E Numbers to Avoid
Not all E numbers are bad for you or harmful – many are from completely natural sources and are innocuous. But some E numbers are known to have side effects and have a negative effect when eaten or drunk. Here we look at which E numbers are best avoided by certain groups of people.
Asthmatics and People Suffering from Breathing ProblemsIf you already suffer from asthma or any other form of breathing problem there are some E numbers that could aggravate the condition. So it may be best to avoid consuming:
- E102 – tartrazine. This yellow dye is found in fizzy drinks squashes, cake mixes, custard powder, sauces, ice cream, marzipan, jam, marmalade, mustard, yoghurt and many other products. It can cause allergic reactions in people who suffer from asthma.
- E104 – quinoline yellow. This synthetic yellow dye is found in ice creams, ice lollies, smoked haddock and scotch eggs. Although it’s used in the UK, it’s banned in many other countries, including America, Australia and Japan.
- E107 – yellow G. In people who already have asthma, it’s been linked to causing allergic reactions.
- E142 – green S. It’s found in desserts, ice cream, mint sauce, sweets, tinned peas and gravy granules and is already banned in many countries.
- E213 – calcium benzoate. This preservative can make symptoms worse for people with asthma.
- E221 – Sodium sulphite. Sometimes found in orange juice, this preservative may trigger asthma.
Allergies and IntolerancesE142 – green S. It’s been linked to cases of the allergic reaction, urticaria. It’s found in desserts, ice cream, mint sauce, sweets, tinned peas and gravy granules and is already banned in many countries.
E132 – indigo carmine. This colouring has been linked to increased skin sensitivity. It’s used in products such as sweets, biscuits, ice cream and baked products.
E213 – calcium benzoate. This preservative is linked to allergic reactions, particularly in people who already suffer from asthma.
E220 – sulphur dioxide. This preservative is found in cordials, wine, soft drinks, dried fruit and vinegar and has been associated with provoking asthma attacks.
Gastric ProblemsSome E numbers may cause gastric irritation or upset. E numbers to avoid if you’re sensitive in this department include:
- E226 – calcium sulphite. This is a preservative that has been linked to gastric irritation. It’s banned in Australia.
- E110 – sunset yellow. It’s found in products such as ice creams, drinks and sweets and has been linked to gastric upset.
E Numbers Advisable for Children to AvoidSome of the E numbers that the UK government have suggested children should avoid, particularly if they’ve shown any signs of suffering from hyperactivity, are as follows.
- E102 – tartrazine. As well as hyperactivity, it’s been linked to asthma and rashes. It’s commonly found in products such as biscuits, sweets and even mushy peas.
- E110 – sunset yellow. In addition to hyperactivity and behaviour issues, it’s also been linked to allergies and gastric upset. It’s found in products such as ice creams, drinks and sweets.
- E122 – carmoisine. This has also been linked to an increase in allergies and intolerances. It’s commonly found in ready meals, biscuits, sweets and jelly.
- E124 – ponceau 4R. It’s also been linked to instances of allergies and intolerances. It’s found in drinks, biscuits and sweets.
- E129 – allura red. This is commonly found in products such as sausages and soft drinks.
- E104 – quinoline yellow. It’s also been linked to incidences of rashes and asthma. It’s found in products such as smocked haddock, pickle and sweets.
- E211 – sodium benzoate. It’s also been linked to asthma. It’s found in ice lollies, baked foods and soft drinks.