150 of 200 children [75%] improved on an open trial of a diet free of synthetic food coloring, and deteriorated upon introduction of foods containing synthetic colorings.
34 other “clear” or “suspected” reactors plus 20 “controls” were studied in a separate double blind study. 82.5% of the “suspected reactors,” 27% of the “uncertain reactors,” and 10% of the “controls” reacted to a mild single-item challenge of tartrazine (Yellow #5). The kind of reaction and length of time the children were affected depended on the dose.
QUOTE: “A dose response effect was observed.”
NOTE: Notice on the chart above (click it to enlarge), that this dose effect was obtained by using 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, and 50 mg food dye — this is quite an accomplishment and a tribute to the sensitivity of the Rowe questionnaire over the older Conners’ questionnaire for monitoring reactions.
NOTE: The 200 children who tried the 6-week diet program were drawn from a total population of 800 children who had been referred to the clinic for evaluation of possible ADHD. These were not children specifically chosen because of the likelihood to be diet-responsive.
NOTE: 10% of the controls reacted to the Yellow 5 challenge — remember, this was a group not expected to react to food dye, and not diagnosed with any disorder.