Is Red 40 harmful?

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Allura Red, or Red 40, is a synthetic red coloring that is an azoderivative compound. It is a disodium salt that comes in the form of a dark reddish powder very soluble in water, which is often used in the food industry as a food coloring, having the following code: E 129. Red 40 is used as an additive / coloring in sweets, dairy products, cookies, jelly, seasoning, drinks, desserts, cakes mixes and fruit flavored fillings. It is even used in drugs and cosmetics.

According to a CSPI report, some of the most used food colorings could be related to several forms of cancer, as well as hyperactivity and other behavior problems in children.

This coloring, which is one of the most widely used and consumed, could accelerate the appearance of tumors in the immune system of mice. Also, it causes hypersensitivity reactions (similar to allergy) in some consumers and could cause hyperactivity in children. In the CSPI’s summary of studies about artificial colorings, you can see that some of the most commonly used colorings could be related to several types of cancer. “The three most widely used colorings, Red 40, Yellow 5 and Yellow 6, are contaminated with known carcinogens.”

In some European countries, it is not used as baby food coloring anymore. In some people sensitive to salicylates, allergic reactions have also been shown. In fact, it has been found that when used in large doses, it can cause bladder cancer.

Although some products need some coloring to look more appealing, that’s not a reason for using an artificial coloring that is already proven to be harmful to health. The option is then to use a natural coloring, such as Cochineal Carmine, which does not cause any type of allergy and is very harmless to people’s health.

For more information about these and other colorants please contact us at the following link.



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