Yet Another DIY Yogurt Advantage…No Bugs!

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July 25, 2013 by Dr. Sana Keller

yogurt and fruitAs a follow up to my recent posting on DIY Yogurt (6/14) here is an excerpt from the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI):

“If you eat Dannon’s Fruit on the Bottom Strawberry, Raspberry, Cherry, or Boysenberry yogurt, or the Strawberry variety of Dannon’s Oikos Greek yogurt, you are eating carmine—an extract made from the dried and pulverized dead bodies of the cochineal insect. (Author’s comment: Ewwwhhh!)  That dye is also used in two flavors of Dannon’s Light and Fit Greek line, as well as in six of its Activia yogurts!

Using red food dye of any kind in these products is deceptive, since consumers rightly expect that the pink or red color in their strawberry, raspberry, cherry, or boysenberry yogurt comes from the fruit pictured on the label.  And not some extract made from six-legged creepy crawlies. But it certainly saves Dannon money by replacing berries or cherries with a food coloring.

For most people, carmine is safe.  But for a small number of consumers, it can be a serious problem.  Some experience hives after consuming products with carmine.  Others have more potentially life-threatening anaphylactic shock.  At the very least, Dannon should indicate on labels that carmine comes from an insect.  Vegetarians who don’t have a dictionary handy would be especially interested to know.

Yet another reason to make your own (way yummier!) yogurt by purchasing plain yogurt (or plain Greek yogurt) and adding your own choice of fresh fruits…pineapple, kiwi, peaches, blueberries, apples, pears, bananas, plums, grapes…throw in some raw walnuts or almonds as well for healthy fats. Enjoy your bug-free yogurt! yogurt and fruit 2

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