There are thousands of natural health products on the market in Canada; everything from vitamin and mineral supplements, to herbal remedies. But who’s regulating them? Distributed by Tubemogul.
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Male Speaker: There are thousands of natural health products on the market in Canada everything from vitamin and mineral supplements to herbal remedies. Do you ever wonder whether anyone is checking the safety of these products? Michelle Boudreau: Natural health products sold in Canada are regulated by the Natural Health Product Regulations. The regulations provide assurances to consumer is that what is on the label is in the bottle. So it's important to look at the label and to look for the natural product number or the homeopathic medicine number. That's an eight digit number that indicates to consumers that the product has been reviewed and assessed for safety and health claim by Health Canada. So again the label is a very important part of the bottle and it's important to read it. It contains information such as a complete list of medicinal ingredients and non medicinal ingredients, the dosage, how to take the product and any kinds of warnings or risk statements. For example, if the product happens to help interactions with prescription drugs its important to know that and that will be on the label. And similarly the product may be something that's not recommended for people who have certain conditions like diabetes. Male Speaker: What about the claims on the label how to do you know if the product works? Julia Fogg: Here at the Natural Health Product Directorate, we review products for three things safety, efficacy, and quality. We do this by looking at information provided to us by the manufacturers. Depending on the type of product we are assessing, the health claim authorized by Health Canada is based on the fruititional use of the product, published studies, established product standards and small scale patient trials. It is important to note that there is a difference between a well known product that has been used safely for generations and a new formulation or a new proposed use for product. Michelle Boudreau: So from the consumer's perspective it's really important to look at the label if there is no number on the label it means that Health Canada has not reviewed that product for safety and efficacy. So look for the NPN or the DNHM on the label. Male Speaker: More natural health products are being licensed by Health Canada everyday. So far over 20,000 products have been licensed remember you have to read the label.

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