It’s that time of year again, when people start seeing green everywhere they look. It might not be in the most desired form and stuffing it in your wallet won’t do you much good, but the decorations for the St. Patrick’s Day events are certainly welcoming. Perhaps even more enticing, for most, is the promise of an iced cold mug filled with the seasonal green beer.
There are always dangers when drinking. Most would consider drunk driving and a St. Petersburg auto accident the most serious risk, but it is not the only one that should be considered. While it is not likely to be a concern after a single day of drinking green beer, one should be aware of the potential dangers lurking in the use of food coloring and food dyes. This topic is becoming a more common point of conversation among personal injury attorneys.
The concern over food coloring was publicly raised by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). They cite the fact that while food dyes can make cereals and other edibles more enticing, they do nothing to enhance the nutrition and can actually increase the risk in cancer for those who consume them regularly.
There a number of food dyes used to achieve the bright rainbow of colors seen on grocery store shelves today. The most common of those include Red 40, Red 3, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, and Green 3. The last is commonly used in the making of green beer and all are said to contain cancer-causing substances.
In fact, Red 3 is a known carcinogen, but remains an acceptable ingredient, according to the FDA, because it is not thought to be harmful in small quantities. Meanwhile, other countries have already started food dye phase-outs.
Millions of pounds of food dyes are used each year to make our food products look a bit more appealing, so if you choose to celebrate like many Saint Petersburg residents with a bit of green in your beer this St. Patrick’s Day, it is not likely harm you, but there is one more reason for people to utter the words “drink responsibly.”