This blog was written by Veronica Hofmann. Meet our blogging fitness specialists at the NIFS website.
Many of you have probably heard or read the buzz about the FDA considering a ban on artificial food coloring. There have been warnings of these dyes possibly contributing to ADHD in children. Many parents claim that after their children ingest the dye their behavior changes. The FDA recently voted not to ban these dyes, stating they need to research further as to the possible connection between the dye and hyperactivity.
Many parents are surprised by this decision—mostly the health conscious who realize that any ingredient that is not natural is just not good for our children. The problem is that most parents who feed their children a diet of whole foods stay away from products that include these dyes already. But there are many people who don’t realize the importance of a proper diet. This makes me think that the bigger problem is education on proper diet, not singling out one specific item.
This leads me to the question of whether or not we want the government making decisions on our food. In my opinion it would be a good thing because as a mother who tries her best to keep artificial colors out of my child’s diet there is absolutely no way to control this when they are at school, with friends or grandparents—often the worst offenders! No, I am not in favor of governmental control; but if the ingredient is not doing anything good and is found in kid friendly, cheap, and easily accessible foods, it may not be a bad thing to have it banned from the market.
Will this ever happen? Who knows? So in the meantime it is important to spread the word about healthy diets for everyone! We should start focusing on what to eat rather than what not to eat, and try to make the best nutrition decisions we can. I cringe when my little one bites into a ridiculously colored cake, cupcake, or candy but it is not a normal occurrence so until it is banned we will have to be flexible and pray it does not cause a complete meltdown.
This topic would be a great conversation starter for your worksite wellness program. Get the chatter started and it will travel.