Fedup Newsletters


Newsletter of the Food Intolerance Network

October – December 2009


The Food Intolerance Network supports people worldwide using a low-chemical elimination diet free of additives, low in salicylates, amines and flavour enhancers (FAILSAFE) for health, behaviour and learning problems.

To see this FAILSAFE Newsletter in colour on the web: FAILsaf62.htm

The FAILSAFE Newsletter is available free by email. Just send your email address to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Increasing recognition of annatto as a potentially harmful additive

Food labelling review underway


Research: Effect of childhood diet on adult violence, Mandatory fortification of flour and bread with folic acid, Rapid weight gain associated with antipsychotic drugs.

In brief: New RPAH Elimination Diet Handbook available, Anti-additive movement in the US

Readers' stories: [858]-[885]

Product updates: detailed help and information.

Questions: detailed help and information.

Cooks Corner: Hints: Birthday parties, a 'dairy free' yoghurt alternative, Lunchbox Mini Pies. Quick Carob Fudge, Carob icecream, Dr Dengate’s UGF (Ultimate Gluten-Free) bread, Failsafe Spring Rolls.



Hello everyone


Welcome to those who are joining us for the first time in this newsletter as a result of our 2009 Fed Up roadshow, and thanks to the many who have written with news of their success since our visit, such as this mother from southern NSW: “I just want to say a huge thank you for your visit to our town a few months ago. I, and many of my friends, have already noticed a huge difference in our children physically and emotionally since implementing many aspects of failsafe”.


As annatto (natural colour 160b) becomes more common in our food supply, we are hearing more stories of its effects. Even more alarming is that it is widely used in foods aimed at babies and young children. A new report in a medical journal tells of 40 years of irritable bowel symptoms due entirely to annatto in common foods and we have included some similar reader reports.


In other reader reports, the extraordinary account of a 12-year-old whose disabling juvenile arthritis was due entirely to flavour enhancers; the heartbreaking story of a baby who was left to scream until hoarse in a sleep clinic when all he needed was a change in diet; diet-related tonsillitis; flavour enhancer-related irregular heart beats and labile blood pressure; two autistic children who became ‘normal, healthy children’ on diet and many more. Plus some yummy treats for Xmas.


As this Newsletter comes to you, I am leaving for Sydney as a NSW finalist in the Australian of the Year Awards. Many thanks to Network members who worked so hard on a convincing submission! It’s a great honour and an opportunity for gaining a higher public profile for food intolerance.


I’d also like to thank everyone who has helped to spread the word this year by contributing to the newsletter, joining groups, attending talks, contacting manufacturers, buying additive-free food, lobbying or sending recipes. Howard and I wish you all a very happy holiday season


Happy failsafeing - Sue Dengate



Increasing recognition of annatto as a potentially harmful additive


Use of natural colour annatto 160b is increasing in our food supply as artificial colours are phased out. Annatto is the only natural colour that can cause as many adverse reactions as artificial colours although unfortunately it is rarely recognised by authorities. The situation may be about to change with two reports of severe adverse reactions to annatto in this month’s medical journals. One is an account of an anaphylactic reaction to annatto in cheese, the other a description of 40 years of irritable bowel syndrome due to annatto. Published in the latest issue of the Journal of Clinic Gastroenterology, it is the first report of IBS and annatto to appear in the medical literature and is accompanied by a comment from MH Floch, Clinical Professor of Medicine at Yale University School of Medicine. Professor Floch’s editorial concludes ‘It is clear that annatto is common in our foods, it is clear that it is not known as a significant producer of allergic responses, and it is unknown to most of our practitioners dealing with allergies and the irritable bowel syndrome. Therefore, it behooves us to begin studies in investigating the role of dyes such as annatto in the production of the symptoms of the irritable bowel syndrome’.


We are concerned that annatto is considered to be a safe additive in food especially targeting young children, such as in yoghurts and in the Heinz Little Kids soft fruit bars. Thank you to Sanitarium for recently removing annatto from their product So Good Vanilla Bliss soy ice cream.


Further reading: Stein HL, Annatto and IBS and Floch MH. Annatto, diet, and the irritable bowel syndrome. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2009;43(10):905-6. Ebo DG et al, Allergy for cheese: evidence for an IgE-mediated reaction from the natural dye annatto. Allergy. 2009;64(10):1558-60. You can also see an account of Marlene’s Story: 40 years of IBS due to annatto in the Reader Stories below.


Food labelling review underway


The long-awaited review of food labelling in Australia and New Zealand is underway, announced in October with response required by 20 November! FIN members have prepared a draft response to get clear, honest and transparent information for consumers without increasing the regulatory burden on the food industry. Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you want to see the full submission.


Here is an example of a biscuit Ingredient Panel that is current and legal:



INGREDIENTS: wheat flour, vegetable oils, sugar, flavours, milk solids nonfat, tapioca starch, salt, yeast extract, raising agent.


Made in a factory that also processes nuts and soy.



And here is an example of how the same Ingredients Panel would appear if FIN Recommendations were accepted:



INGREDIENTS: wheat flour, vegetable oil (canola GM, palm, Malaysia, antioxidant 319), sugar, flavours (colour 102, preservative 211), milk solids nonfat, tapioca starch (Indonesia, contains sulphites), salt, flavour enhancer: yeast extract (621), raising agent (500).


Warnings: colour 102 may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children. Sulphites are associated with asthma in children




Books and DVD now available through www.fedup.com.au


You can buy Sue’s books and DVD individually or as “the set” (Fed Up, the Failsafe Cookbook & the DVD Fed Up with Children’s Behaviour) at competitive prices.





Effect of childhood diet on adult violence: children who eat sweets and chocolate every day are more likely to be violent as adults, according to a Cardiff University study in the British Journal of Psychiatry. Researchers looked at data on almost 17,500 people and found that 69 per cent of the participants who were violent at the age of 34 had eaten sweets and chocolate nearly every day during childhood, compared to 42 per cent who were non-violent. As BBC online reader Yachydda from Wrexham commented: "Sweets themselves do not have an effect on making a child violent, but E-numbers do ..." http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8281147.stm.


Mandatory fortification of flour and bread with folic acid: Ireland, the UK and NZ have all delayed mandatory fortification of bread with folic acid on consumer safety grounds, but FSANZ went ahead in September 2009. Organic flour and bread are the only way to avoid it in Australia now. http://www.foodlegal.com.au/bulletin/article/2009-11/scientific_review_of_folic_acid_fortification_causes_for_concern/.


Rapid weight gain associated with antipsychotic drugs: US researchers have reported that children aged 4-19 taking 4 antipsychotic drugs risperidone (Risperdal), olanzapine (Zyprexa), quetiapine (Seroquel) and aripiprazole (Abilify) gained an average of nearly one kg per week over the 12 week trial compared to controls. Correll CU et al, Cardiometabolic risk of second-generation antipsychotic medications during first-time use in children and adolescents. JAMA. 2009;302(16):1765-73. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/business/28psych.html?_r=1&em.




Diet not working as well as you'd hoped?

One tiny mistake can make a huge difference. For fine-tuning, see the Checklist of common mistakes. Readers tell us this list is very useful.



In brief


New RPAH Elimination Diet Handbook available: the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital Allergy Unit in Sydney has produced a new colourful handbook with food and shopping guide that is available to doctors, dietitians and members of the public for $A29.70 (including GST, post and packaging) through http://www.sswahs.nsw.gov.au/rpa/allergy/. It replaces part of the old Simplified Elimination Diet (without challenges) and Salicylates, Amines & Glutamate booklets.


For people with perfume sensitivity: In Canada, Toronto University’s ‘We Share the Air’ awareness campaign provides very useful free posters and brochures:” Scented products release chemicals which can trigger serious health reactions in people with asthma, migraines, allergies or chemical sensitivities – Please avoid the use of perfume, cologne, scented hairspray, and other scented products”. http://www.ehs.utoronto.ca/resources/HSGuide/Scent.htm


Anti-additive movement in the US: Angered by the news that food giant Kraft uses artificial colours in Macaroni and Cheese for US markets but not overseas, mothers in the US have started a petition. See Artificial colors not for some but for US by Mira Dessy.



Readers' stories


The previous reports from Food Intolerance Network members published since February 1999 http://fedup.com.au/success-stories/current-stories . Names have been changed to protect privacy.


Here are just a few of the latest:

[885] One-liners (November 2009)

I have told everyone who listens about the website and book. It has been like a Godsend for me, because it has helped me not only understand the effects of food on my child but also on my husband. He has always been seen as a picky eater but he was actually eating what didn't make him feel ill or affect his moods. I wish more people took the food we eat more seriously, instead of people seeing it as being precious - Suzanne by email.

I used to think that corn chips were good and safe to eat, in the days before I read and understood labels. I could not understand why I was so sick. I found a Doritos Cheese Supreme Corn Chips ingredients list on the internet (http://www.smiths.com.au/) with three flavour enhancers (621, 627, 631) and two artificial colours (129, 110). – Monica by email.

I tried my kids with MacDonalds nuggets and fries and no soft drink to see if it was any better. Well we won’t be doing that again for a long time. I am convinced people who think their kids are OK don't wait long enough for the reaction. – Anne, Qld (Fries contain BHA 320, see ingredients list at http://mcdonalds.com.au/sites/mcdonalds.com.au/files/images/Ingredient%20Listing%20-%20aus-%208%20October%202009.pdf)

We have been failsafe for 18 months and remain grateful for your work, every single day. - Rachael, Vic

Can I just say a big thank you for helping my little girl to be the best version of herself? You have changed our lives. – Rachel, Qld

[884] 160b: Marlene's story: annatto 160b and IBS (November 2009)

First, may I tell you my husband is a retired Allergist and Immunologist and he observed my IBS experiences then elimination of them. For more than 40 years I had diarrhea and severe intestinal pain. The symptoms changed as the years passed. It went from occasional to frequent and from mild to severe. This leads me to believe it is dose and frequency related. The four years prior to my discovery that annatto was the problem for me, it was daily and severe. I would get an excruciating stomach ache with bloating after 20 minutes of ingestion of an annatto product. After another 20 minutes I had an emergency run to the WC and a long bout with painful diarrhea followed by many more trips to the WC. Then, I was enervated and just wanted to do nothing and sometimes for days after. I wasn’t lactose intolerant nor did I have Celiac Sprue (which the doctors considered). In 2005, after a colonoscopy, my GI diagnosed me with IBS. The symptoms continued until 2006, when I was able to pinpoint what caused my IBS symptoms.

On a 37 day trip to Europe, I had no symptoms and was “normal”. I thought about what I was eating in the States and not in Europe. Coffee Mate came to mind. I was asymptomatic the entire trip except for one cup of coffee with a non-dairy product on the plane. Aha! Back in the States, I stayed off Coffee Mate and was fine. 30 days later I tried it and the IBS returned. A few weeks later I ate a scoop of vanilla ice cream; IBS again. What they had in common was annatto, so I researched annatto. There are hundreds of papers on annatto but not one linking annatto to IBS. My husband ordered pure annatto and experimented on me. I got the full-blown IBS when we shared a glass of water with annatto. He didn’t. Annatto predictably results in IBS symptoms of intestinal pain and diarrhea in me. It doesn’t make sense I could be the only one who gets IBS symptoms from Annatto! - Marlene Stein 2009 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

[883] 160b: Another report of annatto and irritable bowel symptoms (November 2009)

[882] 160b: Yet another report of annatto and irritable bowel symptoms (extract from [464])

[881] 160b: Week-long rages from annatto 160b (November 2009)

Our family has been (mostly) failsafe since our older son was diagnosed with autism and multiple food intolerance in 2003.

Last year for some months I was allowing a chocolate coated icecream on a stick containing annatto 160b, once a week I bought a box to share with the kids after shopping.

I had thought it would be ok as our very food sensitive older son didn't react noticeably to the 160b challenge.

Our now 5 year old younger son's behaviour rapidly went downhill until he was a truly horrible little boy, who physically attacked his siblings, flew off the handle at the slightest little thing, roaring and shaking with anger, things were broken in our house including a glass door and a bucket over his brother's head which drew blood! The behaviour followed a pattern each week of a couple of truly horrible days slowly getting less awful over the course of a week. So I had already figured out it was a food eaten once a week, around shopping day, but still hadn't thought of the icecream. Of course as soon as I woke up to it, the icecream was out the door, and our lovely boy and calm home returned. I've since tested annatto 160b a few times both deliberately and accidently and the horrible week long rage returned. Annatto 160b would have to be one of our family's most hated baddies! - Karen, Qld

[880] 160b: Autistic symptoms due to yellow and annatto colorings in the US (November 2009)

[879] Miraculous change in extreme sleeping problems (November 2009) COURAGE AWARD

I was a single mother living alone away from family support, breastfeeding and juggling a wonderful son who at 12 months was barely sleeping 4 hours a day. Most days he looked as if he had drunk a can of "red bull" - eyes rolling, twitching and distant - and sleep only ever seemed to come lightly for short periods once he was beyond exhausted.

He had a rash all over his body that just kept spreading and it made me cry watching him tear at it all day and all night without any relief.

At 12 months I put him into a local day care centre for 2 days a week for some sort of break (sleeping sometimes in the car just around the corner too tired to make it home to sleep after dropping him off). He was a real handful there as he would not settle and ever sleep and would upset all the other babies with his screaming.

I was beside myself by the time I swallowed what pride a new sleepless mum had left and sought every kind of assistance I could - my baby health nurse, my local doctor, and then another doctor all said it was normal (as they all shrugged their shoulders) and the eczema was a lifetime hereditary thing ...

I was even assessed at a local government "sleep clinic" on the gold coast - an awful experience with him not sleeping at all for them and them saying 20 hours without sleep "may be normal for him " - (bugger me !!)

After my lowest darkest point whereby at about 14 months he barely slept in 40 mins increments I was sent to the state children's sleep school in Brisbane. The basic program philosophy is about controlled crying - but that wasn’t his problem …

It was a 5 day hellish event I would wish on no one. He screamed and cried for the first 3 days solid and set new limits in sleep deprivation - made easier the 3rd day only because he totally lost his voice and his screams couldn’t be heard !!! By day 4 he slept (passed out) from sheer exhaustion - so that was apparently a success and I was sent home day 5!!

After only a day or two at home it was obvious there was no improvement.

The next few weeks as I contemplated our future without support, sleep or potential for work as things stood really took its toll, until I was blessed to come across a pharmacist in our local pharmacy. She sat me down and really talked me through the failsafe approach - and really took the time to make it sink in. I was an unwilling participant as when you are so exhausted anything new seems to be insurmountable.

It took 4 days!!! only 4 days !! from having someone waking 8 times a night to 2 times a night!!! from sleeping 4 hours a day to 8 hours - and 10 hours by the end of the week. Once I switched to A2 milk the loop was complete and he started sleeping the night through by the end of week 2. The change was nothing short of miraculous.

For my son to go from the least favourite boy in his kindy to the favourite almost within a week!! It was like someone had handed me a new son.

He became an affectionate loving inquisitive boy that every mum would be so proud of - no tantrums, no fits of rage, renewed energy and able on concentrate on things so much better he simply bloomed, like watching a wilted flower come back to life after rain.

His rash completely healed - completely!! He is now 2.5 years and it has never returned!!

When I tell people about all the positive changes we have had on the diet, they seem to think the diet I fed him before failsafe was really poor. They assume it was full of red cordial, McDonalds, coloured commercial lollies etc but I was aware of colours and MSG and he NEVER had those. At the time I was following the diet recommended by the child care centre. It was the sulphur dioxide in dried fruits, the hidden nitrates in meats, and natural colour 160b I wasn’t aware of, that were our biggest problems, also I was breast feeding at the time and was having more "junk food" and stimulants from comfort eating to keep me functioning so he was getting it that way. I realise my mistake in overdoing a "healthy diet" mostly consisting of a mega high salicylates, high amines and glutamates!! and although I was careful about colours and some preservatives, my son’s biggest and most immediate reactions came from fish/ meats/ and preserved fruits.

Having followed all the information you have put out there in the Failsafe Cookbook my son has thrived!! He has come from behind to be the tallest and fittest in his class. The effect this failsafe lifestyle has had on Patrick has been evident to all who knew him "before diet" as we call it.

I often have people ask me about your work, especially from his childcare centre as they have followed his progress and it’s so rewarding to see the individual but still dramatic change it has on other babies, toddlers and children.

I get angry when I think of the torment and the lost first 12 months of his life - and that a children’s hospital in a week could not assist or pick up what a pharmacist did in seconds - but promise in my own prayers of thanks for you and the pharmacist that I will do my best to help those similar suffering mums that cross my own path. Thank you. - Patrick's proud mum, Qld

[878] Sleeping problems solved - thanks to sleep webinar (November 2009)

[877] 621: Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis – pain free when avoiding MSG (November 2009)

SUCCESS!!! Our 12 year old daughter with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis is pain free!!

We have finished all challenges on the elimination diet and have discovered glutamates - MSG and all 600 numbers to be extremely bad for our daughter with arthritis. Within 8 to 12 hours of having MSG our daughter went from no pain to all the symptoms of arthritis, swollen joints, very sore, trouble walking, and lots of pain. We continued the challenge for 48 hours and by then she had problems with all her joints, soreness, swelling and was absolutely miserable! Within 12 hours of stopping MSG her symptoms settled and she was back to "normal" – no pain! We now totally avoid MSG, all 600 numbers and unspecified 'flavour' listed on any product!

It has been 7 months now since we began the elimination diet and took our daughter off all arthritis medication. She is fantastic! We had a check up with the rheumatologist recently and she was amazed. We don't need to see her for another 6 months and she has classed our daughter as "in remission"!!!! No pain, No symptoms and No medication!

I hope this is of assistance to other sufferers of arthritis! It has made a huge difference to our daughter's life. Thank you for your wonderful information, without this we would be further down the track of a life of pain, misery and medications with nasty side effects for our daughter. To look at our daughter now, you would never know that she suffers from a chronic, debilitating condition, she is full of energy and her love for life is back again! – Sandra, Victoria. (see rest of story)


[876] Our tonsillitis and diet experiment (November 2009)

[875] Onset of depression, aggression and hyperactivity in a 6 yo linked to school canteen food (November 2009)

[874] Sick and tired of asthma – now have so much energy (November 2009)

[873] 635: Flavour enhancers and labile blood pressure (November 2009)

I have been suffering from extremely labile blood pressure since 1995. The worst problem associated with this has been raised BP within an hour or two of going to sleep. I wake feeling unwell, head hurting, cold extremities, always need to urinate, and at times, shivering uncontrollably. I used to suffer from palpitations with it - but in recent times this is rare. I've been investigated for everything possible over the years. I am inclined to eat organic food and always watch the labels on any packaged food.

About 5 weeks ago I decided to join Jenny Craig as I felt I needed to lose up to 10 kilos and have been struggling to get this weight off. In the first week I was appalled to see how many 'numbers' were listed in the food. I could not eat things like their packaged snacks - with colours, flavours etc in them. At this point I consulted with them and asked for the food to be adjusted to suit not eating some of the colours that I know are not good, any sweeteners and Nitrates/Nitrites. This gave me a very limited list - and I could not avoid some Sulphites and Flavour Enhancers. I began to notice 635 coming up in many of the foods - and even most of the dinners.

By about 3 weeks into the food I woke feeling really bad with the old symptoms - including a feeling of pressure in my chest (which had been vaguely there the night before) and blood pressure that measured 217/114. As it did not reduce after a short while of sitting up (my usual method of allowing my bp to lower) I went to the local hospital. They did an ECG and gave me 1/2 Anginine and O2 which eased the symptoms. When the doctor found that my mother had Angina he suggested a Thallium Stress Test. This has been completed and the results are normal.

I have often since 95 suffered from a slight 'pain' in the chest - once definitely after eating a very tasty bowl of Chinese soup. I lived in Singapore for almost 12 years - from 91, but it was not until 95 when I was home for a short while and working on a camp site - eating mass produced food that these symptoms started to occur regularly...hence the visits to many doctors and specialists - always with a negative result for whatever they tested for. Food additives simply did not occur to me.

A few days after my recent visit to hospital, I thought - how dumb can I be?! ... it's the food! I stopped the JC food and within 36 hours began to feel well again. When did they begin to put 635 in food? It keeps being called a 'newer' flavour enhancer and I wonder if it appeared roughly in the mid nineties. I believe it may be a combination of 627 and 631. Some of the JC food has these two listed together and some has 635 listed. Many of the foods also contain the hidden MSGs such as HVP.

I now have a letter from my doctor to say that there is evidence that I am highly sensitive to vaso-active food additives ... and will be given a refund by JC. This has been an 'interesting' exercise that may finally give me the answer to my very labile BP and all the odd symptoms that seem to go with it.– Roslyn by email. (Yes, 635 was approved in the mid-nineties and is a combination of 627 and 631- S)

[872] 635: Increasing episodes of tachycardia, arrythmia and ectopic heart beats (November 2009)

[871] 635: Severe asthma-type reaction to 635 (November 2009)

[870] 635: Ribo Rash in a 7-year-old (November 2009)

[869] Salicylate reactions to Vapouriser and Vicks chest rub (November 2009)

[868] Extreme screaming: from terrible to angel (November 2009)

[867] Another behavioural reaction to McDonald's Soft Serve Cone (November 2009)

[866] From extreme ADHD & mild autism to ‘normal, healthy, well behaved child’ (November 2009)

[865] Severe facial rash due to allergen in supplements (November 2009)

[864] 200: Severe contact dermatitis reaction to sorbates (200-203) (November 2009)

[863] ADHD and diet – surprised by lovely behaviour (November 2009)

[862] Bedwetting and behaviour problems due to Ibilex (Keflex) with artificial colour and flavour (November 2009)

[861] 6yo saved from ADHD medication (November 2009)

[860] Incredible reaction to lip balm (November 2009)

[859] A lifetime of food intolerance (November 2009)

[858] 282: crumpets with 282 changed my sweet two year old into a monster (November 2009)

Don’t forget, you can see all these current stories at http://fedup.com.au/success-stories/current-stories

Product updates


The full list of product updates is available at the Failsafe shopping list http://fedup.com.au/information/shopping-list/blog . Here are recent updates from that list:


Christmas lolly orders: The Little Lolly Shop www.littlelollyshop.com has some new products for a failsafe Christmas and is taking orders: Starpops (plain, no flavour), Starpops (Red Whirlipop recipe, cochineal 1/2 usual amount, natural rosewater which may contain salicylates), Candy Canes (one size only, plain, mild citric, Rosie recipe (beet powder, natural rosewater which may contain salicylates), South Poles (same as above), White Choc Frogs, Soy Carob Buds, Milk Carob Buds, White Buds; and for the extra sensitive Failsafe plain boiled lollies (no citric) and Failsafe plain lollipop (no citric).


Update: Pascall’s White Marshmallows: In supermarkets, Pascall's marshmallows are usually only sold as a packet of vanilla AND raspberry flavoured marshies (not failsafe) or you have to buy the giant vanilla ones. You can buy the packets containing just vanilla marshies (in normal size, not giant) in petrol stations and video stores. - thanks to Lauren


Failsafe sausages NSW are available at AJ Bush & Sons butcher outlets at the following locations: Bankstown, Baulkham Hills, Bondi Junction, Campbelltown, Castle Hill, Dapto, Figtree, Gladesville, Gordon, Hurstville, Miranda, Penrith, Roselands, North Ryde, Rouse Hill, Shellharbour, Wagga Wagga x 2, Warrawong, Wetherill Park and Winston Hills.

All of them will do failsafe sausages to order and some of them may have failsafe sausages in stock: http://www.ajbush.com.au


Naturally Gluten-Free Bread Classic (ingredients: Water, Tapioca, Corn (Non GM), Quinoa (Organic), Yeast, Sea Salt, Guar Gum(412)’ is failsafe as RPA now recommend quinoa (and millet and amaranth) on gluten-free diets. “Corn” appears to be a typo as similar loaves list cornflour. For those with allergies it “may contain traces of sesame”. The best commercial gluten free bread I’ve tasted (other than our own recipe, see below). Definitely needs to be toasted or zapped in the microwave for 20 seconds (the freshening effect will last all day). www.naturallyglutenfree.com.au.


Baker’s Delight pizza bases are not failsafe due to herbs but one failsafer reports “My local store said they would be happy to make some plain ones for me (on order)”. Ingredients are: Wheat flour, Water, Iodised salt, Yeast, Vegetable oil (soya bean), Garlic, Herbs, Emulsifier (481), Flour treatment agents (516, 300), Soy Flour, Enzyme (amylase), Antioxidant (E307), Antifoam (900), Vitamins (thiamine and Folic acid) - thanks to Vera


Silly Yaks gluten free bread and pizza bases www.sillyyak.com.au Ingredients; Rice Flour, potato starch, soy flour, tapioca starch, soy lecithin, canola oil, GDL (575), xanthan gum (415), guar gum (412), salt, water added. The canola oil contains safe antioxidants (vitamin E), the potato starch is sulphite-free, and the tapioca starch contains only residual sulphites (less than 10 ppm). “I don't tolerate any gf breads so I am excited that I can tolerate this one. I am really sensitive to sulphites - I usually get tight chested pretty much straight away but sometimes it can be delayed, where I can wake in the night coughing and then my throat starts to feel like it is closing up - and haven't noticed a problem in that regard. I especially love the pizza bases... they are divine.” Thanks to Teresa


New Products: The Pastry Pantry Gluten-Free Pastries (stocked at Coles) www.thepastrypantry.com.


· Savoury Shortcrust Pastry is failsafe, Ingredients: Gluten-free flour (lentil, rice, amaranth), canola oil, whole egg, starch (maize, tapioca), sugar, vegetable gum (415), water added, raising agent (500)


· Rich Chocolate Pastry (is OK for people who are non amine responders), Ingredients: Gluten-free flour (rice, besan), vegetable fat, whole egg, starch (maize, tapioca), sugar, cocoa, vegetable gum (415), water added, vanilla essence


· Sweet Shortcrust Pastry and Rough Puff Pastry are NOT failsafe due to vegetable fat which is probably copha (coconut fat contains salicylates and amines) but is usually OK if eaten occasionally. - thanks to Anne and Michelle


Feedback about Rice Bran Oil (and bran in general). “I feel that it does make me cranky and give me sore joints. The sore joints are slow onset. We are now switching to Sunshine Canola Oil and I have also stopped having boiled millet and millet flour. It's back to white rice and organic white rice flour. My mood and joints seem a little better” - thanks to John.


Failsafe painkillers: most brands of paracetamol tablets or capsules contain potassium sorbate (preservative 202) and syrups contain artificial colours or flavours. The following brands are free of nasty additives.


· Panadol Mini Caps: consist of 500 mg white preservative-free powder in artificially coloured gelatine capsules. Use the powder and throw away the capsule.

· Herron Capseals: consist of 500 mg white preservative-free powder in artificially coloured gelatine capsules. Use the powder and throw away the capsule.

· Herron Tabsules: white capsule shaped tablet

Extra strong painkillers

· Paracetamol + codeine without sorbates or other additives, Apo-Paracetamol/Codeine 500/30 manufactured by Apotex Ltd (minimise use as codeine is addictive)


For babies & children, ask for our Paracetamol for Babies recipe.

Aspirin it is definitely NOT suitable for people with salicylate sensitivity because aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) is a salicylate challenge! Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Nurofen, Advil and Voltaren should also be avoided, likewise natural herbal pain relievers including lotions.


Worm tablets: there are no fully failsafe medications for worms. However, Combantrin tablets seem to be well tolerated. If worms are suspected, treat the entire family including pets.


For other medications: ask for our Medications Information sheet (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).


***Product Warning*** Ego QV Kids Wash, although described as “colour free” on their website, this product contains tiny beads of 3 colours including Ultramarine Blue (CI 77007) listed as a possible concern regarding neurotoxicity since a 1988 animal study showed brain and nervous system effects at high doses. (http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/ingredient.php?ingred06=706769) One failsafer with sensitive skin really likes it, another has reported the following adverse reactions: “I bought the QV Kids Wash for my girls 5 and 3 and also used it myself and all three of us reacted to it in some way. For the 5 year old who is extremely sensitive to artificial colours she of course reacted behaviourally. I have since bought the QV normal wash and so far haven't noticed any reaction. The only thing I can think of is the tiny little coloured beads in the Kids wash. I was wondering if anyone else may have experienced this”. - thanks to Melanie


***Product Warning***You'll Love Coles Pears in Syrup are NOT failsafe due to concentrated pear juice. According to Coles they need to refer to it as syrup because they have added sugar to thicken the juice.


***Product Warning***Ozefranks “Low-Salicylate Sour Apple Jam” is probably NOT failsafe (According to RPA there are NO low salicyate apples, and cooking certainly doesn’t reduce salicylate content). As with any salicylate containing food, do not expect to see an immediate reaction - you need to keep a food and symptom diary and watch for a very slow build up of symptoms.



Your questions


All questions from Food Intolerance Network members that have been published since September 2002 http://fedup.com.au/information/frequently-asked-questions . Some of the information, particularly that about specific foods and what they contain, may be out of date – always check the Failsafe shopping list.

Q. Does white wine have less salicylates than red wine?


A. See below for the amounts of salicylates in Dr Swain's 1985 Salicylates in Foods research (in mg of salicylate per 100 ml). Note that as well as salicylates, grapes contain amines and glutamates which puts wine in the very high category for troublesome food chemicals, and most wines also contain sulphite preservatives (220 or 223). White wines are generally higher in sulphites than red. As you can see below there are considerable variations - possibly the cheaper wines are slightly lower in salicylates but they are generally much higher in sulphites. Also, salicylate content depends on many changing factors including the climate and variety so these particular brands could be very different by now. According to RPA (Friendly Food p22), people who aren't too sensitive can often tolerate a half glass of wine. They say that high quality wines are less likely to cause reactions, presumably because they are lower in sulphites.



0.10 McWilliams Dry White Wine

0.81 Lindeman's Riesling

0.81 Penfolds Traminer Riesling Bin 202

0.89 Seaview Rhine Riesling

1.02 Yalumba Champagne



0.35 McWilliams Reserve Claret

0.86 McWilliams Cabernet Sauvignon

0.90 McWilliams Private Bin Claret


Q. I am totally confused about formula vs cows milk about whether to continue on formula after 12 months or change to cows milk. Can you offer any insight?


A. Toddler milk formulas for babies over 12 months are just a marketing trick, see http://www.choice.com.au.


Q. I was wondering where on the scale of things oranges and avocado fit? My daughter is an extremely fussy eater and I hate to take away some of the few things she will eat.


A. Oranges and avocados are definitely NOT OK for failsafers because they are very high in both salicylates and amines. If you haven’t seen the RPA’s Friendly Food or Elimination Diet Handbook, ask for our Salicylate Mistakes Information Sheet (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)


Q. I was put onto cholesterol tablets earlier this year. 1st one (Lipistat) gave me twitches and sleeplessness together with aching limbs. 2nd: Lipitor gave me severe muscle soreness. My third try: Cholstat, I had 2 months of terrible trouble sleeping with twitches during the night. Within a few days of starting Ezetrol I was getting aching joints. I have now tried 5 or 6 different cholesterol tablets. Since coming off the tablets I have very few twitches and am sleeping much better. I must admit quality of life is important so if I have to stop taking cholesterol tablets, then so be it. I love my gym work and hate it when I can't go because of muscle problems caused by the medication. Do you have any "natural" remedies for me?


A. Muscle pain and/or weakness can be a severe, disabling, long lasting and even fatal side effect of cholesterol drugs (http://www.statinanswers.com/effects.htm). The best diet in the world for lowering cholesterol is probably the Pritikin program which we tried 20 years ago - before we found failsafe - because of Howard’s family-related high cholesterol level. His cholesterol quickly shot down to a ridiculously low level on the program which avoids added sugar, fat and salt; no fatty foods such as cheese and butter; only skim milk dairy products; only small servings of lean meats; only egg whites; only wholegrains; no processed foods and so on. These days they have relaxed it a bit so you can have a little vegetable oil to saute your foods in and have a few nuts (which suits failsafe - 10 raw cashews per day); I'm not sure about whole eggs.


The London Business Times calls Pritikin ‘arguably the most effective diet, exercise, and lifestyle change program in the world.’ Unfortunately, the Pritikin diet tends to be very high in salicylates. It is more difficult to stick to when you have to avoid most fruit and some vegetables, or have an intolerance to wheat or wholegrains, so we don't follow it strictly all the time, and Howard's cholesterol has gone up a little bit but it is still very, very good. An example of Pritikin-style failsafe meals would be chicken, lamb or lentil soups and stews; stir fries; and other meals with kidney beans or chick peas and failsafe vegies. Although it is difficult to combine Pritikin and failsafe, it is not impossible. For more information, you can borrow Pritikin books from your local library, or see www.Pritikin.com, and see our factsheet Failsafe Weightloss.


Q. I have a 13-month-old who appears to be intolerant to dairy, soy and legumes for certain, and I am questioning eggs and fish. I am also not sure if my drinking wine or coffee affects him. His symptoms were prolific vomiting (which has resolved now) and inconsolable night times where he can cry for over an hour at a time several times a night. He has been known to sleep through the night with one wake for a feed, but then he and I can eat the identical food the next day and have a shocking night. I find the problems with eliminating and reintroducing at this age is knowing if it was the food, a cold, teething etc when they are so little!!! Just when we have a few good nights in a row and I contemplate giving him fish, we have a bad night the night before I want to introduce the food …


A. This email shows just how confusing food intolerance symptoms can be and why the RPA elimination diet is the easiest approach. The mother was extremely reluctant but when she finally tried the elimination diet, her son was sleeping through the night (4 nights in a row) by the end of the third week.


Q. I am new to failsafe and have found our local IGA bake their own bread without preservatives. I was hoping you could tell me if it would be suitable, the ingredients are: flour, salt, soy flour, emulsifiers (481,472e) mineral salt, enzyme (alpha amylase), flour treatment agents (920,223), vitamin (thiamin).


A. All of those ingredients are failsafe except 223 (sodium metabisulphite) which is one of the sulphite preservatives associated with asthma and other food intolerance symptoms. According to RPA most of the sulphites used in bread disappear in the cooking process. However, some extra sensitive people in our network do react to 223 in bread with various symptoms including children with behavioural problems. Bakers Delight, Brumbys and Banjo’s plain breads do not contain any nasty additives.


Q. My doctor wants me on high omega 3 oils, any suggestions?


A: Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are essential to human health but it is best if they are consumed in balance, that is, close to a ratio of 1:1. Instead, Western diets are typically much higher in omega-6s, generally in the range of 10:1 to 30:1. It is thought that traditional subsistence diets were much more in balance. The ratios of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in oils includes:


· cottonseed oil (commonly used in fried takeaways such as fish and chips) 258:1

· sunflower seed oil 156:1 (failsafe)

· palm oil (in many processed foods, often listed as vegetable oil) 46:1

· rice bran oil (OK for failsafers except those affected by whole grains) 35:1

· soy oil 7:1 (failsafe)

· butter 3:1 (failsafe)

· canola oil 2:1 (failsafe except when cold pressed)

· fish oil 1:1 (potentially not failsafe due to possible amines)

· flaxseed oil 1:3 (contains small amounts of salicylates and amines so needs to be approached with caution)


By choosing the right foods you may be able to achieve the correct balance without the need for supplements. The only omega supplement recommended by RPA is flaxseed oil. For more information and failsafe foods that are a good source of Essential Fatty Acids see in our supplements factsheet http://fedup.com.au/factsheets/support-factsheets/supplements-a-vitamins.


Q. The doctor gave my son Nilstat, but it is bright yellow, which puts me off a bit. Is it safe?


A. I did a Google search for Nilstat. The Australian CMI says the colouring agent in Nilstat tablets is Quinoline Yellow CI 47005. That’s artificial colour 104. Yet the Nilstat datasheet in New Zealand lists Opadry Yellow containing Y-2144A (hypromellose, macrogol 400, iron oxide yellow CI 77492, titanium dioxide). Iron oxide is a failsafe colour 172. It seems that Nilstat tablets are failsafe in New Zealand but not Australia.


Q. Today I saw a packet of homestyle jam drops in a fruit shop. The label said "no added artificial colours or flavours". The ingredients list included custard powder, and the ingredients of the custard powder included 102 and 110. The implication of the "no added artificial colours" seem to be that the colours which were already in the custard powder somehow didn't count. I would be very concerned that people would buy them because of the implied no artificial colours claim. I now read the label of every product I buy, but prior to starting the elimination diet, I could have been taken in by such a label. Should I contact the manufacturer to complain, or should it be reported to the relevant authority (whoever that is)?


A. One thing we have learned over the years is NOT to complain to FSANZ. You can complain to the relevant food authority in the State/Territory where the main food factory is located (listed for all states at http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/about/foodenforcementcontacts/pages/default.aspx), but our experience has been that any action or feedback is rare to non-existent. You can try the ACCC: http://www.accc.gov.au. Or you can try to contact the company first, and sometimes they will agree to change it. That happened to me once - no apology, the representative used so much spin you would think she was a leading anti-additive campaigner instead of a health food company using artificial colour 102 listed as "natural colour"! It makes me really mad that it is up to consumers to police labels, and there are no consequences for companies that use misleading labelling unless they refuse to change it. Many thanks for taking the time.



Around the groups: getting in touch


New factsheets Factsheets are becoming our major way of making information available, now in printable format as well as online.


Failsafe birthday parties http://fedup.com.au/factsheets/support-factsheets/failsafe-birthday-parties

249-252 Nitrates, nitrites and nitrosamines http://fedup.com.au/factsheets/additive-and-natural-chemical-factsheets/249-252-nitrates-nitrites-and-nitrosamines


Can you help?


Jackie would like to hear from any failsafers who are on failsafe for LPR (Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (reply via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)




We now have a failsafe contact in China! Beijing, China, Eleanor, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Nearly 1.8 million people have now visited www.fedup.com.au – about 1,000 per day.


See http://fedup.com.au/information/support/contacts for local contacts who can generally answer some questions about failsafe eating - many have brochures and a copy of the DVD to lend out. They can also advise on supportive dietitians locally.


Email support groups: we currently recommend failsafe3 for beginners. It is the smallest of the big general groups. You can join by sending an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with ‘subscribe’ in the subject line.




Coming talks by Sue Dengate - full detail at http://fedup.com.au/information/support/fedup-roadshow-talks


Bellingen NSW Mon 23 November 10.00-12.00am: Sue Dengate chatting with the Bellingen Baby Pre and Post Natal Support Group, CWA Rooms, Bellingen. Enquiries Mieke 02 6655 2992


Coming talks in Melbourne by Kathleen and Jenny of Additive Education http://www.additiveeducation.com.au




NOW AVAILABLE in Dutch, French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Nepali and USA.http://fedup.com.au/information/support/food-intolerance-brochures. Translators for other languages please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Printable trifold brochures on food intolerance and oppositional defiance are available. We'll post two free that you can copy, or you can buy bulk copies at cost $A0.33 each plus postage. See instructions on the website for accessing pdf versions. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with enquiries.




All Failsafe Newsletters from 1998-present http://fedup.com.au/fedup-newsletters. There is a wealth of research, issue discussion, recipes, personal reports and recipes now available in one place. But some of the links are out of date and you must always check current products rather than relying on historical information http://fedup.com.au/information/shopping-list/blog



Cook’s corner


Party hints: – see our new Failsafe Parties factsheet http://fedup.com.au/factsheets/support-factsheets/failsafe-birthday-parties


Hint: for a 'dairy free' yoghurt alternative for little ones add 1/2 teaspoon of guar gum to 1/2 cup of rice milk. My son has never had yoghurt so he doesn't know that his version is any different to his sister’s as it looks the same. I put both of them in the same containers so his doesn't look different. [caution: as with other vegetable gums, guar gum can have a laxative effect in some people] – thanks to Pippa.


Hint: Lunchbox Mini Pies - I have found over last few months of elimination that my girls really dislike failsafe mince if put on top of pasta. However they love it when I make mini pies in a muffin tray .Pastry for bottom, fill with failsafe mince with cabbage in it or sliced beans (if wanting to get more vegies into them) and then top it with mash potato. They love these and take them as leftovers to school (especially on the day the other kids are able to order their lunch). Also the muffin tray size are just right for a child. – thanks to Nic.


Quick Carob Fudge

A nice gift or for a special occasion.


2 cups sugar

1/2 cup milk

1 tbsp golden syrup

1 tbsp carob powder (or unflavoured cocoa if amines ok)

1 tsp butter


Before beginning get everything ready - this is a time sensitive recipe. Grease a cake/loaf tin or small baking tray. Clear the sink and get a hand-beater ready. Mix all ingredients in a medium saucepan and place over a low-medium heat. Stir until boiling. Boil for 6 minutes - keep at a rolling boil, but not boiling over. Take off heat and place saucepan in sink (the lower height helps). Beat until it starts to thicken. This fudge goes from thickening to too far very quickly. The more beating it gets the better it is. Pour or scoop the almost set fudge into the tray. When set, cut into squares. A hot knife helps.

Optional: Push raw cashews into almost set fudge. Use an electric hand mixer to make the process painless - but watch the thickening. - thanks to Melissa L (adapted from a recipezaar posting).


Carob icecream

Simple and yummy:


Mix together 300ml cream, 300ml milk, ¼ cup of carob powder, ½ cup of caster sugar and put in icecream maker - thanks to Rosemaree


Dr Dengate’s UGF (Ultimate Gluten-Free) bread

RPA has recently approved quinoa. For years Howard has worked to get a loaf that is as good as wheat bread: crusty, delicious, doesn’t crumble or stale, toasts well and is nutritious. Here it is – let me know what you think.


2.5 cups quinoa flour (300g)

2/3 cup arrowroot (90g)

2/3 cup cornflour from corn (90g)

1 tbsp sugar

½ tsp salt to taste

3 tsp guar gum

2 tsp dried yeast

2 cups water (500mls)


Mix very well for 3 minutes, using a strong mixer if you have one since the dough is very sticky. Scrape into a well-greased bread tin, smooth top with spatula, cover with a tea towel and allow to rise in a warm place for 1 hour – it should double in volume. Place in preheated oven at 200°C (390°F) for 30-35 minutes (fan forced). Turn out and cover with a tea towel to cool. Makes 870g loaf.


Failsafe Spring Rolls

This mix can be used to make pies as well.


Failsafe Spring Roll Wrappers

300g Minced Beef, Chicken or Lamb (or any combination, pork for non-amine responders)

Any of the following vegetables finely diced: Garlic, celery, beans, leek, spring onions, Brussels sprouts

½ cup cooked rice or rice noodles

If some sals allowed: finely diced carrot, corn kernels, peas, bok choy or other Chinese greens

2 tsp failsafe oil/butter for frying

salt to taste

milk or water for sealing wrappers


2 tsp golden syrup

3-4 tbsp homemade stock

1 tbsp preservative-free cream cheese (adds a lot of flavour to the mix)


Fry meat until browned and vegetables until tender. Add optional ingredients at this point and then salt to taste. Allow mixture to cool. Separate spring roll wrappers into individual sheets. Use 1 or 2

tablespoons of mixture in each spring roll, depending on how large you want them. I place the mixture at the top of the wrapper and then fold the left and right sides into the middle. Moisten all over the wrapper and then roll from the top all the way down. You can then deep or shallow fry in oil or bake in the oven. The amount of each vegetable in the mix will depend on your taste.


I also use this mix to make mini pies but usually add a small amount of sweet potato or butternut pumpkin (if some sals permitted) to help bind the mixture together. Muffin trays make excellent mini pie moulds. Alternatively you could make one large pie.- thanks to Dianne H


The FAILSAFE Newsletter: You can have this Newsletter emailed to you for free about every three months, and also see it in colour with graphics on www.fedup.com.au. Subscribe: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Frontpage: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/failsafe_newsletter

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© Sue Dengate (text) PO Box 718 WOOLGOOLGA NSW 2456, Australia but material can be reproduced with acknowledgement. Thanks to Kathleen, Jenny, Anne, Sheryl, Rosemaree, Leesa, Toni and the many others who have written, phoned and contributed to this newsletter. Further reading: The Simplified Elimination Diet from dietitians, Fed Up and The Failsafe Cookbook by Sue Dengate (Random House Australia), Fed Up with Children’s Behaviour (DVD) by Sue Dengate and Friendly Food, by Swain and others, (Murdoch Books).

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