Here’s a list of food preservatives and colorings that could aggravate attention problems, although none of them (with the exception of Yellow No. 5) have been studied alone in humans. You can also look up the dyes in a number of products at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy website.
Blue No. 1
Also known as: Brilliant blue
What it is: A food coloring
Where you can find it: Frito-Lay Sun Chips French Onion and other Frito-Lay products; some Yoplait products; some JELL-O dessert products; Fruity Cheerios; Trix; Froot-Loops; Apple Jacks; Quaker CapN Crunchs Crunch Berries; some Pop-Tarts products; some Oscar Mayer Lunchables; Duncan Hines Whipped Frosting Chocolate; Edys ice cream products; Skittles candies; Jolly Ranchers Screaming Sours Soft & Chew Candy; Eclipse gum; Fanta Grape
Blue No. 2
Also known as: Indigotine
What it is: A food coloring
Where you can find it: Froot-Loops; Post Fruity Pebbles; Pop-Tarts products; Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe Strawberry Supreme Premium Cake Mix; Betty Crocker Frosting Rich & Creamy Cherry; M&Ms Milk Chocolate Candies; M&Ms Milk Chocolate Peanut Candies; Wonka Nerds Grape/Strawberry; pet foods
Green No. 3
What it is: A food coloring, though rarely used these days
Where you can find it: Candy, beverages, ice cream, puddings
What it is: A food coloring, but no longer used
Where you can find it: Sausage casings
Red No. 3
Also known as: Carmoisine
What it is: A food coloring found in only a few types of food products
Where you can find it: Candy, cake icing, chewing gum
Red No. 40
Also known as: Allura red
What it is: A food coloring and the most widely used food dye in the U.S., trumping both Yellow No. 5 and Yellow No. 6
Where you can find it: Some Frito-Lay products; some Yoplait products; JELL-O Gelatin desserts; Quaker Instant Oatmeal; Trix; Froot-Loops; Apple Jacks; some Pop-Tart products; Kid Cuisine Kung Fu Panda products; Oscar Mayer Lunchables products; Hostess Twinkies; some Pillsbury rolls and frostings; some Betty Crocker and Duncan Hines frostings; some Edys ice creams and candies; Popsicle Sugar-Free Life Savers; some M&Ms and Skittles candies; Nestles Butterfinger; Twizzlers Strawberry Candy; Sunkist Orange Soda; Dr. Pepper sodas; Propel Invigorating Water, Berry & Citrus; Gatorade Orange Thirst Quencher; Fanta Orange
What it is: A food preservative
Where you can find it: Fruit juice, carbonated beverages, and pickles. Youll find it in abundance in acidic foods. It is used to stymie the growth of microorganisms, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI).
Yellow No. 5
Also known as: Tartrazine
What it is: Yellow No. 5 is the only food dye that has been tested alone and not simply as part of a mix. Those studies did link it to hyperactivity. It is the second most commonly used dye in the U.S.
Where you can find it: Nabisco Cheese Nips Four Cheese; Frito-Lay Sun Chips Harvest Cheddar and other Frito-Lay products; some Hunts Snack Pack Pudding products; Lucky Charms; Eggo waffles and other waffle products; some Pop-Tarts products; various Kraft macaroni and cheese products; Betty Crocker Hamburger Helper and other products; some Oscar Mayer Lunchables products; Hot Pockets Ham & Cheese; some Hostess cup cakes; some Betty Crocker frostings; some M&Ms and Skittles products; some Gatorade products
Yellow No. 6
Also known as: Sunset yellow
What it is: The third most widely used food dye in the U.S.
Where you can find it: Frito-Lay Cheetos Flamin Hot Crunchy and other Frito-Lay products; Betty Crocker Fruit Roll-ups; some JELL-O gelatin desserts and instant puddings; Fruity Cheerios; Trix; some Eggo waffle products; some Kid Cuisine Kung Fu Panda products; some Kraft macaroni and cheese dinners; some Betty Crocker frostings; some M&Ms and Skittles candies; Sunkist Orange Soda; Fanta Orange