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How to Teach Your Child About Artificial Food Dyes and Become a Food Advocate at Home

Someone asked me a very good question the other day…

“What do you do when your daughter’s at a party with cakes and candies full of artificial food dyes? Do you let her eat it? Does she miss out? What do you do?”

My daughter was at a friend’s birthday party recently and the mom whispered over to warn me about the blue & red Spiderman Cake they had baked.

Since she knows me very well she said: “You may not want Harley eating this cake because the kids went really crazy with artificial colors while making it”.

I appreciated her giving me the heads up, so I could be prepared when cake time rolled around! 

I’m sure you’ve also found yourself in this situation…you don’t want your kids to feel left out…but there is no way you are going to allow them to eat artificial dyes made from petroleum that disrupt the immune system and are linked to hyperactivity, cancer, and allergies. (1)

So, what do you do?

I answer this question during my interview on the Broken Brain podcast with my friend Dhru Purohit. Watch the video below.

Now that my daughter is almost 4, she’s encountering artificially dyed, flavored, over-processed foods more than ever, and I know I can’t always be there. I hope to give her all the tools she needs to know what to do when this happens.

Watch the video below to hear how I handled the “blue cake situation” at this party and how I’m raising my daughter to make these decisions on her own as she gets older (jump to 25:50 in the video to hear the story).

Dhru and I also talk about the nasty ingredients in Kellogg’s cereal, why Starbucks removed caramel color from their drinks, and the simple tips and recipes I provide in my new cookbook, Food Babe Kitchen. Watch or listen below and share it with your friends! 

You can also listen to the podcast here:

Highlights of our conversation: 

  • 4:22 – My personal health journey that led to becoming an activist
  • 11:08 – Why there are harmful additives in our food 
  • 12:30 – The nasty ingredient in Kellogg’s cereals that we are petitioning them to remove
  • 18:09 – Why it’s up to you to know what’s in your food (The government isn’t protecting you)
  • 20:05 – What happened when I exposed the secret ingredients in Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte
  • 25:50 – How I handled it when my young daughter went to birthday party where the cake was made with artificial colors.
  • 33:49 – My 3 Question Detox technique from my new cookbook, Food Babe Kitchen
  • 36:10 – What happened when I met with Chick-Fil-A in their headquarters
  • 44:14 – What you’ll find in the grocery shopping guide you’ll find inside Food Babe Kitchen and misleading labels to look out for.
  • 48:07 – The recipes from Food Babe Kitchen that I love to make during the holidays and for family gatherings.

Where to find a Food Babe Kitchen:

Now that Food Babe Kitchen is a New York Times Best Seller and is getting increased exposure, available copies are even more limited. To get it in time for Thanksgiving or for gifts, now is the time to order:

  • Amazon is available to order online. They are restocking their warehouse every minute, so delivery dates are changing constantly. (Several people got theirs earlier than expected – yay!)
  • Barnes & Noble is available to order online and has copies in some physical stores.
  • Books-A-Million is available to order online and has copies in a few physical stores. 
  • Park Road Books has a handful of signed copies in stock ready to ship now or pick up.

Thank you for your incredible support – together we are going to change the health of this world and our families. 



P.S. You’ve got to check out my brand new investigation into birthday cakes and cake mixes – which includes all my best tips, recipes, and products I use to avoid artificial colors at our celebrations. There are so many great options out there now! 


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2 responses to “How to Teach Your Child About Artificial Food Dyes and Become a Food Advocate at Home

  1. Would love to know thoughts on what to do if there aren’t any better options at a birthday party?

    1. I rarely have to do anything. Since my daughter doesn’t consume those ingredients regularly, when she does consume them its usually one and at max two bites because she can taste that it is full of junk and she doesn’t like it. The more they dont eat it, the easier those situations will become.

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