Red 40, a food coloring found in snack foods like Pepsi and Doritos can trigger inflammatory bowel disease

A food coloring found in dozens of family-favorite snacks can trigger serious intestinal illnesses, scientists warn.

Red 40, also known as Allura red, is found in several popular candy bars, soft drinks, and potato chips, including Doritos, Skittles, and Pepsi, as well as baked goods and cake mixes.

But researchers at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada, found that the additive can hamper the intestine’s ability to absorb nutrients, water and electrolytes, increasing a person’s risk of developing inflammatory bowel disease.

They say this wearing down of the body’s defenses could make people more susceptible to ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

While the study was conducted in mice, the researchers say the findings translate to humans in Western countries, whose diets often contain a large amount of food dyes.

Red 40, also known as Allura red, is found in several popular candies, sodas, and potato chips, including Doritos, Skittles, and Pepsi, as well as baked goods and cake mixes.

Red 40, also known as Allura red, is found in several popular candies, sodas, and potato chips, including Doritos, Skittles, and Pepsi, as well as baked goods and cake mixes.

Lead investigator Dr Waliul Khan said: “These findings have important implications for the prevention and management of intestinal inflammation.”

He added: “What we have found is surprising and alarming, as this common synthetic food coloring is a potential dietary trigger for IBD.”

The findings were published in the journal Nature Communications.

Inflammatory bowel diseases, such as colitis and Crohn’s disease, a chronic condition that causes inflammation in the digestive tract, are estimated to affect an estimated three million Americans.

The use of food colorings has increased over the past 100+ years, but there has been little research on their effect on the gut.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) limits the amount of food coloring in food and cosmetics and sets the recommended daily limit at 7 mg/kg of body weight.

Still, the chemicals in the dyes have been linked to a myriad of conditions.

As part of their study, the McMaster scientists fed mouse models Allura Red dye with their meals for 12 weeks.

They found that the additive increased serotonin production in the colon and disrupted gut bacteria, leading to cases of colitis, a chronic condition that causes ulcers and sores in the digestive tract.

Serotonin, sometimes called the “happiness hormone,” is often talked about because of its effects on the brain. Low hormone levels are often a factor in people with depression.

But it is actually the gut that is responsible for producing 95 percent of the total serotonin in the body.

In the intestine, serotonin regulates the normal rhythmic movement of the intestinal muscle and helps move the contents of the intestines along the way. It is also responsible for the absorption of nutrients, electrolytes and water.

The researchers looked for several common synthetic dyes in a human enterochromaffin (EC) cell model.

It affects the colon and rectum and can cause various problems related to inflammation, such as abdominal pain and bloating, diarrhea, dehydration, and blood in the stool.

Dr Khan said: “The literature suggests that Allura Red consumption also affects certain allergies, immune disorders and behavioral problems in children, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.”

Studies have suggested an association between the consumption of food dyes and hyperactivity in children.

An April 2021 analysis of studies commissioned by the state of California reported that of a total of 25 studies on the topic, 16 identified some association between food coloring and neurobehavioral problems, “particularly exacerbation of attention, as in children with attention deficit. hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and other behavioral outcomes’.

Red 40, as well as Yellow 5 and Yellow 6 contain benzidenea human and animal carcinogen permitted at low, presumably safe levels, in dyes.

The FDA calculated in 1985 that ingestion of free benzidine increases the risk of cancer to just below the threshold for “concern,” or 1 cancer in 1 million people.

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