BRIGHTLY coloured food from restaurants and take-aways could be a result of over-colouring.

This is according to the environmental health chiefs.

Departments in south east London joined together in a co-operative scheme and surveyed 36 establishments, checking specifically on artificial colour levels.

The results showed of the food survey showed the use of colours often exceeded the legal limit. This was especially noticed in food such as tikka masala.

Colourings such as Tartazine (E102), Sunset Yellow (E110) and Ponceau Red R4 (E124) can cause allergic reactions in susceptible people.

Thiss can lead to asthma attacks, head aches and skin rashes.

A leaflet on the safe use of colourings has now been produced.

Interested Greenwich residents who would like a brochure, should call environmental health officer Helen Clark on 020 8921 8181.

Bexley residents should call the Bexley Food Safety team on 020 8303 5140.