The Dangers Of Food Colouring

Do you know that the sweets and colourful snacks that your children love so much are all covered with artificial colouring? And if you’re particularly health conscious, you should take a look at the colours you should watch out for and how it might affect your children and you.

1. Hyperactivity

A study funded by the UK government revealed that a mixture of food colouring, along with the preservative sodium benzoate (211) could be linked to increased hyperactivity in some children. The colours that the study looked at were tartrazine (102), quinoline yellow (104), sunset yellow FCF (110), carmoisine (122), ponceau 4R (124) and allura red AC (129). Food manufacturers have therefore been encouraged by the Food Standards Agency to use any colour other than these colours in production.

I would advise that you go for sweets and foods with neutral colours.

2. Allergies

Artificial colouring can cause an allergic reaction in sensitive children. In the 1980s there was a lot of concern about an artificial colour called tartrazine (102), which was proven to cause a mild allergic-type reaction in some children and adults. Further studies have shown that sunset yellow FCF (110) can have a similar effect.


However, natural colouring annatto (160b) has also been found to cause allergic reactions in some people, meaning that it’s not just about the substance but about the individual prone to allergies. Annatto can also be found in margarine, certain types of cheese, smoked fish and some cakes.

3. Cancer

Some studies have claimed that artificial food colourings have carcinogenic qualities which is why parents should be cautious when buying products with artificial colouring.

Not all these claims are correct though since many of them have no real evidence to prove this theory. Although, two long-term studies of rats found that erythrosine (127) does increase the incidence of thyroid tumours in the animals.


Eating largely fresh, whole foods is the best way to stay away from artificially coloured foods and unsavoury additives. And buy sweets and snacks with neutral colours because food colouring doesn’t really do anything for our foods other than making it look beautiful.

Eat less of processed foods and more of organic foods besides the artificial colours they contain additives which are not good for your body but which helps in preserving them.

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How to Make Healthy Home-Made Peanut Butter

Peanut is a delicious and nutritious nut that everyone can snack on. It can be eaten alone or use as a compliment to other foods.

In Nigeria, many people do different food combinations with groundnut. Some of which are garri (cassava flakes) and groundnut, garden egg and groundnut, boli ( smoked plantain) and groundnut, peanut butter for the bread. It is even used for cooking soup too.

Today, you will be learning how to make home-made peanut butter that is natural with no sugar, salt or preservatives.


  • Raw or already roasted Groundnuts (of your desired quantity)
  • Garri
  • Salt

Method ( Roasting)

You should follow this procedure if you starting to make your peanut from the scratch

  • Pick stones from the raw groundnuts and soak in hot water until the water changes colour
  • Drain the water out, sprinkle a little salt and spread it on a tray out in the sun or oven. Dry until the wetness disappears. Roast in a pot or a pan
  • To make roast the groundnuts, preheat the pan by placing it on fire for a few minute before sprinkling the garri instead of sand in it.
  • Add your groundnut and stir on 5-minute interval so that it would roast evenly
  • Let it roast until you are satisfied till you get the level of brownness you want.
  • Remove it from pan and place in a colander or sieve for it to cool
  • After some minutes, you can taste it to enjoy your crunchy peanut


  • After the destoning, selection, soaking and salting of the peanuts which has been explained in details above.
  • You need to preheat your oven to about 350 degrees
  • Pour the already salted groundnut into your oven pan
  • Stir on a five minutes interval and let it roast for 15 to 20 minutes
  • Allow it cool for some minutes and store in an airtight container to help it remain crunchy.

Peanut Butter

After your roasted peanut is ready before it gets to room temperature, pour it into a clean cloth and dehusk by rubbing the clothes together. The crispier it is the easier it would be when grinding

  • Blow out the husk and place the groundnut into your food processor or mixer.
  • You can add other things like salt, sugar and pepper powder (this is optional).
  •  Do not fill the mixer jar to the brim with your peanuts.
  •  First, pulse it, then increase the speed of your food processor or mixer to make it into a smooth paste
  • When it cools, store in a plastic or glass airtight containers
  • Peanut butter can be stored for 2-4 weeks in a refrigerator and up to 6 months in a freezer.
  • Ensure that you stir the peanut butter thoroughly before every use.
  • Peanut is good for everyone (as long as you do not have allergies). It can be used as a weaning food for babies and a perfect accompaniment for finger foods, spread and cereals.

Note: If you are using a store-bought roasted peanut, you can toast and stir in a pan for about 5 minutes. Then pour it into the food processor for a good wipe into peanut butter.

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