On July 23, the American Academy of Pediatrics warned, in a formal policy statement, that many common food additives, which have not been adequately tested for their effects on children, could have disastrous effects on children's health. The group, which is the largest pediatricians' organization in the US, called for a major overhaul in the way the federal government regulates these chemicals. The statement pointed specifically to such additives as BPA, phthalates, perfluoroalkyl chemicals, nitrates and artificial food colorings – all chemicals, the group said, which can disturb the endocrine system, the network of glands that release hormones responsible for regulating everything from childhood development and growth to metabolism and sleep cycle. Many of these chemicals are permitted in the food supply because they have been approved as "generally recognized as safe" or GRAS, but, the pediatricians said, this categorization was not intended to be used for substances with such possible wide-ranging effects.