM  

Sim Tree: It's not just me, but a whole class of people, and possibly most of the children on the entire planet, but the side effects are subtle, and slow to onset, so are mostly ignored. Nevermind that several other industrialized nations have banned red 40 outright, and we can't even get an allergy warning in the corner.


Why would there be an allergy warning when people don't suffer allergic reactions? Allergies are life threatening, sensitivities are apparently "subtle," "slow to onset," and "mostly ignored."
 
2011-04-04 09:26:45 AM  
[image from secondstringblog.com too old to be available]

Big Red Machine, standing by.

 
2011-04-04 09:27:42 AM  
cdn3.iofferphoto.comView Full Size

99 Red Balloons standing by

 
2011-04-04 09:27:50 AM  
Artificial yellows make me break out in hives. I'd be very happy if they banned them.
 
2011-04-04 09:30:42 AM  
Is it just me, or has a large part of medical (specifically dietary) science turned into crap? No self-respecting scientist should go around saying "dyes that are used in some foods might worsen hyperactivity in some children". I don't think there's any other branch of science that sets the bar low enough that you don't actually have to prove anything.
 
2011-04-04 09:30:47 AM  

jessicat: Just as long as they don't fark up the hot cheetos with lime. Make em gray. They all taste the same in the dark.


What, they make flaming hot cheetos with lime? Must find.
 
2011-04-04 09:32:47 AM  

theotherbilly: ox45tallboy: theotherbilly: I want to talk about pickles for a minute.

Okay, just remember, you brought it up. (new window)

I blacked out halfway through that, then woke up covered in vomit.


That's the surprise.
 
2011-04-04 09:38:22 AM  
I had a large blue slushie on a long drive home one night. Then had a dentist appointment the next morning. They were amused that the blue worked like a revealing tablet and made cleaning easier. Later that day I had a brilliant blue #2, I'm not sure if I would have remembered why if I had not explained the blue teeth to the detist.

/CSB
 
2011-04-04 09:40:29 AM  
So big corporations are tricking me into thinking that processed food tastes good? I'm truly shocked.
 
2011-04-04 09:41:26 AM  

tfm_copycat: Italians reject brightly-coloured ice-cream and, outside of the junk food world, there's nothing they eat that is fake-coloured.


But they don't mind brightly coloured people, I guess.

static.thehollywoodgossip.comView Full Size


/Yah, I know, I know, she's not really Italian...
 
2011-04-04 09:45:16 AM  

Froman: Or we could just start eating real food, and that includes snack food


Indeed. If the food in question has some natural flavoring agents in it, odds are it won't be completely grey anyway.

Case in point: Cheetos. You can get puffed corn cheese crisp things (i.e. Cheetos, just not the brand name) made with just cheese, and they're pale yellow or yellowy white. They look... cheesy. They taste like cheese, nothing gross about it. Lots of cheese is pale yellow and you expect THAT to taste like cheese, don't ya?

Same with Jello. I don't eat Jello, but do make various desserts that are jelled, usually by boiling up a bunch of stuff and then adding agar-agar. Well, the juice before jelling has color in it, from the fruit or tea or whatever it is. If it's got milk in it (cow, coconut, soy or other) it will be opaque white. Looks tasty.

Cereal? What's wrong with normal grain color, even if you're putting sugar in it so it's a sweet cereal?

The whole "hot dogs would be grey!" well yeah, sausages often are!

As a kid it was fun to sometimes dye pancakes on purpose, though. The oddness of them being blue was just cool.
 
2011-04-04 09:46:39 AM  
Oh, I'm also sensitive to MSG (MonoSodiumGlutenate). It causes cramping an diareah about 30 minutes after eating. It makes going out to eat at unfamiliar restraunts an adventure. Occasionally I have the reaction without being able to find where I had MSG. Perhaps I'll need to look for Yellow 5, Yellow 6, and Red 40. Though once it was just plain celery, and I couldnt find any information on what might be used to process it.

/Second CSB.
 
2011-04-04 09:46:46 AM  

cptjeff: Why the fark do we need any of these again?

Oh yeah- if we didn't use them, the larger populace would realize that what we eat is not produced from the natural ingredients supposed at all, but reprocessed corn flavored to taste like those natural things.


\This post brought to you by Kraft Guacamole.
\\Now with 100% less avocados!
\\\Yes, it exists. Or did.


It's not up to you.
 
2011-04-04 09:48:55 AM  

TheGogmagog: I had a large blue slushie on a long drive home one night. Then had a dentist appointment the next morning. They were amused that the blue worked like a revealing tablet and made cleaning easier. Later that day I had a brilliant blue #2, I'm not sure if I would have remembered why if I had not explained the blue teeth to the detist.

/CSB


My office had some party a few years ago with a cake, background icing was white but it had balloons drawn on that were just HUGE globs of really darkly colored icing. Many were blue, so blue it was almost black, and there were also orange, red, etc.

Well, the icing tasted pretty good so people ate the balloon globs.

Dyed their mouths something crazy. Most people didn't much care but the secretary was rather horrified, for the rest of the day she was sitting there in the front office with completely blue teeth/mouth.

As far as I know though, no other effects.
 
2011-04-04 09:51:43 AM  

itazurakko: Dyed their mouths something crazy. Most people didn't much care but the secretary was rather horrified, for the rest of the day she was sitting there in the front office with completely blue teeth/mouth.

As far as I know though, no other effects.


How do you know there were no other effects? Did you ask her about her poo?

/that's a great ice breaker/conversation starter
 
2011-04-04 09:54:24 AM  
img141.imageshack.usView Full Size

REDЯUM standing by.

 
2011-04-04 10:00:18 AM  

Chair5768: Red two standing by.


*whisper* thank you.
 
2011-04-04 10:04:42 AM  
How about if people don't want to eat food with artificial colors, flavors, dyes, etc they don't buy preprocessed cr*p food? Why does the gov'ment have to step in and save everyone from themselves? How about we let people decide what they want to eat? I have been cutting away at the preprocessed food slowly but surely, and in general have been losing weight, feeling better, having better tasting food, and a lower grocery bill. That said, I still love m&m's and skittles. Everyone has a weakness. Anyone who still wants their cheetoes, buy them. If you want healthy buy healthier. But that wouldn't work because it involves responsibility on the part of the consumer.
 
2011-04-04 10:11:16 AM  
"Color is such a crucial part of the eating experience that banning dyes would take much of the pleasure out of life," said Kantha Shelke, a food chemist and spokeswoman for the Institute of Food Technologists.

She sounds unbiased.
 
2011-04-04 10:12:03 AM  
Natural Cheetos are awesome. Screw the neon yellow garbage, these taste like, you know, actual food.

/Allergic to yellow dye and would love for it all to go the fark away. It's ridiculous how we can't just make natural coloring and flavoring for food and have to get this artificial crap made from synthetic sources.
 
2011-04-04 10:15:47 AM  

Gothnet:
There's a difference somewhere.

My brother had an allergy to Sunset Yellow and Tartrazineand they would send him absolutely mental.

Yes, he was a problem child anyway and it wasn't the only trigger, *but* if you gave him green candy instead of yellow/orange candy he was fine. You could pack him to the eyeballs with sugar, and yes he'd get a bit hyper, but it was nothing like the running-screaming-crying-shouting-jumping-bawling monster he'd turn into given something with sunset yellow or tartrazine in it.

So these things do happen. I'm not going to get into any sort of natural/artifical debate, but sometimes these colours do do things over and above "being a kid"


Alright, I'm not looking for a debate either (it'd be the same as arguing over natural/artificial breasts, I'm sure). I have no expertise in these areas which is why I asked and my interest is more than a little piqued. Anecdotal evidence from a farker is enough to tell me to do some research into it.

clockwork_biafra:

Probably because there is very little empirical evidence that sugar causes hyperactivity, ESPECIALLY in children with ADHD (but MUCH evidence that any perceived change in behaviour is due to the EXPECTATION that sugar will cause hyperactivity).


Interesting. To The GOOGLE.
 
2011-04-04 10:16:30 AM  
When I want colour, I go to an art gallery, watch a sunset, or turn on a movie on the brand new blu-ray player I got for my birthday this year.

When I want food, I eat actual food. If it has ingredients I don't understand or can't pronounce, I don't buy it.
 
2011-04-04 10:20:18 AM  

summersa74: Gothnet: Buzzerguy: . This consumer friendly article (new window, PDF) shows a few examples. In the USA, McDonald's makes their strawberry "sundae" red by using Red #40.

From your link - "Why should Americans continue to consume these synthetic dyes when many multinational companies are phasing them out elsewhere?" asked CSPI director Michael Jacobson.


Why Michael? Let me tell you.

Because we're number 1!
Because if we stop the hippies have won!
Because "Natural" and "Organic" food is for elitist hipster douchebags!
Because if you have an allergic reaction you're a giant pussy!
Because the gubmit can stay out my cheetos! From my cold, dead, orange hands!
Because europe's full of goddamn socialists!

What more reason and evidence do you need Mr un-patriotic head of the CSPI? Go back to Cuba.

One non-snarky reason for you:

Who the flying fark are they to tell others what they can or can't eat or drink. The CSPI is no better than the the people who want to ban tobacco, or the jackasses at PETA, or the people at MADD who don't think any alcoholic beverage should taste good.


So why hang around and biatch? The world is full of places where a bootstrappy, Galtian superman such as yourself can be free of the meddling of do-gooder "scientist" types.
May I suggest Somalia, or perhaps Antarctica?
 
2011-04-04 10:37:04 AM  

itazurakko: The whole "hot dogs would be grey!" well yeah, sausages often are!


They already have grey hot dogs. They're called white hots.

i659.photobucket.comView Full Size


/Rochester thing
//GIS for "white hot dog" returns a disturbing number of photos of Betty White eating a hot dog.
 
2011-04-04 10:45:07 AM  

farm6.static.flickr.comView Full Size

Red Line standing by.

 
2011-04-04 10:53:09 AM  
We like brightly colored foods because in nature, bright color indicates good-for-you qualities such as freshness and vitamins.

Chee-tos are naturally gross colored? OMG Guess what? Chee-tos are bad for you. Bad for you food, should in fact look bad.

Not trying to say that there's any good science behind banning artificial colors, but common sense says it's just a workaround for a bug in our brain that leaves us vulnerable to being tricked into thinking things are good when they aren't.
 
2011-04-04 10:53:58 AM  

Who'stheBossisNotaFood: How about if people don't want to eat food with artificial colors, flavors, dyes, etc they don't buy preprocessed cr*p food? Why does the gov'ment have to step in and save everyone from themselves? How about we let people decide what they want to eat? I have been cutting away at the preprocessed food slowly but surely, and in general have been losing weight, feeling better, having better tasting food, and a lower grocery bill. That said, I still love m&m's and skittles. Everyone has a weakness. Anyone who still wants their cheetoes, buy them. If you want healthy buy healthier. But that wouldn't work because it involves responsibility on the part of the consumer.


Even with all-natural flavourings cheetos would still be unhealthy.

This is not about taking away your farking indulgences ferchrissakes!

It's about at least labelling stuff that is a direct negative on some people's health, so that they have a choice too. And if labelling what's in your product means people won't buy it so you have to change to a less harmful set of ingredients then so be it.

Nobody's going to raid your house and take you frickin skittles.
 
2011-04-04 10:54:33 AM  
Americans would die of starvation without artificially colored food.
 
2011-04-04 11:01:18 AM  

MightySlam: itazurakko: The whole "hot dogs would be grey!" well yeah, sausages often are!

They already have grey hot dogs. They're called white hots.

/Rochester thing
//GIS for "white hot dog" returns a disturbing number of photos of Betty White eating a hot dog.


Mmm... I think I'll have a white hot garbage plate and a pop for lunch. While driving through the can of worms. During a lake-effect snow warning.
 
2011-04-04 11:02:17 AM  

Sim Tree: It's not just me, but a whole class of people, and possibly most of the children on the entire planet, but the side effects are subtle, and slow to onset, so are mostly ignored. Nevermind that several other industrialized nations have banned red 40 outright, and we can't even get an allergy warning in the corner.

Sorry it's just the article has got on my bad side; it's a prime example of "did not do the research"; they merely took an obviously biased press release and rewrote it as an article, saying that color adds value to foods. Well yes, but there are other colors that aren't actually poisonous, which could be equally valuable in foods, which the article itself completely ignores! As if any food that was not absolutely neon hot pink would be no good; which is why all our food today looks similar to 'froot-roll-ups'. It's madness! (Sparta).

Then at the end, instead of approaching this argument using any logic whatsoever, they only quote people saying 'Well, if we hadn't started using red 40 sprinkles, it wouldn't be a cupcake'. If they'd quoted someone saying 'well, we used to have a wheelchair ramp, but we took it out so the front looks pretty' they'd have his head on a platter! Yet they've effectively banned an equal portion of their potential customers, and then stand around saying "duh", wondering why their sales suddenly drop.


I really can't imagine that the people sensitive to Red 40 is as big a group as you claim. I don't know a single person with that sensitivity or even heard about it before this article.

Honestly, quit trying to legislate what the rest of us eat to suit your need. If you can't eat Red 40, then deal with it and choose foods that don't have it. Don't eat processed food that has even the possibility of having the chemical in it.

I have a caffeine sensitivity as do a bunch of people and it also makes kids hyperactive (and causes health issues in high amounts), but you don't see me pushing to abolish caffeine for food production. I just avoid it and live my life. Doing otherwise would be douchebaggery at its finest.
 
2011-04-04 11:04:07 AM  

GranoblasticMan: That Guy in the Dos Equis Commercials: Gigantos: Keep away from my Blue 5. I love giving a bunch of it to my friends on St. Patrick's day and hearing what happens later on in the day.

I hope I have a kindred spirit.

I used to manage big chain stores. I won't mention the name, but it rhymes with Hall*Fart.

I was walking the bakery one morning and the bakery manager wondered out loud if drinking straight shots of that dye they used in icing would affect your urine color.

I drank blue, he did red.

No difference in color to our pee, even hours later. Sad face.

But the next morning, after I had even forgotten about it, I produced the brightest green excrement in the history of man.

I made my now ex-wife look at it. And even though she is a tightass about that kind of thing, she broke out laughing and asked me what the hell I was thinking.

CSB


Fruity Pebbles do the same thing to me.
 
2011-04-04 11:12:29 AM  

hailin: I really can't imagine that the people sensitive to Red 40 is as big a group as you claim. I don't know a single person with that sensitivity or even heard about it before this article.


Read the wikipedia page on Red 40 -

"The study found increased levels of hyperactivity and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and lower IQs were observed in children consuming the chemicals."

So it's bad for kids, it's not 'good' for anyone and there are replacements available. Seems a cut and dried positive for society to get rid of them, IMHO.
 
2011-04-04 11:13:40 AM  
I have an allergy (not a sensitivity, a god damn positive blood and scratch test allergy) to turmeric, and you can take my far-less allergenic yellow 5 and 6 from my cold, dead, hands.
 
2011-04-04 11:16:10 AM  
I think they should remove all artificial coloring from food. I know I'd eat less.
 
2011-04-04 11:16:45 AM  
If the food you eat has to be colored by scientists, then it's not really food.
 
2011-04-04 11:17:35 AM  
I'm sorry to be "that guy," but artificial dyes are not making you, your neighbor's kid or anyone else hyperactive. The implication seems to be that some of these dyes are acting as pyschomotor stimulants, but that simply is not the case. Before psychoactive drugs got such a bad wrap in the media, legions of scientists working for pharmaceutical companies and universities developed literally thousands of stimulants, but these dyes are not among them. Studies such as the one from last week linking dyes to hyperactivity prove correlation and nothing else. If you think you feel hyper after eating these dyes, you are experiencing the power of suggestion. The placebo effect is measurable and real.
 
2011-04-04 11:20:25 AM  

count chocula: legions of scientists working for pharmaceutical companies and universities developed literally thousands of stimulants, but these dyes are not among them.



So wait, because they weren't specifically developed as stimulants, they couldn't possibly have that effect?

FAIL.
 
2011-04-04 11:21:13 AM  

Gothnet: So it's bad for kids, it's not 'good' for anyone and there are replacements available. Seems a cut and dried positive for society to get rid of them, IMHO.


The exact same thing can be said about caffeine, but no one seems to be ready to cut that.

If you don't want to feed it to your kids, guess what? THEN DON'T BUY IT! Food is already getting expensive with gas prices going up. Legislating to make food even more expensive right now is stupid.

Last time I checked, natural fruits, natural vegetables, natural dairy products, natural meat products and whole grains don't have artificial dyes. You get what you deserve with the processed crap.
 
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