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Environmental group claims that Pepsi products still contain high levels of carcinogens
New claims from an environmental group say that Pepsi products contain high levels of a known carcinogen.
Well, this certainly doesn't make us crave a Pepsi: new claims from an environmental group say that Pepsi products contain high levels of a known carcinogen.
The Associated Press reports that the problem stems from a recent Californian law passed, which stated that drink products containing known carcinogens must come with a cancer warning label. The known carcinogen in qestion in Pepsi's products? 4-methylimidazole, or 4-Mel, found in its caramel coloring. The test, from the Center for Environmental Health, found that while Pepsis bought in California no longer contain 4-Mel, Pepsi products bought across the country contain levels of 4-Mel four to eight times higher than Californian safety standards. Uh, yikes.
PepsiCo has said that it will change its formula in all its drinks across the country by 2014, and that the company is changing its manufacturing process. Meanwhlie, its competitor, Coca-Cola, has already changed its formula for drinks across the country; the test results found no trace levels of 4-Mel in any of its products.
Both PepsiCo and the American Beverage Association (the ABA) responded to the newest claims. PepsiCo said that the levels of 4-Mel found in its products have been deemed safe by the FDA. The ABA said that there's been no direct link found between 4-Mel and cancer, and that in order to get cancer, a person would have to drink 1,000 sodas a day to reach the noted amount found in studies linking carcinogens to cancer in rats. Either way, we'll stick to water.
These 11 Popular Sodas Tested Positive for a Potential Carcinogen
<a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-109505327/stock-photo-refreshing-brown-soda-with-ice-on-a-background.html?src=AZ6jB-GnWkDPEVNyN5Y9Kg-2-54" target="_blank">Brent Hofacker</a>/Shutterstock
The chemical compound that gives some sodas a caramel-brown color could be a carcinogen&mdashand according to a new study by Consumer Reports, it’s in many popular soft drinks at levels that exceed what many experts consider safe. Between April and December of 2013, researchers tested 110 bottles of various brands of soda for the 4-methylimidazole, or 4-MeI for short. They found the highest levels of the substance in Goya Malta, a malt-flavored soda popular in Latin American communities, and in various Pepsi products:
4-MeI is not federally regulated, but the International Agency for Research on Cancer lists it as a potential carcinogen (PDF). In California, products that expose consumers to more than 29 micrograms of 4-MeI are supposed to have a warning label, according to the state’s Proposition 65&mdashyet none of the sodas that the group tested carried such a label. Dr. Urvashi Rangan, a toxicologist and executive director of the Consumer Reports Food Safety and Sustainability Center, believes that one reason for the New York samples’ relatively high levels of 4-MeI might be that New York doesn’t have a similar warning-label rule.
The researchers found that the Coca-Cola products had relatively low levels of 4-MeI. On the other hand, some of the samples of Dr. Snap, a soda sold at Whole Foods with a “natural” label, had levels that exceeded the California warning-label threshold.
PepsiCo representatives told Consumer Reports that they don’t attach the warning label to their products in California because their research shows that consumers drink only about a third of a can of their products a day, on average&mdashan amount that contains less than 29 micrograms of 4-MeI. The other brands whose products Consumer Reports tested have not yet responded to the findings.
Rangan notes that 4-MeI is present in some foods as well: barbecue sauces, soups, imitation pancake syrup, gravy, and canned mushrooms, among others. While Consumer Reports is urging the FDA to regulate 4-MeI, in the meantime, consumers should consider avoiding foods and beverages with caramel color, Rangan says. “We just don’t think coloring your food brown should give you cancer.”
Study Found that Pepsi Contains Potentially High Levels of a Reported Carcinogen
California's Proposition 65 requires a special label if products contain more than 29 micrograms of 4-Mel per a day's worth of consumption. Certain cans of Pepsi used in the Consumer Reports study reportedly had just over the limit. Pepsi purchased in New York in 2013 between the months of April and September was found to contain 174.4 micrograms of 4-meth. Diet Pepsi had similar results, with some cans testing just over 29 micrograms, while one batch from New York in the same time frame tested way over. Pepsi One tested over the limit on all occasions.
Grub Street reports that the Food and Drug Administration will look into the safety of caramel coloring again after the alarming results of the Consumer Reports study. However, PepsiCo was quick to condemn the report altogether. "We believe their conclusion is factually incorrect and reflects a serious misunderstanding of Prop. 65's requirements," PepsiCo wrote in a statement. Additionally the company says it's planning to reduce the amount of 4-Mel in beverages next month.
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Lawsuit says PepsiCo failed to disclose cancer-causing ingredient
An Orange County woman has filed suit against PepsiCo Inc., alleging that the food and beverage company failed to warn consumers that its diet soda, Pepsi One, contains a cancer-causing component.
Kelly Ree contends in the lawsuit that Pepsi One contains a dangerous level of 4-methylimidazole, or 4-MEI, which has been shown to cause cancer in laboratory mice. She said the company was required to warn consumers of the danger under California’s Proposition 65 but failed to do so.
“Plaintiff would not have purchased the product had she known that it contained 4-MEI well in excess of Proposition 65 guidelines,” the lawsuit contends.
Ree said she purchased the soda in 2012. The lawsuit seeks certification as a class-action, a step that would include potentially thousands of consumers as plaintiffs.
PepsiCo did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The chemical is formed during the production of certain caramel-coloring agents used in many foods and beverages. It is found in colas, beers, soy sauces, breads, coffee and other products, according to California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.
Studies published in 2007 by the federal government’s National Toxicology Program showed that long-term exposure to 4-MEI led to increases in lung cancer in mice. As a result, 4-MEI was added to the list of carcinogens that must be disclosed under California law.
Coca-Cola Co. and PepsiCo said they were altering how they made cola beverages to reduce the amount of 4-MEI and avoid the disclosure requirement.
But last month, Consumer Reports reported that its testing found that Pepsi One contained in excess of 29 micrograms of 4-MEI per serving.
In her lawsuit, Ree seeks unspecified monetary damages, plus an injunction requiring PepsiCo to either reduce the amount of the chemical in Pepsi One or include a warning on product labels.
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Dr Eddy Bettermann MD focus on Biological Medicine (Biologische Medizin), Darkfield Microscopy (Dunkelfeld Mikroskopie), Orthomolecular Medicine (Orthomolekulare Medizin), Ayurvedic Medicine (Ayurveda), Psychosomatic Medicine (Psychosomatische Medizin), raw food (Rohkost), fasting (Fasten): Our primary integrative medicine goal is the maintenance of your health and wellness, and we are committed to safe and effective healthcare. Our specialties include online integrative medicine education by alternative doctor: food and allergy management through the use of Integrative medical therapy, Environmental Medicine, General Family Medicine, Ayurveda, Panchakarma, Chronic Fatigue, ADHD, autism, Fibromyalgia, Yeast/Fungus related diseases – Candidacies, mercury dental replacement and detoxification, Natural Thyroid Replacement, Weight loss, Lyme Disease, Irritable Bowel Disease, Attention Deficit Disorder, Pervasive Developmental Disorders, Multiple Chemical Sensitivities, Addiction related programs, Intestinal Dysbiosis, as well as trigger point therapy using Neural Therapy. Dr. Eddy Bettermann MD, physician from Germany, consultant and teacher in biological medicine, especially dark field microscopy known as Live Blood Analysis in Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Singapore and the Philippines. But he lecture also in the USA, Canada and the U.A.E. He speaks english and german. https://dreddymd.com/2017/01/17/the-interactive-live-blood-cd-and-the-certified-training-live-blood-analysis-online-course/ https://dreddymd.com/courses/ https://dreddymd.com/2017/01/17/live-blood-microscopy-analysis-darkfield-course/ “Let thy Food be thy Medicine and thy Medicine be thy Food.” — Hippocrates Physician Member of the Medical Board at AOX Singapore, Medical Doctor at Nurse Mobile Clinic and Physician at DrEddy Clinic Our Mission: The mission of the Integrative Medicine is to search for the most effective treatments for patients by combining both conventional and alternative approaches that address all aspects of health and wellness – biological, psychological, social and spiritual. Biological Medicine is a big part of my work and so is Dark field Microscopy, what I use in my daily practice and what I teach more then 15 years in Asia and around the world: Live Blood Analysis in dark field based on Haematology. We utilize Live blood analysis since 2004, conventional as well as specialty laboratories for a thorough diagnostic work up of the disease in question. Our integrative medicine treatment regimens are especially unique and are tailored specifically to the individual needs of each patient. Our Mission: don’t harm, prevent, use food as medicine We are a reliable partner for integrative medicine in Medical Spa & Clinic Development and integrative medicine Education Training for alternative doctors – we bring different holistic approaches, like Integrative Medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda Medicine together. On your request we offer our service in your place as well. Heavy metal poisoning Heavy metal poisoning is much more common than most people realize, and if you’re thinking that it doesn’t apply to you because you haven’t been exposed to any, think again. If you’ve eaten fish regularly, had amalgam fillings, received vaccinations, drank contaminated water, or done industrial or agricultural work or pharmaceutical manufacturing, there’s a good chance that you have a fair amount of toxic metals in your system.. We are here to help and to educate! Wishing your health and happiness Dr Eddy Bettermann MD Multimedia library https://bit.ly/2Wgqsd3 Protect you and your family from harmful radiation https://bit.ly/synergyscience-dreddymd More information about 5G and EMF: https://dreddymd.com/?s=5G+and+EMF Protocol https://amzn.to/2Nxsfql View all posts by dreddymd
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Coke, Pepsi Change Recipe to Remove Carcinogen
by SPITTING BANANA » Sat Mar 10, 2012 5:56 am
Coke, Pepsi Make Changes to Avoid Cancer Warning
Coca-Cola Co. and PepsiCo Inc. are changing the way they make the caramel coloring used in their sodas as a result of a California law that mandates drinks containing a certain level of carcinogens come with a cancer warning label.
The companies said the changes will be expanded nationally to streamline their manufacturing processes. They've already been made for drinks sold in California.
Coca-Cola and PepsiCo account for almost 90 percent of the soda market, according to industry tracker Beverage Digest. A representative for Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc. said all its caramel coloring now meet the new California standard.
The American Beverage Association, which represents the broader industry, said its member companies will continue to use caramel coloring in certain products but that adjustments were made to meet California's new standard.
"Consumers will notice no difference in our products and have no reason at all for any health concerns," the association said in a statement.
A representative for Coca-Cola, Diana Garza-Ciarlante, said the company directed its caramel suppliers to modify their manufacturing processes to reduce the levels of the chemical 4-methylimidazole, which can be formed during the cooking process and, as a result, may be found in trace amounts in many foods.
"While we believe that there is no public health risk that justifies any such change, we did ask our caramel suppliers to take this step so that our products would not be subject to the requirement of a scientifically unfounded warning," Garza-Ciarlante said in an email.
The Center for Science in the Public Interest, a consumer advocacy group, in February filed a petition with the Food and Drug Administration to ban the use of ammonia-sulfite caramel coloring.
A spokesman for the Food and Drug Administration said the petition is being reviewed. But he noted that a consumer would have to drink more than 1,000 cans of soda a day to reach the doses administered that have shown links to cancer in rodents.
The American Beverage Association also noted that California added the coloring to its list of carcinogens with no studies showing that it causes cancer in humans. It noted that the listing was based on a single study in lab mice and rats.
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Pepsi Co Now Admits Their Products Contain These Cancer Causing Agents
The company has now admitted that some of its products contain cancer causing agents despite years of denial and court cases resulting in large class action lawsuits.
When the Center for Environmental Health released test results showing that Pepsi intentionally covered up the presence of high levels of 4-Mel in its popular soft drinks in 2013, the company denied both the presence of this chemical in its beverages and the fact that it was dangerous. 4-Mel, which is short for 4-Methylimidazole, is a compound that is formed in the manufacturing of caramel coloring, and is a known carcinogen.
Since then, the drinks maker has fought against complying with California state requirements to place a cancer warning label on the beverages that contain the ingredient, which include not only Pepsi, but also Diet Pepsi and Pepsi One.
Settlement in class action lawsuit
Now, a settlement in a class action lawsuit against Pepsi has gained preliminary approval from a federal judge in California. As part of the proposed settlement, Pepsi has agreed to ensure its caramel coloring’s 4-Mel levels do not exceed 100 parts per billion in products that are being shipped for sale within the U.S. They will also be required to test the soda using specific protocols.
The soft drink giant also agreed to these measures in a different lawsuit that was settled in a California state court last year. The new settlement, however, expands the reach of these measures from California to the entire country.
Pepsi failed to warn consumers that its drinks contain known carcinogens
The lawsuit accused Pepsi of failing to warn people that its beverages contain 4-Mel, which California has officially recognized as a cancer-causing chemical.
A 2014 Consumer Reports test showed that the 4-Mel in Pepsi exceeded the permitted level of 29 micrograms per bottle or can, which would mean that they were in violation of common law and consumer protection statutes in the state of California.
Violates Prop 65 in California
In particular, this violates California’s Proposition 65, which has been in place since 1985, and requires manufacturers to provide consumers with clear warnings when their products will expose them to toxic or cancer-causing chemicals.
The state’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment set the cutoff at 29 micrograms because that level creates a risk of cancer of one in 100,000.
Citing a 2013 Mintel and Leatherhead Food Research report, Consumer Reports said that caramel coloring is the world’s most widely used food coloring. At the time, Pepsi tried to say that because Prop 65 refers to exposure per day rather than exposure per can, and that the average amount of diet soda that its drinkers consume daily is less than a can, there was no need to place a warning on it. Consumer Reports disagreed, however.
“No matter how much consumers drink they don’t expect their beverages to have a potential carcinogen in them. And we don’t think 4-MeI should be in foods at all. Our tests of Coke samples show that it is possible to get to much lower levels,” toxicologist Dr. Urvashi Rangan said.
Is drinking soda really worth risking cancer and obesity?
It simply does not make sense for people to expose themselves unnecessarily to an ingredient that merely serves to color their food, and consumers have the right to be aware of what they are putting in their bodies. The popularity of books like Food Forensics serves to illustrate the growing desire by Americans to know what ingredients their food products contain.
The cancer-causing caramel coloring in Pepsi is not the only reason consumers should steer clear of it. Soft drinks are also believed to be behind the nation’s obesity epidemic.
A UCLA study found that adults who consumed one sugary drink such as a soda every day had a 27 percent higher likelihood of being classified as overweight than those who did not drink such beverages. Moreover, drinking just one soda each day adds up to a total of 39 pounds of sugar each year! That means that regular soda drinkers can cut their risk of obesity and cancer in one fell swoop simply by giving up the habit for good.
Pepsi To Drop 4-MEI As Ingredient From Colas Nationwide
Not long after environmental watchdog group Center for Environmental Health cried foul on the levels of a controversial caramel coloring in Pepsi, soda giant PepsiCo announced its intention to phase out the ingredient nationwide by February 2014.
Pepsi had previously removed the ingredient 4-methylimidazole, or 4-MEI, from Pepsi beverages in California. Last year, the state ruled the ingredient a carcinogen and required companies that use it either to change their products' recipes or clearly label them as containing 4-MEI.
Coca-Cola, which also once used the ingredient, has already changed its formula nationwide.
The Huffington Post spoke with the CEH's communications director, Charles Margulis, who welcomed the move but was less happy about Pepsi's timeline for implementing the change. "We're concerned that it has taken so long [to change the recipe] and that now it's going to take even longer," Margulis said.
Pepsi representative Heather Gleason stressed that the company "moved immediately to meet the new requirements" in California, and that Pepsi without 4-MEI is already on shelves in several states. She did not address questions regarding the reasoning behind the timeline for national changes.
For comparison, Coca-Cola press representative Ben Sheidler said that it had managed to tweak its formulas across North America over a year and a half.
Despite the California ruling and the changes implemented by the two companies, Coca-Cola and Pepsi have both rejected the CEH's assertion that 4-MEI is unsafe.
"We strongly refute any claim that any product we sell anywhere is unsafe. The safety of our products is PepsiCo's top priority, and we abide by the regulatory guidelines everywhere we do business," Pepsi's Gleason said in an email. She also noted that the FDA and other regulatory agencies, including the European Food Safety Authority and Health Canada, consider 4-MEI to be safe.
Gleason also noted that the change was made not out of a safety concern but "in order to maintain a harmonized supply chain" following the California ruling.
Coca-Cola's Sheidler expressed a similar sentiment. “The caramel coloring in our products is safe," he said. "Trace amounts of 4-MEI, a byproduct of the manufacturing process, can be found in the caramel coloring used in many products, including confectionery, cookies, potato chips, beer, donuts, gravy and some of our beverages. But those levels are extremely low."
The Root In Root Beer: Behind This Soda's Toxic Ingredient
A traditional summertime activity across Amish communities (and those who just enjoy some good old-fashioned foamy fun) is the sweet delight of making homemade root beer. Yet, one of the main ingredients used was banned by the FDA for its cancerous connections. Here, we delve into sassafras, safrole, and some of the substitutes makers use to recreate that beloved, old-time root beer flavoring.
If you had a hankering to try making your own root beer, as many in Amish communities are known to do through the summer months across rural Pennsylvania, you might get stuck when the recipe calls for sassafras.
In addition to being the go-to flavoring for a delicious, foamy mug of root beer or root beer-flavored candy and gum of days gone by, sassafras, known by many names including Ague tree, cinnamon wood, and saxifrax, is a plant that is used in a plethora of ways. Once upon a time, it was used to add scent to soap and to flavor toothpastes by major brands. For generations, the root of the plant has been used medicinally to help relieve infections, bronchitis, and for other health conditions. Sassafras oil has been used topically through the ages to soothe arthritis and bug bites.
However, in 1976, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) put the kibosh on its commercial use, citing studies in the 1960s that showed a chemical in sassafras called safrole causes cancer in rats. The American administration aren&apost the only naysayers the European Commission on Health also considers sassafras to be carcinogenic.
According to various interpretations of the study, the rats were given the equivalent of a person drinking 32 bottles of root beer a day. Nonetheless, the root was removed from the beer and has since been replaced with wintergreen and other proprietary flavors by major root beer manufacturers like A&W, Stewart&aposs, and Barq&aposs.
Meanwhile, just in case you were wondering, safrole can also be found in anise, cinnamon, nutmeg, and black pepper.
Folks who make their own root beer don&apost let a little sassafras ban on the major manufacturer&aposs soda recipes hang up their smaller scale operations. In local kitchens, many opt to use an extract that tastes a lot like sassafras, or even a safrole-free sassafras.
Does Your Soda Contain Carcinogens?
Caramel coloring, the stuff used to give sodas their brown color, may sound harmless, but a new study shows it can contain a chemical that's been linked to cancer - and the Food and Drug Administration is checking it out.
Consumer Reports said it found higher-than-necessary levels of a compound called 4-methylimidazole, or 4-MEI, in a dozen brands of soda 4-MEI is an impurity that can form in the manufacture of the coloring.
The drinks tested by Consumer Reports were Sprite, Diet Coke, Coca-Cola, Coke Zero, Dr Pepper, 365 Everyday Value Dr. Snap, Brisk Iced Tea, A&W Root Beer, Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi One and Malta Goya.
Sprite had no significant level of 4-MEI, and consistently low levels were found in Coke products. The highest amounts were found in Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi One and Malta Goya.
The new findings have prompted the FDA to take another look at the chemical. The agency says it has studied the coloring additive for decades, but it will review the new data on its safety, an FDA spokeswoman told the Associated Press .
This is the second study to find overly high levels of 4-MEI in Pepsi beverages. Last July the environmental watchdog group Center for Environmental Health announced similar findings. At the time, Pepsi announced it would change its formula and phase out the ingredient nationally by February.
Coca-Cola reduced the 4-MEI in its beverages nationally in 2012 after working with its supplier to reformulate the caramel-coloring manufacturing process, as NPR reported.
There's no federal limit on levels of 4-MEI in beverages, but in 2012 California required manufacturers to put a cancer warning on their product if it exposed consumers to more than 29 micrograms of 4-MEI a day.
Even that limit is too high - especially because "manufacturers have lower 4-MEI alternatives available to them," Urvashi Rangan, Ph.D., toxicologist and executive director of Consumer Reports' Food Safety & Sustainability Center, said in a press release. "Ideally there would be no 4-MEI in food."
Pepsi says the consumer group's findings are inaccurate. "We have serious questions about Consumer Reports' conclusion," Pepsi spokeswoman Aurora Gonzalez said in an email to NBC News .
She said the soft drink maker had lowered the level of 4-MEI in its California products, as the state law requires, and that it will "voluntarily apply those same standards in the rest of the country" by February.