This week’s Real Food Experience challenge is all about cutting out those nasty artificial food dyes. Here in the US, our food companies still allow food dyes that have warning labels in some countries and that are banned in others. I always thought that the government would not allow something in my food that is harmful for my family. Now, I know it’s up to us as consumers to do some research and make informed decisions for our families. My research told me quite clearly that it was time to get rid of the very brightly colored cupcakes, yogurt, and gummy snacks.
Sounds like it would be easy to dump the artificial food dyes……until you find out that they are in just about everything. My favorite story is one my mother shared with me. She took this challenge a couple of years ago and started reading labels. She was making chili for dinner and noticed that her kidney beans had artificial dyes in them. She was shocked! Why would a bean need color?
Over and over it is said that artificial food dyes are unnecessary, but potentially harmful. They do not add any nutritional value to the food we eat. They are used in greater and great numbers all of the time. The food recipes that we grew up with are not the same recipes our children are growing up with. We all know about Kool-aid faces. Most children grow up with them, but did you know that you can also find potentially harmful food dyes in salad dressings, packaged cookies, pasta sauces, and almost every other packaged food on the market today? It’s crazy!
I encourage you to take a stand. Start enjoying “ugly” food. Embrace the fact that food may not all come in exactly the same color. I kind of like the variety of color I see in the apples I buy. It may take some time to adjust, but I know you can do it.
I know your kids are really attracted to color so this week I am sharing a fun and easy blender recipe for Tropical Strawberry Natural Fruit Punch. I can assure you that children adapt, at least to some degree pretty quickly. My kids now refer to anything that is bright red as “Cancer food” and refuse it. They will usually still choose something blue instead. They are still learning. Nicky at Little Family Adventure is sharing an entire meal plan which does not include artificial food dyes. Make sure you check out her roasted chicken recipe. It’s delicious! KC The Kitchen Chopper is sharing some additional recipes and some fantastic information on home fitness equipment. We may be stuck home due to the snow, but we can still be working out.
Are you surprised at the amount of food dyes in your food? Do you know that they are potentially harmful? Have you seen a difference in your family since dumping the artificial dyes? Do your children really crave colored foods?
I promise to keep bringing you the best and most accurate information on nutrition I can find……….and hopefully with a little bit of humor along the way as well. You can find lots of great information on this blog (check out the tabs above and the archives). You can follow what others are doing for the Real Food Experience using #RealFoodExperience. Make sure to subscribe by email so you don’t miss anything. You can also find lots of great tips, tricks, advice, and fun on my Facebook page and my other social media. Please join us and share us with your friends!
You can also check out Week 1’s recipe resources which focus on fruit and vegetables here.