Chennai Tops In Childhood Cancer Ranking

Childhood Cancer & Chennai

childhood cancer

 

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As a resident of Chennai, there are a lot of things that give me a great feel and makes me feel proud to say that I belong to this place. For example, the youths of Tamilnadu, the culture, the hospitality of people, Chennai Super Kings, Pradeep John aka Tamilnadu Weatherman etc. I can go on further with a big list. Though we have a conflict of interest when it comes to the languages of other regions, I will still say that Chennai is one of the safest places for everyone who chooses to stay in. But, lately, it has become different once I learned about the instances of Childhood Cancer in Chennai.

It makes me feel uncomfortable when I understand that we as a society overlook a lot of things that are very important for us and for our kids.

How many of us know that in India, Chennai tops in the count of kids suffering from Childhood Cancer closely followed by Delhi?

September – The Month Of Childhood Cancer Awareness:

childhood cancer

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We are in the month of January 2018 today and it is not September. I too was not aware of the ranking of Chennai, in-line with Childhood Cancer until last week. I am sure there would be many among us who do not know about it until now.

But, if we look at ourselves a bit deep, aren’t we lacking knowledge about childhood cancer?

We need to agree that most of us believe the media which diverts us with unwanted programs rather than helping us understand what is true and honest.

What do we get out of watching a group of celebrities living in a closed house for 100 days?

When we have a great volume of television viewers in India, one section of the media could have very well helped us with information about Childhood Cancer. I don’t think that we have or had any program until now dedicated to the health of children.

I am not blaming the whole media but some sections. Because, it is only through a Tamil movie named “Velaikaaran – 2017” I came to know that Chennai stands on the top in childhood cancer.

Media plays a greater role when it comes to creating awareness among people. But that is not always and not all the sections of media. It is our responsibility to filter the information from what we listen and view to make it worth the watch.

The Statistics:

As I cannot say that Childhood Cancer is reported high in Chennai purely based on a movie. I had gone ahead in search of more details over the internet on the Childhood Cancer occurrences in Chennai. My findings had confirmed that Chennai had been in the top position in line with Childhood Cancer and still there among the top five cities with a change in rankings every year.

You can find the related threads in the reference section at the bottom of this post. The information below is not only for the people in Chennai but for everyone in India and rest of the world.

What Do We Overlook?

Most of us as parents tend to buy food items and junk food which our kids ask whenever we hit a grocery store. It is quite normal for the kids to get attracted by the packing, free gifts, tattoos and the product colors. In that movie, they say that the appealing colors and the visual effects of the products that are displayed on the television do the marketing job.

Childhood Cancer

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When the kids view those advertisements, it creates an interest in their brain. What they viewed gets stored in their memory and make them want that particular bubble gums, candies, jellies etc.

We all try to ensure that our kids get what they like to have. Isn’t it?

Sometimes, just because we never had those during our childhood we tend to get whatever they ask for especially food items. But, how many of us really go through the ingredients list and color codes defined on top of the food items wrapper?

There are certain ingredients that are used in candies, sweets, mouth fresheners and other food items which causes childhood cancer.

How many of us can say that we go through the ingredients of the food items before letting our kids eat?

Do we know about the colors used in tiny cumin candies and our favorite yellow/orange colored ladoos?

Childhood Cancer

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If you feel that you do know, then you are awesome. If you are one among the rest like me without much idea, then please be sure to check it at least from now.

It’s Not Just Candies and Jellies:

Childhood Cancer causing ingredients are available in most of the consumables nowadays. Its presence is not just there in the candies and jellies with appealing colors but also in consumables like toothpaste, cosmetics etc.

Childhood Cancer

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By the age of 5, most of the little angels in our home starts wearing lipstick over their tender lips. They do not know the reason why they wear it but the color makes them like it and they do replicate us.

Sometimes, we parents not only wear lipstick to ourselves but also apply for our little ones. There is nothing wrong with that if you are very sure about the ingredients in it. But, whether we know about it or not is a question.

What Color Is Banned / Permitted?

Permitted Food Colors In India:

As per the information dated Mar 10, 2014, in BIS (Bureau of Indian Standards) website, below are the food colors permitted to use in food items in India.

Childhood Cancer

Though we have the above list, there is a study made in the year 2003 saying that most of the colored foods in India exceed the permissible limit.

Permitted Food Colors In Other Countries:

Please check the reference section for threads on permissible colors based on country.

The Killer Additives & Their Colors:

The more colorful the food items and cosmetics are more might be the presence of killer additives in it. Here are some of the additives that might play a role in childhood cancer if used with less caution.

Red No. 40 (aka) Allura red

Childhood Cancer

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– Widely used food dye in the USA and many other countries in the world.

– Present in some of the gelatin-based desserts, colored yogurts, Kid Cuisine Kung Fu Panda products, some of the rolls and frostings and more.

– Other names for Red No. 40 are Red 40, FD & C Red No. 40, C.I. Food Red 17, FD and C Red No. 40, Allura Red AC, C. I. 16035

Red No. 3 (aka) Erythrosine / Carmoisine

Childhood Cancer

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– Mostly found in chewing gums, baking products like cake icing and candies. Also used on pistachio shells, sausages, and some cherries.

Carmoisine

– Another artificial food color in the range of red to maroon color.

– Used in cough syrups, drinks, jelly crystals, ice creams etc.

– Not an approved color in the USA, Canada but still in use in Europe and other countries.

Yellow No. 5 (aka) Tartrazine

Childhood Cancer

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– Linked to Thyroid cancer, blurred vision, and few other complaints.

– Commonly used artificial green or yellow color around the world.

– Holds the name E102 on the products.

– Foods that may contain Tartrazine are Cotton Candies, Marshmallows, Pillsbury pastries, Custard Powders, cookies, and biscuits.

– Also used in some carbonated drinks like Mountain Dew, energy drinks, cocktails, flavored corn, chips, cereals like Museli and corn flakes.

– Cosmetic products like soaps, sanitizers, shower gels and on the products like inks, face paints etc.

Yellow No. 6 (aka) Sunset yellow

– A petroleum-derived dye used in cosmetics and drugs.

– Restricted and banned as a food additive in Norway, Sweden, and Finland.

Blue No. 1 (aka) Brilliant blue & Blue No. 2 (aka) Indigotine

Childhood Cancer

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– Mostly used in Baked foods, cereals, and beverages.

– Blue No.1 is derived from coal tar. It is banned in European countries.

– Blue No. 2 is the one used to make the blue jeans blue.

– Linked to behavior problems in children and high dosage in rats showed signs of brain cancers in rats.

Sodium Benzoate

– A common food additive with an ability to deprive the cells of oxygen, break down the immune system and cause cancer.

– Used mainly to preserve food items. Though used in low amounts on food items to preserve it is deadly if combined with vitamin C & E food items as they are linked to blood cancers.

– Found in jams, carbonated drinks etc.

– Also known as E211.

Green No. 3 (aka) Fast Green FCF

Childhood CancerImage Credit: Pixabay

– Frequently used in candies.

– Banned in Europe and least used dye in the USA.

– Linked to testicle and bladder cancers in lab animals.

– Also known as E143, Food green 3, FD&C Green No. 3, Green 1724, Solid Green FCF.

How To Avoid These Dyes Based Foods?

  • The next time, you buy something for the kid, do spend time on checking the label and for the expiry dates for all the products.
  • Do not buy candies just because the kid loves the free gifts that come with the food item. If the kid likes the tattoo, just buy the tattoo and give it. Similarly, if the kid likes the container or toy just empty the content from it and handover the toy to them.
  • Restrict yourself as well as the kid from eating too much of mouth fresheners from the restaurants. Available as packed under the restaurant name and available sometimes in loose too. When we are not sure about it, it is better to stay away from it.
  • If the particular product does not have ingredients detail maintained properly on it by chance, please ignore it.
  • Though the dyes have childhood cancer-causing substances in it, they are still used in food items and other products considering the permissible amount. But, too much of anything is a problem.
  • If the kid likes to eat more junk foods like Lays, Kinder or similar then it is a must to restrict ourselves from buying it for the kids. Yes, kids tantrums would be there but it is okay when compared to childhood cancer.
  • Understand the color barcode that we see on the consumables like toothpaste and soaps.Black indicates the presence of chemicals.
    Green indicates natural.

References:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chennai/Chennai-has-largest-number-of-child-cancer-cases-Delhi-second-on-list/articleshow/28720811.cms

http://www.newindianexpress.com/world/2017/apr/12/childhood-cancer-cases-up-by-13-per-cent-over-two-decades-who-1592857.html

http://www.indianpediatrics.net/mar2014/218.pdf

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ijc.23428/full

http://icmr.nic.in/icmrsql/archive/2016/7.pdf

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21668047

http://www.indianjcancer.com/article.asp?issn=0019-509X;year=2016;volume=53;issue=4;spage=511;epage=512;aulast=Bashar

http://www.who.int/ceh/capacity/cancer.pdf

http://www.indianjcancer.com/article.asp?issn=0019-509X;year=2009;volume=46;issue=4;spage=264;epage=273;aulast=Arora

http://www.health.com/adhd/9-food-additives-that-may-affect-adhd#yellow-no-6-0

https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/food-nutrition/food-safety/food-additives/lists-permitted/3-colouring-agents.html

http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/code/Pages/default.aspx

https://www.fda.gov/ForIndustry/ColorAdditives/ColorAdditiveInventories/ucm115641.htm

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2010/07/popular-food-dyes-linked-to-cancer-adhd-and-allergies/#.Wldd5TfhUdU

http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-features/tp-sundaymagazine/all-the-colours-of-food/article3232341.ece