The Effect of Sugar, Synthetic Colorings and Flavors on the Brain
Although the effect on behavior of these chemicals can be quite dramatic, the effect on brain processing and intelligence can also be shown to be significant. Three years before the Canyon Verde study in 1979, the schools in New York City made a basic change in the school lunch program that excluded foods with a high sugar content, as well as eliminating foods with two synthetic coloring chemicals. Within one year, the scores on standardized California achievement tests went up 8%. The school system then banned all synthetic food colorings and flavoring. The scores went up another 4%. Three years later in 1983, all foods containing BHT and BHA were removed from school lunch programs. The scores increased an additional 4%. This means that school lunch programs are decreasing the mental capacity of children by at least 16%.
Food Additives and Hyperactivity in Children
A school study on rats and the experience of the students in New York City is not the only indicator that artificial colors and preservatives are causing behavioral hyperactivity in children. Lancet, the journal of the British Medical Association, despite its allopathic orientation, reported that these substances are capable of producing hyperactivity. The journal once focused on Yellow No.5, chemically know as tartrazine, and the preservative benzoic acid, commonly found in processed foods. These two chemicals produced dramatic reactions in 79% of children. Although a direct reference could not he located, it is claimed that the Surgeon General of the United States claimed that 8,000 people die of cancer each year from synthetic chemicals in food.
A book on this specific subject was written by Dr. Benjamin Feingold entitled ” Why Your Child is Hyperactive”. Feingold was an allergist as Kaiser Permanence in San Francisco who asserted that synthetic colors, flavorings and preservatives were a major co-faclor in both childhood learning disorders and behavior / conduct disorders. tie started national clearinghouses known as “Feingold Groups” and is known for the “Feingold Diet”, in use by families worldwide For information, contact the Feingold Association. P.O. Box 65511, Aletandia, Virginia 22306, or call 703-708-3287. A newsletter is also available.