I've done some research and believe this to be the most healthy way to prepare the solution. Never use sugar substitute, brown sugar, honey or organic sugar. Some experts believe red food coloring can be harmful to hummingbirds. Since most hummingbird feeders are red or have some red on them, it is not necessary to add food coloring. *Tip - When first attracting hummingbirds, tie a red ribbon on the bottom of your feeder.