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Karnataka Government Bans Artificial Colours in Non-Veg Food, Can It Cause Cancer?

The Karnataka government has banned the use of artificial colours in kebabs, chicken, fish and some vegetarian items. A recent lab testing has revealed that the food colour used in these food items contains high levels of sunset yellow and carmoisin, which is harmful for human health.

Artificial Colour Increases the Risk of Serious Diseases like Cancer

The government clearly said that any restaurant, street food stall or any place selling food items that violates this law may have to face severe punishment along with jail and heavy fine. The Karnataka government says that the food items used in some food items are very harmful for health. This can also cause serious diseases like cancer.

According to the news published in Indian Express, Karnataka’s ‘State Food and Safety Quality Department’ had tested 39 different kebab dishes. Out of these, it was found that artificial colors are being used in large quantities in 7 samples. Especially Sunset Yellow and Carmoisine, both these colors are very dangerous for health.

Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 and 2011

Under the 2006 and 2011 Food Safety and Standards Act, it was stated that the use of these food colours is not good for health. Also, the order issued by the government stated that those who violate these rules can be imprisoned for 7 years or even life imprisonment. With a minimum fine of 10 lakhs. The license of the shops that do this can also be cancelled. State Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao said that ‘Tartrazine’ can be used in small quantities in packaged food items, but its excessive use in restaurants or any hotel, dhaba can be harmful for health.

Artificial Colours are Added to Food Items

Artificial colors are added to cotton candy, sweet candy, cereals, potato chips, sauces, ice cream and many types of beverages. Currently, the most commonly used artificial colors in food are Red No. 5 (Erythrosine), Red No. 40 (Allura Red), Yellow No. 5 (Tartrazine), Yellow No. 6 (Sunset Yellow), Blue No. 1 (Brilliant Blue) and Blue No. 2 (Indigo Carmine).

Potential Cancer

There is evidence that adding food colour to food reduces the risk of cancer. But consuming more of Blue 2 colour increases the risk of brain tumour and cancer. Along with this, the risk of thyroid tumour also increases.

Eating some food colours like blue 1, red 40, yellow 6 can trigger allergies in the body. Yellow 5 food colour can cause aspirin allergy and asthma. Research has also revealed that people who have chronic hives and swelling have a 52 percent chance of getting allergies by eating food with added colours.

David Dass
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