What is Red 40 food dye?

Over the years, Red 40 dye has been used in countless food products.

In recent years, food coloring has come under fire for its alleged link to various health conditions, and now Americans want to know more about it.

The dye Red 40 is found in several popular foods


The dye Red 40 is found in several popular foodsPhoto credit: Getty

What is Red 40 food coloring?

Red 40 dye, also known as Allura Red, is a synthetic color additive that is Food and Drug Administration (FDA) certified.

It is approved for use in cereals, beverages, gelatin, pudding, dairy and confectionery.

Is Red 40 Food Coloring Safe?

Because Red 40 is FDA certified, most people don’t have a problem with it. However, recent studies show that it may play a role in several health conditions.

A study conducted by McMaster University and published in Nature Communications in December 2022 showed that daily consumption of Red 40 food coloring leads to an increased risk of developing inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

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Lead researcher Professor Waliul Khan called the findings “a significant advance in public health”.

“This study demonstrates significant deleterious effects of Allura Red on gut health and identifies gut serotonin as a critical factor mediating these effects,” Khan wrote at the time.

“These findings have important implications for the prevention and treatment of inflammatory bowel disease.

“What we found is striking and alarming given that this common synthetic food coloring is a possible dietary trigger for IBDs.

“This research is a significant advance in raising public awareness of the potential harms of food coloring that we consume every day.

“The literature suggests that consumption of allura red also affects certain allergies, immune disorders, and behavioral problems in children, such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.”

Some studies have also said there is a link between Red 40 and hyperactivity in children, according to GoodRx.

However, at this time, research on the positive and negative effects of Red 40 is inconclusive, meaning it cannot be proven to be harmful to human health.

Red 40 food coloring is FDA approved in the United States


Red 40 food coloring is FDA approved in the United StatesPhoto credit: Getty

Is Red 40 food coloring banned in other countries?

The purpose of food additives is to help preserve their color, flavor, or texture.

While Red 40 may be approved for use in the United States, other countries have banned it.

According to the AARP, these countries include Norway, Finland, France, Austria and the United Kingdom.

https://www.the-sun.com/health/7233356/what-red-40-food-dye/ What is Red 40 food dye?

Emma James

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