The Lancet released a study that found that artificial colors and sodium benzoate increase hyperactivity in three-year-olds and in eight- to nine-year-olds.
The study included 153 three-year-olds and 144 eight- and nine-year-olds. The challenge drinks contained one of two artificial food color additives (Mix A, Mix B) and sodium benzoate. Mix A and B were compared with the placebo mix. The outcomes were measured by a global hyperactivity aggregate (GHA), scores based on parent and teacher observations, and for eight- and nine-year-olds, a computerized attention test.
Mix A significantly increased hyperactivity among the three-year-olds when compared with placebo, although this was not so with Mix B. Eight- and nine-year-old children experienced a significant increase in hyperactive behavior when given Mix A or Mix B. You can read more here: www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article