ST. LOUIS (KMOX) — While school administrators across the nation try to remove Flamin’ Hot Cheetos from their lunchrooms, emergency room physicians are fighting a different battle.
St. Louis Children’s Hospital pediatrician Dr. Kathleen Berchelmann says Flamin’ Hot Cheetos contain a lot of red food dye and when kids eat large amounts of them, eventually it turns their stool bright red or orange.
Parents, she says, falsely believe they’re seeing blood in the stool and take the kids to the ER to find out nothing is wrong.
“So even though we might eat some foods with red food dye in them regularly, our stool doesn’t usually become discolored unless you eat huge amounts of it,” Berchelmann said. “Flamin’ Hot Cheetos is one food that people will eat enormous amounts of and will see a change in their stool.”
Berchelmann says parents could use this as a teaching moment, talking with their kids about gluttony and eating things in moderation.