The power of public petitioning
The fact that American consumers are less protected from chemical food hazards than their European peers has been around for a while. Indeed, why millions of children, pregnant women and adults in America are doomed to ingest potentially health-damaging chemicals for decades when European Union requires mandatory warning labels which drove manufacturers to virtually eliminate artificial colors from the foods designated for European markets?
Recently PepsiCo Inc. has announced a decision to remove a controversial ingredient, brominated vegetable oil, from its Gatorade sports drink in response to customer petition which has gained significant public support. Now another popular petition backed by over 170,000 supporters calls on Kraft Foods to remove artificial colors Yellow 5 and Yellow 6, from its Macaroni & Cheese products.
Let’s take a look what Kraft Foods Mac & Cheese Cheesiest dinner looks like in terms of the Dye Diet approach before and after hypothetical removal of the artificial colors.
DyeDiet Doesn’t Buy It!
As you see, Macaroni & Cheese Cheesiest dinner of Kraft Foods is alike a chemical plant feedstock. Among total 19 ingredients only 10 are nutrients (green segments) a half of which (Vitamins B group) are added in the attempt to compensate (or camouflage) nutrition loss caused by high processing of wheat flour. The rest are 7 non-nutrient chemicals (yellow segments) and two xenobiotic chemicals: artificial colors Yellow 5 and Yellow 6 (red segments). Keep in mind, however that 2 of the 10 nutrients very likely are genetically modified (GM) ingredients often reffered as GMO (see below).
The Dye Diet Calculator helps to avoid risky food
Food additives to avoid:
- Yellow 5 and Yellow 6 artificial colors of azo dye type. According to the FDA specifications, FD&C Yellow No. 5 and FD&C Yellow No. 6 colorants may contain small residual amounts of highly potent human carcinogens such as 4-Aminoazobenzene, 4-Aminobiphenyl, Aniline, Azobenzene, Benzidine, and 1,3-Diphenyltriazene. Also please read the CSPI document Food Dyes: A Rainbow of Risks
- Cheese culture and Enzymes, while belong to category of nutrients, are possible GMO threats that are indicated by flashing warning signs in the calculation results (you have to introduce the product name to see results)
Hypothetical alternative: no artificial colors
Now imagine that Yellow 5 and Yellow 6 are removed from Macaroni Cheese; this turns alarming red-yellow-green diagram to a friendlier yellow-green look:
Accordingly, nutrition went up to DDNF = 0.88. Although it is still rather low nutritional value, at least you will not take health risks posed by xenobiotic chemicals and their carcinogenic impurities (DDFI = 0). This is not too bad for the semi-synthetic food surrogate made of bleached wheat flour. You may carefully eat it once in a while; not every day though. That’s how the DyeDiet Calculator helps you to understand and avoid health hazards of processed food!
Bottom line. Mac and Cheese Cheesiest dinner is another chemical food surrogate to avoid (check with the Dye Diet Calculator) especially by children. From the other hand, removal of the two artificial food colors could convert it to relatively safe processed food. Let’s hope that the above-mentioned petition will be heard and appropriate actions from Kraft Foods will be taken to our satisfaction and healthier life.