The FDA has approved a higher level of a red coloring from tomatoes to supplement or replace the red from crushed bugs. Lycopene is the main pigment of tomato, paprika, grapefruit, and rose hips. Lycopene extracted from tomatoes is authorized within the EU and US as a red food coloring. Regular intakes of lycopene from natural dietary sources in different populations are, according to dietary surveys, estimated to be on average between 0.5 and 5 mg/day, with high exposures up to about 20 mg/day. Lycopene is being studied as a compound to prevent heart disease and cancer.
The color red is important to processed food manufacturers .When it isn’t added to sausages and deli meat, for example, the products might appear gray due to exposure from light and oxygen. Synthetic colors, therefore, often blind us to the real tint of many foods. The reds listed below have been controversial for a long time:
FD and C Red NO 2, Amaranth. Once this was the most widely used red coloring in cosmetics and food. A reddish brown, it was an ingredient in lipsticks, rouges, and other cosmetic as well as maraschino cherries, cereals and deserts. It was banned in 1976 after more than 20 years of controversy among scientists and regulators because of its cancer-causing potential. It is still permitted in food in Europe and Canada.
FD and C Red NO 3 Erythrosin. A cherry red coal-tar derivative was used in toothpaste, canned fruit cocktail as well as many other products. It was determined to be a carcinogen and nerve toxin. It was banned in cosmetics in 1990 but the FDA allows it in food, according to their approved color listing.
FD and C Red . NO. 4. A coal tar dye used in mouthwashes, bath salts, and hair rinses. The FDA banned it in food in 1964 when it was shown to damage the adrenal glands and bladders of dogs. The agency relented and gave it provisional license for use in maraschino cherries. It was banned in all food in 1976 It was also banned in oral medications but is still allowed in externally applied drugs and cosmetics.
FD and C RED NO. 40. Allura Red AC. The coal-tar color is widely used in the cosmetic industry. It was approved in 1971. Allied Chemical has an exclusive patent on it. It is substituted for FD & C Red No. 4 in many cosmetics, food, and drug products. Permanently listed because Allied supplied reproductive data. However, many American scientists feel that the safety of Red No. 40 is far from established particularly because all the tests were conducted by the manufacturer. The European Food Safety Panel concluded in 2009 that while some sensitivity reactions after Allura Red AC intake (such as hives, stuffed nose and asthma) have been reported, mostly when Allura Red AC is taken within mixtures of other synthetic colors, no conclusion on the induction of hypersensitivity by Allura Red AC could be drawn from the limited scientific evidence available. The Panel also notes that sensitive individuals may react at dose levels within the acceptable daily intake. The FDA permanently listed Red No. 40 for use in foods and ingested drugs and in cosmetics— including use around the eye area. The British and European Parliament ruled a warning should be on the label for consumers because studies that show colorings may worsen hyperactivity in children. The UK Food Standards Agency reports manufacturers are cooperating and finding substitutes for synthetic colorings.
Are you seeing red about some red colorings? You do have a choice and a voice to make them fade away.