Put warning labels on food packages. Warn the consumer.
Put warning labels on food packages. Warn the consumer.
Warn the consumer. Make Front-of-Package Warning Labels on Food Products a Law.
Warning labels are designed to inform consumers of potential harm that the product may produce. Manufacturers and suppliers have a duty to warn the public of any potential risks or harm that could occur from the products sold.
Front-of-package food warning labels should become law. Requiring all foods sold in bags, boxes, cans, cartons, flexible packaging, pallets, trays, pouches, containers, carriers, wrappers, or other packaging types to place warning labels on the front of the food package for foods that contain certain chemicals and ingredients known to cause harm. This law is to include to-go packaging at restaurants, including fast-food restaurants.
Foods sold across America contain harmful ingredients and chemicals. These ingredients are detrimental to the health of our citizens, our neighbors.
Several ingredients used in foods that are sold and distributed in the United States are linked to causing cancer, cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, high blood pressure, thyroid problems, inflammation, diabetes, and more.
Through the acknowledgment of the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), FDA (Food and Drug Administration), NIH (The National Institutes of Health), EC (European Commission), USDA (US Department of Agriculture), along with several medical studies – numerous health risks have been linked to the consumption of certain chemicals and ingredients found in foods and their packaging. Several of these ingredients have been regulated and/or banned in other countries.
The United States should require stronger restrictions and public health awareness to help mitigate these risks.
Counties including Israel, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Chile have laws mandating warning labels on packaged foods.
A study held by the Israel Journal of Health Policy Research on the impact of Israel’s Front-of-Package labeling reform has proven to be an effective tool in public health. “The study found that 58.5% reported using the FOP labels to some extent. In addition, 70% indicated a willingness to change to healthier products in the coming year” (Shahrabani).
This is what the United States health and food standards should consist of.
Facts about our country’s health:
- about 65% of adults and 15% of children and adolescents in the US are overweight or obese.
- about 30 million adults were diagnosed with heart disease and 659,000 people die annually from it.
- In 2021 there were about 1.9 million new cancer cases and 608,570 cancer deaths in the United States.
- 34 million Americans have diabetes and 88 million American adults have prediabetes.
Who is behind this petition?
Debra Tendrich, founder of Eat Better Live Better (EBLB.org), a nonprofit that is on a mission to prevent, reverse, and reduce childhood obesity and other diet-related illnesses by providing nutrition education and healthy foods.
After losing 70 pounds and reversing her daughter's medical conditions with just food, Tendrich founded EBLB in 2016 and took action into her own hands.
She realized policy reform on food standards was lacking in the United States, and other countries took their duty to mitigate their public health risks more seriously by placing tight restrictions on harmful chemicals and ingredients.
"We are in a critical time," says Tendrich. "We, as a nation, need to take our health standards to a new level. It is time to take our public health seriously."
To contact Debra in regard to this petition, email WarnTheConsumer@gmail.com
Examples of effective warning labels of consumed items known to cause health risks:
Cigarettes: Surgeon General's Warning: Smoking Causes Lung Cancer, Heart Disease, Emphysema, And May Complicate Pregnancy. SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING: Quitting Smoking Now Greatly Reduces Serious Risks to Your Health.
Alcohol: Warning labels on alcoholic beverages are currently required to warn "of the risks of drinking and driving, operating machinery, drinking while pregnant, and other general health risks."
THE FOOD INDUSTRY IS NEXT.
The goal is to use this movement to collaborate on legislation and make this petition a reality to protect and preserve the health of our country.
List of Harmful Chemicals and Ingredients Used in Foods
Below is a preliminary list of some of the harmful chemicals and ingredients that should require warning labels.
High Fructose Corn Syrup HFCS
Side effects: Weight gain/obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, non-alcoholic liver disease, tooth decay, and gout.
Found in: soft drinks, canned fruits, bread, baked goods, cereals, sweetened dairy products, frozen foods, juice, sauces, dressings, condiments, desserts, fruit preserves, jam, fast food, and more.
Additional Information: CDC warns about sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) and provides a list of known associated diseases.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, HFCS increases appetites and promotes obesity more than regular sugars.
Color Dye Yellow 5, 6, and Red 40
Side effects: Poor concentration, adverse effects in children such as hyperactivity, cancer, allergic reactions,
Found in: soft drinks, juices, baked goods, cereals, canned goods, chips, pickles, condiments, desserts, frozen foods, dessert powders, candy, other foods, gum, medicines, vitamins, meats, and more.
Additional Information: In the European Union, foods with dyes require warning labels and are banned in foods for infants.
According to a study published in 2020 by the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, there were changes in children’s behaviors when exposed to these dyes. Additionally, exposures from over-the-counter medications, such as cold and cough syrup, can exceed FECFA or FDA-acceptable daily intake. Any additional intake from food would increase that exceedance.
BPA Bisphenol A
Side effects: some research has identified effects on the brain and prostate glands of fetuses, infants, and children. Additional effects are increased blood pressure, affect children’s behavior, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. (According to Mayo Clinic)
Found in: water bottles, polycarbonate plastics, metal food cans, bottle caps, food containers, food packaging, and more. (BPAs in food packaging leech into food and drink items for consumer consumption)
Additional Information: CDC claims BPA’s affect the reproductive system of animals.
FDA banned BPA in baby bottles and sippy cups in 2012.
11 states nationwide already have bans and restrictions on the use of BPA’s.
Side effects: increases low-density lipoprotein (“bad”) cholesterol levels, decreased high-density lipoprotein (“good”) cholesterol levels and is associated with an increased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) morbidity and mortality, and all-cause mortality, according to the CDC.
Found in: margarine, packages snacks, baked foods, fried foods, fast foods, coffee creamers, ready-to-use dough, vegetable dough, pancake mixes, and more.
Additional Information: FDA released a determination that Partially Hydrogenated Oils are not safe and banned their use. FDA provided an extension of compliance and, to this day, these oils can be found in foods.
FDA claims that removing these oils can prevent thousands of heart attacks and deaths every year.
Side effects: adverse developmental and reproductive effects, birth defects, reduced IQ, and behavior and attention disorders in children. Considered endocrine-disrupting chemicals and interfere with hormone-regulating processes in the body.
Found in: dairy products, meat and fish, baked goods, instant formulas, processed foods, oils and fats, and fast foods.
Additional Information: The US Consumer Product Safety Commission and the European Union banned specific phthalates in products for children.
FDA recommends pharmaceutical industry to not use phthalates.
Side effects: cancer, reproductive damage, the concern of genotoxicity.
Found in: baked goods, spreads, soups, sauces, dressings, food supplements, and more. (Adds white color to foods).
Additional Information: European Commission banned titanium dioxide to go into effect in the summer of 2022.
Side effects: IBD, IBS, rheumatoid arthritis, skin sensitization, and colon cancer
Found in: ice cream, high-protein drinks, milk including almond milk, dairy products
Additional Information: Banned in European Union.
USDA decided organic food companies may continue use, even though a vote to ban its use by the influential organic advisory committee.
An inflammatory agent that is used to test anti-inflammatory drugs.
Side effects: asthma, respiratory illness
Found in: bread, bagels, tortillas, pizza, pastries, fast food items, and other products.
Additional Information: Banned in Europe, Australia, and Singapore
In 2014, Subway stopped using this chemical from its bread.
Used to bleach flour and make the dough stronger, used to make yoga mats and rubber shoe soles.
Side effects: gastrointestinal effects, flatulence, bloating, diarrhea, loose stool, malabsorption of fat-soluble vitamins (FDA).
Found in: chips, crackers, desserts, pastries, fried foods, margarine, cheeses, and more products.
Additional Information: banned in the European Union and Canada.
BVO Brominated Vegetable Oil
Side effects: irritates skin and mucus membranes, headaches, memory loss, impaired balance and coordination, and nerve problems. Competes with iodine for receptor sites in the body which can lead to hyperthyroidism, autoimmune disease ad cancer.
Found in: citrus soft drinks, sports drinks, and mixed cocktails.
Additional Information: banned in Europe and Japan.
A patented flame retardant for plastic.
According to the CDC, the main ingredient of BVO is bromine which is a chemical linked to kidney and brain damage, birth defects, and other medical issues.
BHA Butylated Hydroxyanisole and BHT Butylated Hydroxytoluene
Side effects: contribute to cancer and tumors according to the National Institute of Health (NIH).
Found in: cereal, baked goods, animal feeds, packaging, snack foods, gum, meats, butter, dehydrated potatoes, beer, and more.
Additional Information: banned in Europe, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Japan.
Studies in mice and rats cause liver, kidney, and thyroid problems along with affecting lung function, blood coagulation, and tumor promoter.
FDA already places limits on these chemicals in foods.
GMO Genetically Modified Organism
Side effects: have the potential to cause harm to human and animal health and ecosystems. Can reduce plant diversity and is hard to stop the spread of GMO crops.
Found in: cornstarch, corn syrup, corn oil, soybean oil, canola oil, or granulated sugar, some fresh fruits and vegetables including corn, soybeans, sugar beets, canola, potatoes, summer squash, apples, and papayas.
Additional Information: banned in European Union, France and Germany.
USDA announced the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard to take effect January 2022.
Nitrates and Nitrites
Side effects: can cause less oxygen to be available for proper bodily functions including bluish skin from lack of oxygen, difficulty breathing, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration from loss of bodily fluids, fast pulse, dizziness, weakness, coma, and/or convulsions. Nitrate water mixed with baby formula can cause serious health effects, a fetus near 30 weeks is vulnerable to toxicity. (According to CDC)
Found in: meat, ham, bacon, deli meat, hot dogs, and other foods.
Additional information: added to processed meats as a preservative.
A French Parliamentary report recommends nitrates in processed meats should end by 2025. They are used to extend shelf life and prevent oxidization of processed meats which is linked to higher cancer risks.
Nitrates convert to nitrites which can cause harm.
Side effects: cancer
Found in: anything that contains flour
Additional information: bromated flour must be labeled a carcinogen according to California’s Proposition 65 law.
Panera Bread, and several other restaurants, stopped using this ingredient along with BHA, ADA, and BHT.
Banned in the European Union, Canada, China, South Korea, and some South American countries.
Side effects: cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and decreased intelligence.
Found in: seafood, rice and rice products, mushrooms, poultry, fruit juices, and other food items.
Additional information: the IARC, a part of the World Health Organization, classifies arsenic and inorganic arsenic compounds as carcinogenic to humans.
Classified by the US National Toxicology Program as a human carcinogenic.
Shahrabani, Shosh. “The impact of Israel's Front-of-Package labeling reform on consumers' behavior and intentions to change dietary habits.” Israel journal of health policy research vol. 10,1 44. 11 Aug. 2021, doi:10.1186/s13584-021-00482-w