There's a reason the UK has banned a multitude of additives from their food. A Food Standards Agency study found that removing additives can reduce a child's impulsiveness and hyperactivity. The study showed that artificial food colorings and preservatives had "substantial effects" on children's behavior.
In the United States, some artificial colors have been removed from foods by the Food and Drug Administration, but it might not be enough. If your child is acting out, or even if she isn't, there are three additives that could be causing bad behavior, according to Dr. Alan Greene.
There's a reason food companies make their products bright and beautiful. We are naturally drawn to colorful foods, like apples, blueberries, tomatoes, pears, etc. However, foods that are colorful by nature are far different from foods made in a factory and colored with chemicals; there's a whole list of colors you should weed out of your family's diet. Artificial colors have been shown to affect a child's behavior and concentration.
Sure, we want our food to last, but not at the expense of our health. Preservatives like Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA), Sodium Nitrate, and Sodium Benzoate have each been linked to cancer, but Sodium Benzoate has been linked to behavioral problems too. In fact, an Australian study found that children who consume a "western diet" (including processed foods with preservatives) are at a much higher risk of developing ADHD.
This includes high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, and dextrose. Kids get 16% of their total calories from sugar. This is above the recommended 5-15%. Not only is sugar linked to obesity and diabetes, but the ups and downs of high and low blood sugar levels can cause ADHD type symptoms in children.
There are plenty of food additives that should be avoided, but these three have been linked to outbursts, tantrums, and hyperactivity in children. Be sure to read the ingredients on every food product you buy and try to stick to all natural or organic items. You may see some real positive changes in your child's behavior and overall health.