Coca-Cola Contains Cancer Causing Ingredient
The caramel dye used in Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and some other drinks is contaminated with two chemicals that cause cancer and should have been banned, said the Center for Science in the public interest, in the United States.
Coca-Cola Contains Cancer-Causing Ingredient
Unlike caramel, which can be made at home by melting sugar in a saucepan, the artificial brown dye in cola and some other products is produced during the reaction of sugars with ammonia and sulfites at high pressure and temperature. All this leads to the formation of 2-methyl imidazole and 4-methyl imidazole, which in government studies caused cancer of the lungs, liver, thyroid gland, and leukemia in laboratory mice and rats.
Animal studies have shown that there is clear evidence that both of these substances are carcinogens in animals, and it is believed that the substances that cause cancer in animals are dangerous to humans. Specialists from the University of California, USA, found a significant level of 4-methyl imidazole in five brands of cola.
“Carcinogenic dyes should not be in food, especially considering that their only function is cosmetic,” the Center said in the interest of society.
There are four types of caramel dyes, two of which are produced with ammonia, and two without it. The type used in Coca-Cola and other brands of sweet water is known as “sugar color IV” or E150d, obtained by sulfite-ammonia technology. Sugar Color III, or E150c, is produced using ammonia, but without sulfite, and is sometimes used in beer, soy sauce, and other products.
Five prominent carcinogen experts joined the call to ban the use of caramel dye produced using ammonia.
Experts also believe that the name “caramel dye” can be misleading to customers and should be clarified if the product contains “caramel produced using ammonia and sulfite,” which some manufacturers indicate as “natural.”
Products that contain more than the permissible rate of carcinogens must contain a warning label. For 4-methyl imidazole, the acceptable level is 16 mcg per person per day from a single product. Popular Coca-Cola brands contain about 200 micrograms of this substance per 0.5-liter bottle, and many people drink more than one bottle per day.