Okay, I have to out myself for occasionally clicking on those AARP emails that appear regularly in my inbox. This one almost demanded that I click through to it (“8 Foods We Eat That Other Countries Ban“).
The information is drawn from “Rich Food, Poor Food,” a new book by Jayson Calton and Mira Carlton.
Here’s the intro to the AARP blog post.
Here’s just one example: Fake coloring that gives those eerie bright hues to boxed mac and cheese, breakfast cereal, candy and soft drinks. Linked to behavioral changes in children, allergies, migraines and possibly cancer, those dyes are banned in several countries plus the United Kingdom — but not in the United States.
In March, two mothers petitioned Kraft to use safer, natural coloring in their mac and cheese products, as the company does in other countries where the dyes are illegal. Kraft said no.
Or how about brominated vegetable oil, or BVO, that’s added to citrus-flavored soda (like Mountain Dew) and sports drinks to make the artificial colors stick to the liquid. BVO contains bromine, which is used as a flame-retardant and has been linked to neurological problems and interference with thyroid hormones.
BVO has been banned in all European Union countries, as well as India and Japan, yet it’s in U.S. products. In January, PepsiCo announced it would no longer use the additive in Gatorade, after consumers complained, but would leave it in Mountain Dew.
I’m not a fanatic about organics and chemicals in food, but these chemicals seem unnecessary and potentially harmful. Is this an area where more regulation is necessary?