Archives – FAWA 1978 December

Letter from Dr. Feingold to the Feingold Association of the United States

Greetings to All Members of FAUS,

This past quarter has been very productive.

Great progress has been made in public awareness, acceptance and application of the diet. This has resulted in increasing numbers of children enjoying a corrected behavior; improved scholastic performance; a serene home life; and without conflict with peers.

Of equal importance is the progress at the academic level.

James M. Swanson, PhD, Senior Research Associate, Child Development Clinic of the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada, has written me on June 21, 1978:

We have completed the initial phase of our work, and I am going to present the enclosed paper about our study at a NATO conference in Ottawa this week. I thought you would want to be aware of our findings, since I believe we have documented the link between hyperactivity and artificial food color that you have suggested.

Dr. Swanson has informed me by phone that further studies have confirmed his preliminary observations.

In addition, the first controlled animal studies on rats will be reported September 30th to the Child Neurology Society by Dr. Bennett Shaywitz. The importance of these observations is expressed in the closing paragraph of Dr. Shaywitz’ report:

Our results suggest that the administration of food colorings may affect normal development, and they mandate a more critical evaluation of the effects of food colorings in both animals and children. Our results also suggest that hyperactivity should not be the sole factor investigated, and that measures of the effects of food coloring on cognitive function must be carefully evaluated in any future study.

The FDA study conducted jointly by the Kaiser-Permanente Medical Care Program and the University of California at Berkeley is concluded. The data are being analyzed by computer. Results should be available following review by the FDA. There is no definite date for release of results.

I feel we are well on our way. We are beginning to get support of the academic community, which will lead to a broadened involvement by professionals. With this concerted action many unanswered questions should be resolved.

I thank each of you for your confidence, your dedication and your efforts, which made these successes possible.

Keep up the good work. We have only begun.


Ben F. Feingold, MD
Chief Emeritus
Department of Allergy

Note: Details of the Shaywitz study may be found here


Going Bananas?

One family has reported a reaction to bananas, though they seemed to have been tolerated previously. Carlton Fredericks writes in the November ’78 issue of Prevention, “Ruling from the Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Pesticide Programs: because of an epidemic of banana leaf spot disease in Honduras, the edible pulp of your banana may now contain 0.05 ppm of the fungicide chlorothalonil, known tothe chemists as tetrachloroisophthalonitrile.” Federal Register 5-26-78.

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