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Check My Body Health found Cadbury Mini Eggs contained the highest – with seven E numbers.
Mini Eggs were closely followed by Cadbury Oreo Chocolate Egg and Smarties Milk Chocolate Mini Eggs in joint second with five E numbers each.
According to the NHS, all food additives, including artificial colourings, preservatives and emulsifiers, have an ‘E number’.
This means they have passed safety tests and are approved for use in the EU.
However E numbers can cause hyperactivity in children.
The top five Easter treats containing the most E numbers according to Check My Body Health:
- Cadbury Mini Eggs – seven E numbers
- Cadbury Oreo Chocolate Egg – five E numbers
- Smarties Milk Chocolate Mini Eggs – five E numbers
- Malteaster Bunny Milk Chocolate Bar – four E numbers
- Terry’s Chocolate Orange Mini Eggs – four E numbers
According to the British Heart Foundation we are a nation of chocolate lovers with more than two-fifths of Brits confessing to being chocoholics.
Check My Body Health also analysed 80 of the UK’s most popular chocolate products to reveal which products contain the most E numbers.
Revels were the top offender with 12 E numbers which may be due to the variety of flavoured and coloured centres in their chocolates.
M&Ms and Cadbury Heroes came joint second, with ten E numbers each.
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Cadbury Roses were third containing nine E numbers.
Non-seasonal treats with the most E numbers according to Check My Body Health:
- Revels – 12 E numbers
- M&Ms (Peanut) – 10 E Numbers
- Cadbury Heroes – 10 E Numbers
- Cadbury Roses – 9 E numbers
- Cadbury Boost – 8 E numbers
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Of the 80 chocolate products analysed 24 contained just one E number including Ferrero Rocher and Galaxy Caramel.
Surprisingly, Smarties don’t include any E numbers despite the range of colours used in their sugar coatings.
Sian Baker from Check My Body Health said: “From a young age many of us are taught that E numbers are bad, and we should avoid consuming them where possible, so it’s encouraging to see that many brands are working to ensure they aren’t including them in their products.
“However, from the results of the analysis, we can see that the products that do have high E number levels are those with flavourings and textures that go beyond that of plain chocolate, such as flavoured and coloured centres or caramel fillings.
“Although E numbers are a great indicator of the additives used in a product, it’s a good idea to combine this with looking at the length of the ingredients list to assess how unhealthy a product may be, although frequently lots of E numbers and long ingredients lists and high levels of processing go hand in hand.
“We all love a chocolate treat every now and again, which isn’t a problem at all, but chocolate often forms too large a part of a diet, or is just part of the picture in a whole diet that is lacking in quality nutrition.
“By learning more about the contents and processing of our foods, it enables us to make more informed decisions on what we eat and take greater responsibility for our health.”
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