Wednesday, June 25, 2008


If your pediatrician or doc didn't tell you about THIS before he prescribed THIS, then he or she is not doing a proper job for your child.

ABC News recently ran THIS report on artificial colors and behaviors in children.

So many therapists use Skittles candy (and other artificially colored candies) as behavioral incentives for kids on the spectrum. Check out this article From Most autism schools probably have weekly shipments of this high fructose laden, artificially colored and flavored treat delivered to their doors for use as rewards and incentives.

Boy is that ever stupid. Studies show (See NYT article here) that artificial colors can affect behavior. By affect, we don't mean "turns the child into a charming, compliant pussycat." Please get rid of the artificial colors in your practices, classrooms and centers, or really, you're like an AA counselor sharing a drink with an alcoholic during each session.

The amount of food dye certified for use in 1955 was 12 mg per person per day, but that has risen sharply, according to FDA. In 2007, the figure had reached 59 mg per capita per day, or nearly five times as much, was certified for use. (Read more here.) Look at kids' goods on the shelves. Yogurt is neon pink. Goldfish are now in "rainbow" colors. Cereals are laden with artificial colors. Even ketchup and french fries come in colors. Check your Crest toothpaste - see the chemical colors? Why can't Mom just feed kids F-O-O-D instead of a technicolor nightmare? Even at my daughters' school, they serve ice cream that is pink and blue. The Stagliano girls bring a packed lunch each day, in the drab colors mother nature made. My language may be colorful (think six of George Carlin's seven words) but my food is NOT.

And how about pediatricians? Do you see signs in their offices warning you about artifical colors and promoting alternatives next to the posters for the latest allergy drug? Come on, docs, get the red dye out of that amoxicillin and every other kid-friendly drug you prescribe. You might even see your Ritalin prescriptions drop. Oh. Nevermind.

Readers might want to know that M&M Mars and other candy manufacturers have removed the artificial dyes from their candies, Skittles included, sold in Europe. But not in America (click here.)

Check out these simple Google searches to see what we mean about how commonly used are these candies for children with developmental delays and behavior issues:

ABA and Skittles

autism and Skittles

*PS: Some of my very closest friends' kids are on powerful drugs. I'm not against drugs. I'm against drugs as a first and only line of defense.


Amanda said...

Swing by for more about additives and food legislation - under post titled "Like I always say, rubbish in, rubbish out" Need I say more? It ain't rocket science after all!

Josh Day said...

If you haven't had your dose of bullshit "ScIeNcE" today, get ready!

Coming to you from the same people who "proved" sugar doesn't make you hyperactive, echinacea doesn't do a damned thing, and that there's no link whatsoever between vaccines and neurological damage!

"This was a triumph
I'm making a note here...
huge success!
It's hard to overstate my satisfaction
Aperture Science:
We do what we must because we can."

Josh Day said...

Oops, incomplete link.

Demon Hunter said...

Whoa, Kim. I never knew that. I knew that artificial colors and flavors were bad, but I never knew the extent of it.

Amanda said...

Just a thought - you know if you cut your finger in a food prep area you have to use a blue plaster DUE TO THERE NOT BEING A BLUE FOOD, what colour plaster will you have to wear now food apparently can be ANY FREAKING COLOUR?? Blue pasta? Hmm,that was a bit chewy...

Kim Stagliano said...

My Demonic friend - that's because no one in a white coat has told you. Nor has anyone had the millions to advertise it. Unlike the food companies and the drug companies. So it's not your fault. All those little kids running around on Ritalin and other drugs - could perhaps avoid it altogether or lower their dose, at least, by a dietary intervention that up until VERY recently, the American Academy of Peds called, "Junk Science." Yes. Junk Food Science.

What happens to the boy who is on Ritalin at seven when he turns 17, 27, 37?? I worry about the longterm escalation of drug use.

JUST SAY NO! What bullshit.

Petra said...

Ah Kim, a subject near and dear to my heart. As you know, before Salamander's diet became GFCFSFEFYF and about 15 additional foods free, the first step I took was to get him artificials free. And OMG what a difference. Here you had a chid that did not sleep. I repeat, he.did.not.sleep. And within a week of removing all the artificial crap from his diet (and there was a LOT of artificial crap in his diet) he would sleep like the dead for 3 - 4 hour stretches at a time (still not great, but a WORLD better than not sleeping at all). And the sleeping got better after every dietary 'clean up' (now he easily sleeps for 10 - 11 hours at a stretch, as he SHOULD be doing).

My ex-pediatrician's comments when I mentioned Feingold and modified Feingold to her shortly after Salmander's Asperger's + anxiety+ NLD + ADHD diagnoses? 'You're wasting your time. And you say he's hardly eating as is, and you want to take away what little he is eating? Why don't we start him on some [forgot the name of the drug] instead?'.
I said; "Thanks, but no thanks. I'll think I'll try the food changes first."

Food (or more precisely the junk that's in our food) can have a huge effect on demeanor (Dr. Doris Rapp has several awesome books on this subject). You should see what happens to Potatey when he accidentially gets corn syrup - he becomes a little psychopath (and this is my very sweet, super empathic, always helpful NT kiddo).

Kathryn said...

I can't tell you how many people look at me like I have two heads when I tell them we don't do artificial colors, and that includes teachers, therapists, doctors, and parents. Like I'm one of those Berkinstock-wearing, tofu-eating, hippie chicks...geez.

Then the local pediatrician even gives out colored Mucinex with ASPARTAME. And he says he doesn't believe in that "DAN" stuff...

Amanda said...

I am not thick, but I am struggling to understand why people find it so hard to grab the concept that if they feed themselves and their children rubbish they will suffer the side effects. They don't put diesel in their sports cars - or do they and that's why they don't get it?

This is a soap box topic for me and I am in serious danger of launching into a rant

Michelle O'Neil said...

Go get 'em Kim!

This is one of the topics I'll be easing into the conversation at school next year. (First step complete...they fell in love with Riley).

Anonymous said...

Hey, not trying to change the subject or anything...but this long *dry spell* of silence and all of us being patient while you move better include some pics of Pool Boy once you arrive and get caught up!

Petra said...

Good grief Kelli Ann,

Can you read my thoughts all the way from DC?


Jeanne said...

Kelli Ann and Petra,

I jumped on Kim's site today to send her the following message:

Dear Kim,
Back away from the Pool Boy.

Good to know I'm not the only one jonesing for some STAG time.

Anonymous said...

Ah ha! I knew it Petra.

Trying to pretend like you're all *hands off* and outa the picture when it comes to Pool Boy yet now you *admit* that you want to see pics too!

I shoulda known.

Oh, and Jeanne. I appreciate the backup but don't *even think* of trying to hone in on my territory.

But hey, go check out Michelle's turf -- seems she's connected with a really great Sewer Guy. Maybe he's available.

Jeanne said...

Kelli Ann,

Ah, I think you misunderstood my intentions. I didn't mean back away from the pool boy so I could get my claws in him. I simply meant back away from the pool boy and give a shout out to your peeps.

I promise I do not have any plans for Pool Boy. Besides, even if I did snatch him, I'd be too damned tired to do anything with him.


Jeanne said...

Oh, and the sewer guy? What a sh$tty suggestion...

Anonymous said...


Michelle didn't seem to think so. According to her, he's a real stand up kinda guy.

'member, don't judge a book by its cover -- or in this case, by the fact that he's interested in digging up sh** for a living.

(See what happens Kim when you leave us? Pleasssseeee come back)

Petra said...

Kelli Ann, you made me spit my coffee at my computer screen. Between your 'member', and 'stand up guy' references and Michelle's 'hole' story from yesterday, this girl is, to paraphrase you, 'all revved up with nowhere to go'.

Of course I want to see pictures. Hello??? Am I still breathing? I guess you and I are going to have to 'duke' the whole 'who gets a shot at Pool Boy vs. his friends' out in person eh? So once Kim is settled, let's have us a pool party and may be best woman win (but I will give you a first crack at Pool Boy.. that's what I agreed to after all, and this girl does keep her promises)

Jeanne, it's absolutely amazing how adrenaline, pheromones and just plain old deprevation can overcome pretty much any level of tiredness (trust me on that one).

And Kim, see what happens? You go away and the 'level' on your blog goes down with several notches. We miss you girl. Come back as soon as you can.

Anonymous said...

Down several notches??

I'll have you remember it was the STAG woman who introduced P.B in the first place!

Gave him a big, prominent place smack dab in the middle of her blogoshpere.

Unpacking? Ha.

Think frolic. Think suntan lotion. Think skimmer.

mom4 said...

Does anyone have suggestions on where to obtain information on a GFCFSFEFYF diet (gluten, casein,soy, egg, and yeast free)? Is there a cookbook specific to this?