(Mint chocolate chip ice cream, a favorite in our house, should NOT be green. The color is fake)
This post is a follow up to my essay on the Natural Parents Network website http://naturalparentsnetwork.com/artificial-food-coloring-awakening/. Thank you everyone for the abundance of support as well as the well wishes for our son. For some readers my revelation regarding the danger of AFC (artificial food color) was new information. For others it was familiar and you welcomed us to the awareness club. My family’s world is expanding. We are now a member of Feingold as well as pertinent list serves.
I heard from a few people that reading our story alerted you to the realization that AFC intolerance also may be relevant to your family. Intolerance of AFCs, preservatives (BHA, BHT, TBHQ), artificial flavorings and sweeteners (Aspartame otherwise known as NutraSweet) affect most of us. Did you know that these additives are petroleum based? However, their effects are pronounced in allergy children, especially boys. Parents of these kids report the strongest reaction to food additives. Responses can range from hyper activity and focusing issues to aggression, stomach problems and a host of other symptoms.
Since AFCs and the other culprits are legal in the U.S.A. families must be vigilant about avoiding them. If you’re unable to shop at grocery stores that ban artificial food products, stick with organic, preferably locally grown foods. For your aesthetic pleasure there are commercially produced NFCs (natural food colors). If you can’t travel abroad to purchase healthier versions of food products made in the U.S.A. there are brands of naturally flavored / colored and chemical free treats. Take the extra time to cruise the Internet and health oriented stores. We’re having fun creating homemade versions of popular treats. Next on the agenda is experimenting with NFCs.
I told our story in such a public way because I have always believed that knowledge must be passed along. I’m grateful to those who pointed us in the right direction as we traversed this foreign territory. They helped our family solve a mystery. It was hard for our son to go global. After time he realized that he wanted to help others. He also acknowledged that we found his solution because others shared with us therefore we are obligated to do the same.
This is not the end of our AFC story. The journey is just beginning. In addition to modifying our diet and spreading the word, there is advocacy. The FDA and food product corporations need to do the responsible thing. Until they do they’ll be hearing from me.