Aren’t you glad you’re failsafe? Research shows two groups of food additives – and fragranced products - are even worse than we thought


Most failsafers start avoiding food additives – and fragranced products - because of their effects on children’s behaviour.  They often discover that adult health is affected too.  Some people may think we are being fussy but now we get the last word.  New studies have led to eye-catching media headlines such as:

 Gender-bending chemicals in CEREAL could make you fat

Yes, bacon really is killing us

Is hairspray really wrecking the planet?

Synthetic antioxidants BHA 320, BHT 321, propyl gallate 310

Used as preservatives in fats and vegetable oils; the products that contain them; also in food packaging “to preserve freshness”. In 2006, these antioxidants won our worst additive competition because they are often hidden in our foods.

Child behaviour: My 8 year old son was diagnosed with Chronic Tic Disorder. He could not sit still, with tics in his face, neck, shoulders and arms … when he stopped eating hot chips the tics went away. I have since tried him on hot chips and the same thing happens. The culprit is the synthetic antioxidant 320 (and/or 319) that appears in most chips and oil used for deep frying. – from story [471]

Adult health: I am a 43 mother with microscopic colitis that was triggered by a single episode of food poisoning ten years ago …. the RPA elim diet showed my big 3 "no-no's" include  synthetic antioxidants such as BHA 320 … causing cramping and diarrhoea. – Kate, from story [800]

NEW FINDING These additives are now regarded as endocrine disruptors that can make you fat by interfering with satiety signals, possibly causing you to overeat - as well as other health effects.

Nitrates and nitrites (249-252)

These preservatives are found in processed meats such as ham, bacon and hot dogs.

Child behaviour: Our two and a half year old son had difficulty with stuttering for a few months.  After my sister-in-law, a nurse, told us about the potential dangers of nitrates for children, especially contributions to developmental delays, we removed all nitrates from our son's diet and within about a week the stuttering was gone. Yesterday, our son went on an outing to the zoo with my mother. Strangely, his stuttering returned full-force today. I called my mother to ask what he had for lunch and dinner yesterday. The glaring answer:  a HOTDOG – story [396]

Adult health: I put up with dreadful headaches every day for about 15 years, along with muscle cramps in my neck & shoulders. I was on a muscle relaxant for years ... I went off the medication but had a return of the problem after eating bacon & ham  ... I am now convinced it was due to nitrates, and I have proven it a couple of times since - for years I thought I was just being uptight!! - Julie from story [956]

NEW FINDING There is longstanding evidence that these additives can contribute to colon cancer, but now a new study suggests a link to breast cancer as well.


Fragranced products

Fragrances in household items like deodorants, hair spray, shampoo, air fresheners, cleaning products.

Child behaviour:  After 3 week of elimination diet our daughter was a new calm tolerant child ….  Weeks later: Her behaviour and concentration have plummeted …. The only thing we have done differently is that we have a new hairspray …  Even though her diet is true elimination could one small spray of this hairspray each morning be the culprit??? She is miserable and we are back to being exhausted with her. Update a few days later: Well, our daughter has already settled down after about 2-3 days. She even said this morning gosh I feel better. – Nic, from story [1018]

Adult health: I always get a rash from perfumes but never suspected that perfume could be the cause of my headaches too, until I read your website. -  Marilyn from story [632]

NEW FINDING In Western cities, emissions from perfumes and other scented consumer products are now causing MORE air pollution than from cars, other vehicles and oil refineries.


Read more

Gender-bending chemicals in CEREAL could make you fat, landmark study claims

Our factsheet about synthetic antioxidants

Yes, bacon really is killing us: Decades’ worth of research proves that chemicals used to make bacon do cause cancer. So how did the meat industry convince us it was safe? By Bee Wilson

Our factsheet about nitrates/nitrites

Is hairspray really wrecking the planet? Michael Marshall, New Scientist

Our factsheet about fumes and perfumes

Introduction to food intolerance