It’s been several years in the making, and now a comprehensive report from California confirms that synthetic food dyes cause damage to children. 

The nonprofit, Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), has been working with the office of California State Senator Bill Wieckowski on legislation that would alert families to the potential damage from ingesting synthetic food dyes.         

The bill is cosponsored by the Children’s Advocacy Institute and the Environmental Working Group.  Feingold mom, Shula Edelkind provided extensive  data on the studies that support the dye/behavior link.

More than 260 studies were reviewed by California’s Office of  Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) and scientists from the state’s universities; their conclusion was that some children are at risk for neurobehavioral damage (including ADHD) as a result of ingesting the dyes.

The bill, known as SB 651, Reducing Exposure to Synthetic Food Dyes Act will require safety warnings on labels that contain the dyes and also on menus or menu boards in restaurants that serve food containing them.

The final report has just been released; it concludes:

Consumption of synthetic food dyes can result in hyperactivity and other neurobehavioral problems in some children.

Children vary in their sensitivity to synthetic dyes.

At a minimum, in the short term, the effects of the dyes should be acknowledged, and steps taken to reduce exposure to them.

If food companies are required to include warning labels on their products, it is likely that they will switch to natural colorings; they don’t like to have to warn consumers about their foods!

And if this is required in one state it is likely that the foods distributed throughout the country will also be free of the fake dyes. The committee notes that this detailed scientific risk assessment by the state of California is “the most comprehensive analysis ever published about the known behavioral effects on children of consuming synthetic food dyes.” You can read their report. 

 “Health Effects Assessment Potential Neurobehavioral Effect of Synthetic Food Dyes in Children” at:

 Since 1976 the nonprofit Feingold Association has taught families how to identify and remove the likely triggers for ADHD and other problems in children and adults.