Artificial food colors (or color additives) are any dye, pigment or substance that imparts color when it is added to food or drink. Without color additives, colas wouldn’t be brown, margarine wouldn’t be yellow and mint ice cream wouldn’t be green. It is estimated that there are thousands of additives in our food supply ! Color additives are recognized as an important part of practically all processed foods we eat.
According to studies [1-9], artificial food colors may increase inattentiveness, impulsivity, and hyperactivity among young children. They may also harm children’s brains and cause DNA damage in human liver cells. While many international food companies in Europe have taken color additives out of their products, in the rest of the world the situation hasn’t changed.
Please keep in mind that the facts mentioned in this post refer to artificial food colors and not to many of their natural substitutes. To learn more about artificial food colors and their influence, watch this 5-minute video:
 W.-T. Wu, Y.-J. Lin, S.-H. Liou, C.-Y. Yang, K.-F. Cheng, P.-J. Tsai, T.-N. Wu. Brain cancer associated with environmental lead exposure: Evidence from implementation of a National Petrol-Lead Phase-Out Program (PLPOP) in Taiwan between 1979 and 2007. Environ Int 2012 40:97 – 101.
 T. J. Sobotka. 2010. Overview and Evaluation of Proposed Association Between Artificial Food Colors and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD) and Problem Behaviors in Children. Interim Toxicology Review.