Chemical found in soda linked to cancer

Chemical that gives soda a brown color caused cancer in animals

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – You may be reaching for something beside soda to go with your dinner. New research reveals a chemical in its coloring can have some potentially harmful effects. But how much do people pay attention to the ingredients in their food and drinks?

We know soda isn’t the healthiest choice for a drink; but Consumer Reports found a chemical in soda that gives its brown color, actually causes cancer in animals. One woman told 22News she begged her son to give up his favorite drink; it was a talk with his doctor that sealed the deal.

Eileen King said, “He said to me I’ve given up soda. I guess he had his blood pressure taken and he’s only 21 and his blood pressure was up. They said sodium.”

The Food and Drug Administration said there’s no evidence that chemical in the coloring will be harmful to humans. But will it make people think twice before reaching for a can? Some shoppers told 22News when it comes to buying groceries, it sometimes comes down to cost over content.

“I pay attention to the prices and I compare those. Stores have their own brands and then there are the famous brands. I compare to see if the ingredients are mostly the same,” Margaret Harris of Springfield said.

The FDA wants to improve outdated nutrition labels to make them easier to read.

Health experts want the calories and added sugar to be more noticeable on packaging. They also want consumers to have a better understanding of recommended serving size, which is often not what’s in the whole container or package.

Ultimately what you pull off the shelves is up to you, but the FDA wants to help consumers be more informed before they make those selections.