Red Dye 40…fact or fiction?

Brighton is on a kick lately of wanting his “juice” with supper instead of his regular whole milk. So being the complete pushover I am, I gave in and gave him the “juice.” I should clarify, bu “Juice” he means sugar free crystal light drinks that we dilute about 3:1 3 parts water to 1 part prepared crystal light. About 30 minutes after his supper I noticed something rather odd…Brighton looked like and acted like he had swallowed two fist-fulls of coffee beans…running around the ottoman in circles and giggling, knocking everything off the coffee table, climbing up and off my lap about 4 dozen times… “OK, he’s just overtired” I tell myself. “Let him wear himself out!”

A few yawns later, from him and I, I figured it was time to start to relax and head off to bed. We started out in his bedroom where he first thought maybe he’d take out a bear or two to sleep with. Then he thought it would be a grand idea to get up in his rocking chair. After two seconds of that, down he went from the chair and that’s when he thought he needed his baseball. Then he made a few laps around his hamper, baseball in hand then a few without. “What the heck is going on?!” I’m thinking to myself, “I had a latte tonight, but it was decaf…” I watched in horror, my mind racing as to how I was going to get this little tennis ball with legs off to bed! “TYLENOL!” Brighton gladly took his “medicine” but it didn’t slow him down any…at least not yet. (oh don’t get your panties in a wad, he is teething and I don’t give my son drugs too appease my sleeping habits! – just his). This clearly wasn’t working. He was not ready for “nite nite”.

I thought maybe it was a good idea to take him into our bedroom for a while to lay with mommy and maybe read a book or two or watch the tele and relax. Yeah well, that’s where the fun began. Out of nowhere, he started running (well, a toddler version of running anyway), throwing himself on the floor and laughing hysterically at and to himself. Up on the bed, under the covers to play “peek!” with Feebee, tickling Feebee, then down on the floor again running around the bed. I admit, at this point, it was kind of fun watching him have such a good time and his giggle is infectious. So I participate for a little while and we both hide from and peek!Feebee (who wasn’t amused). I watch him hoping against all hope that the Tylenol will kick in soon. Finally, he looks into the mirror and I catch him rubbing his eyes. “AHA! That’s my cue.” I scoop him up and take him into his room where he immediately exclaims “STARS!” “Yeah stars,” I say, “it’s time for sleepy…FEEBEE!” (Feebee always sleeps in the rocking chair beside him at night).

After a little “milkie” and a little rocking, he’s finally drifting off. Which brings me here…and to the title of this post. While I was watching him bounce like a drunken tigger all around the bedroom it occurred to me…Red 40 was in the cranberry “juice!!” Somehow I recall someone somewhere saying something about red dye 40 making kids hyper…or was it yellow 50? I don’t know…I looked it up online like every good parent does, and found nothing except this, which is kind of gross (click on This) but I don’t think it has anything to do with the chemical red 40 that is supposed to make kids hyper. At any rate, that is one possible explanation of the tiggeresque activity going on in my house this evening…So if you know, would you please either email me or leave me a comment? I’d be really interested. But he is in bed, so I won’t hold Red 40 in contempt just yet…but he’s surely not getting anymore red “juice!”

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