What are disadvantages of food additives?


Quick Answer

The disadvantages of food additives are that they can cause allergic reactions and other serious health issues. Food additives are usually listed on the ingredient label of a product, but their function is rarely disclosed.

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Full Answer

A Turkish study in 2012 stated that allergic reactions to food additives have been proliferating over the last 20 years. The symptoms of these allergies are skin irritations, intestinal discomfort and breathing problems. However, most of these symptoms are minor and go unreported. The most common additives that trigger allergic reactions are mono-sodium glutamate sulfites, food colorings and artificial sweeteners.

A study published in the 1994 edition of the Annals of Allergy medical journal indicated a substantial link between ADHD and the consumption of artificial colors and preservatives. Some chemicals that are connected to hyperactivity are sodium benzoate, red food dye and various yellow food dyes.

Aspartame, saccharin, nitrites and benzoate are food additives that have been linked to cancer in animal studies because they create carcinogenic compounds during the metabolizing process, as stated by the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Contrarily, the Food and Drug Administration states that because no human research has been done, there is no justification for removing these potentially harmful chemicals from food.

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