A carotenoid and color additive (pink, orange or red) derived from mushrooms, crustaceans, fish and eggs. Primarily used in animal feed to enhance coloring (such as in salmon or trout). Occasionally added directly to foods.
While usually consumed in very small quantities, there can be positive health effects as seen with other antioxidant carotenoids. May be found in nutritional supplements and "tanning pills" which are used to color the skin and produce an orange coloring. Some reports indicate that large quantities of canthaxanthin can damage the eye retina and other adverse health effects. The FDA has been trying to ban the pills, but they may still be found illegally via mail order or online.
animal feed, fruit spread, candy, beverages, nutritional supplements, "tanning pills"
Possible Health Effects
If consumed in large quantities (such as in tanning pills), may cause damage to eye retina, loss of night vision and sensitivity to glare, liver injury, and unticaria (a severe itching condition). See Additional Info section.
Copyright May 20, 2010 Be Food Smart
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