How common are adverse reactions to food additives (colours, preservatives, antioxidants and flavours)?

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How common are adverse reactions to food additives (colours, preservatives, antioxidants and flavours)?

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The contribution of food additives to adverse reactions to food appears to be very small, but the true prevalence is unkown. The evidence shows that food additives provoke or exacerbate existing conditions, but do not induce them. Food additives are defined as “chemical substances”. However, there are allergenic substances of biological origin (such as guar gum), which might also be considered as additives. These are able to induce allergic reactions.