3 min read


By Janine Rotter, Director of Fitness Nutrition for UNBOWED

What additive is in other supplement brands that you won't find in ours?


And here's why we eliminated it from ours.

It may be super cool that your BCAA or Pre-Workout is a great, fun color, but research has shown that those color additives may just be the culprit of your underlying sensitivity and/or allergies.

People who unknowingly suffer from dye reactions found in many supplements can experience mild to even severe reactions!

Among the most common reactions researched are: 

✅ Sleep problems

✅ Headaches, stomach aches, and vomiting

✅ Mood swings

✅ Hyperactivity

✅ Violence/Aggression

✅ Irritability

✅ Restlessness

✅ Depression

✅ Lack of attention

✅ Eczema and hives and/or itchy skin

✅ Breathing problems

✅ Swelling of the face

Severe reactions are similar to those of other food allergy reactions such as:

✅ Difficulty breathing

✅ Dizziness

✅ Fainting

✅ Low blood pressure

✅ Trouble breathing

**Regulatory agencies, like the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), have concluded that the dyes do not pose significant health risks being all of the artificial dyes that are currently used in food have gone through testing for toxicity in "animal studies."

Not everyone agrees with that conclusion. Interestingly, some food dyes are deemed safe in one country, but banned from human consumption in another, making it truly confusing for anyone to assess their safety.

Not to mention ... why are some dyes approved in some countries but banned in others? Green No. 3, also known as Fast Green, is approved by the FDA but banned in Europe. 

Quinoline Yellow, Carmoisine, and Ponceau are examples of food colorings allowed in the EU but banned in the US.

And as of 2010, in the UK a warning is required on the label of any food that contains artificial food dyes.

So if that leaves you scratching your head and thinking that you may be suffering from one or more of the symptoms listed above, our lead Certified Nutrition Specialist suggests it may be worth it for you to do an elimination of dyes and test it out for yourself. 

It's simple. 

Read the ingredients on the nutrition label on the back of any packaged foods you consume and look for any of these culprits: 

🚫 Red 40

🚫 Yellow 5

🚫 Yellow 6

🚫 Red 3

🚫 Blue 1

🚫 Blue 2

🚫 Green 3

Cut these and any other dye additives out of your diet for at least 30-45 days.

Purchase Whey, BCAA and PRE_Workout Substitutes that you can incorporate into your routine that does not have dyes in them while you are on your elimination. 

Introduce one dye back in at a time and then don't eat any foods that contain that specific dye or reintroduce anything else new during a 2–4 day period to journal any symptoms that may arise.

Because an allergy will be an immediate reaction, however, a sensitivity usually doesn’t appear as soon as you reintroduce it back in. Instead, you might have symptoms hours or even days after reintroduction, so it is important to watch for symptoms for those 2-4 days.

If you don’t have any symptoms, great! It would appear that your body does not have any reactions to that specific dye. 

But let's say you do experience symptoms? In that case, stop consuming any products that contain that dye for a longer period of time—about 3–6 months—before you try adding it back to your diet.

You will need to repeat this process for each dye you have eliminated. 

And as always, our team of experts is here to help you if needed. 

We are excited to hear if you choose to cut dyes from your diet and how you feel after doing so. Be sure to tag us on your DYE-FREE elimination journey on Facebook or Instagram @UNBOWEDNation.