Mom petitions for M&Ms to change: Claims candy dye is “making her son hyperactive”

Posted on: 2:05 pm, January 8, 2014, by and , updated on: 02:07pm, January 8, 2014

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They’re some of America’s favorite little treats.

So why is there a push to make a change to M&Ms?

Some parents say the coloring makes their kids hyperactive.

Now a petition has been launched to make the manufacturer adjust how the candy gets its color, which varies in different parts of the world.

Mars Inc. primarily uses artificial food coloring for the candy in the United States, but M&Ms derive their candy coloring from natural sources in Europe.

Now a Change.org petition begun by Renee Shutters and the Center for Science in the Public Interest is calling on Mars to stop using artificial dyes in its American M&Ms as well. As of Tuesday morning, the petition had more than 142,000 supporters.

Shutters says her son Trenton showed noticeable improvements in mood and attention span after she removed artificial coloring from his diet a few year ago. M&Ms were his favorite candy.

“I just could not believe that something so small could make that big of a difference,” Shutters says.

European lawmakers moved to require warning labels on foods containing certain artificial colorings after a 2007 study found a slight increase in hyperactivity among children consuming a mixture of the dyes and a preservative.

The required label reads: “May have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children.”