Artificial Food Coloring Side Effects

By Adriane Marie •  Updated: 11/22/22 •  7 min read

What are artificial food coloring side effects every ethical consumer must know? Here are artificial food coloring pros and cons and how buying it will impact your health, the environment, animals and laborers. 

artificial food coloring benefits and side effects

Food is something we consume every day. If you’re like me, you do all the research you can to make sure you don’t hurt yourself, the planet, animals or others when shopping. As an ethical consumer myself, I am giving you all the info I’ve found on artificial food coloring side effects.

You are going to learn all about artificial food coloring side effects. This will include potential risks, sustainability, if artificial food coloring is vegan or impacts animals in other ways, and much more. 

After learning if artificial food coloring is good or bad for you, the environment, animals and human rights, you will be able to make the best choices you can the next time you buy food.

This post is all about artificial food coloring benefits and side effects that every ethical consumer should know.

Top Artificial Food Coloring Benefits And Side Effects

HEALTH

Artificial food coloring is…

ENVIRONMENT

Destruction: high, most synthetic food dyes are derived from petroleum, or crude oil

Artificial food coloring is…

ANIMALS

Kills: possibly insects, some dyes are derived from animals like beetles and insects, while other dyes are synthetically made

Harms: possibly insects, some dyes are derived from animals like beetles and insects, while other dyes are synthetically made

Indirectly kills or harms: possibly wildlife and ecosystems

Artificial food coloring…

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11/27/2022 11:04 pm GMT

artificial food coloring is acidic.

acidic foods and alkaline diet to improve ph levels

Is artificial food coloring alkaline or acidic? Artificial food coloring is acidic, along with most other unnatural, processed foods.

When you eat food, it breaks down to an ash residue that can be neutral, acidic or alkaline. Minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, zinc, silver, copper and iron produce an alkaline ash; whereas sulfur, phosphorus, chlorine and iodine, which are found in meat, coffee, dairy and alcohol, leave an acid ash.

Going alkaline easier than ever with this: Acidic and Alkaline Foods List

artificial food coloring is likely gluten free.

gluten free foods and what to eat on a gluten free diet

Is artificial food coloring gluten free? Yes, artificial food coloring is likely gluten free.

While celiac disease may not be as rampant as many marketing trends lead us to believe, you may have a gluten sensitivity…

Celiac and gluten sensitivity symptoms are similar and may include:

There are hundreds of potential symptoms, many of which are also symptoms of other conditions.

Going gluten-free easier than ever with this: Gluten and Gluten Free Foods List

artificial food coloring is not a common food allergen.

the most common food allergens include milk, wheat, soy, fish, tree nuts, peanuts, eggs and crustaceans

Is artificial food coloring a common food allergen? No, artificial food coloring is not a common food allergen. Some people may experience allergic reactions to artificial food coloring but it is relatively rare by comparison.

A group of the eight major allergenic foods, AKA the Big-8, include:

These foods account for about 90% of all food allergies in the United States.

Severe food allergies can be life threatening. Following ingestion of a food allergen, a person with food allergies can experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Persons may still be allergic to and have serious reactions to foods other than the eight foods identified by the law.

Be aware of common dietary restrictions and food allergens with this: The Big 8 Most Common Food Allergens List

artificial food coloring is unsustainable.

sustainable shopping, for eco friendly brands and products good for the environment

Overall, is artificial food coloring eco friendly and sustainable?

Artificial food coloring production is relatively unsustainable. Most synthetic food dyes are derived from petroleum, or crude oil.

A 2018 Oxford University study – which is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet – found that ‘avoiding meat and dairy is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on Earth’ as animal farming provides just 18% of calories but takes up 83% of our farmland.

Consuming animal products and byproducts is not environmentally friendly and is one of the worst things for the Earth. Not only is meat production wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution. The industry is one of the biggest causes of climate change.

A 2010 United Nations report said that a global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world the worst impacts of climate change.

Read more about ‘What Makes Food Sustainable Or Unsustainable?’

artificial food coloring may or may not be vegan.

vegan brands and companies that sell vegan products

Is artificial food coloring vegan? Possibly. Artificial food coloring may or may not be vegan. Some dyes are derived from animals like beetles and insects, while other dyes are synthetically made.

Because we cannot see for ourselves how these animals live and what they endure does not mean it isn’t happening. The meat, poultry and dairy industries do everything they can to distance us from knowing how our food comes to be in order to keep us in the dark about what we support each time we buy animal derived products and byproducts.

Go vegan for animals!

It’s the best way to help animals and it’s not as difficult as you may think. Speak for animals with your actions, for they cannot speak at all.

Going vegan is easier than ever, at a glance with this: Vegan and Non Vegan Foods List

artificial food coloring may have labor issues and human rights concerns.

labor rights, human rights and workers rights issues

Is artificial food coloring a product that has labor issues? At this time, there are no reports of worker mistreatment regarding artificial food coloring production but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. Artificial food coloring may or may not have labor issues.

Did you know the single largest employer in the world is agriculture? The labor involved behind each and every product cannot go unrecognized. 

Sadly, many labor concerns exist around the world in both developed and developing countries. We must be vigilant to ensure what we buy is not contributing to industries that are unfair to their valuable workers. Some known problems include workplace health and safety, child labor, gender inequality, inadequate pay, wage theft and exploitation. Workers can even be experience harassment, humiliation and violence and unfair employers often fail to provide laborers with access to shade, drinking water, restrooms and breaks. Consequently, laborers can face nausea, dizziness, heat exhaustion, dehydration and heat stroke -the leading cause of farmworker death! 

Such mistreatment is like modern day slavery. Workers are often afraid to report issues because they fear it will result in losing their jobs or deportation. 

Fair trade organizations fight to ensure better social, environmental and economic standards. 

We can improve people’s lives with foods we eat every day simply by buying products that are certified fair trade.

Be sure to read up on this list of ‘Foods You Should Always Buy Fair Trade

This post was all about artificial food coloring benefits and side effects.

Sources:

Color Additives History | FDA – US Food and Drug Administration

Color Additives Questions and Answers for Consumers | FDA

DIET AND NUTRITION: The Artificial Food Dye Blues – NCBI

Adriane Marie

Grocery Guru, Material Maven, Conscious Consumer Connoisseur. I organize ethical info for us to comprehensively see how purchases impact people, animals and the planet. I hope you find HEALabel helpful! Use it for personal and global improvement and empowerment.