for Potential Mechanisms for the Effect of CLA on Tumor Metabolism and
Immune Function: Lessons From N-3 Fatty Acids.
Centre for Functional Foods & Nutraceuticals, University of Manitoba,
Canadian Food and Drugs Act and Regulations, through its definitions of
"food" and "drug", currently restricts health-related
claims for foods, food ingredients and natural health products (NHP).
Over the last few decades, scientific research has lead to a large body
of information demonstrating the benefits for health of many food and
NHP ingredients. Health Canada has recognized the constraints of the current
regulatory environment and has begun to develop regulations related to
the allowance of health claims for functional foods and NHP.
Health Canada has three initiatives underway in the area of health claims
for foods: 1) to adopt US generic health claims within a Canadian context;
2) to develop scientific standards of evidence and a guidance document
for supporting the validity of product-specific claims; and 3) to develop
an overall regulatory framework for functional foods. In 2000, Health
Canada announced approval for the use of five generic diet related health
claims: sodium and hypertension; calcium and osteoporosis; saturated and
trans fat and cholesterol and coronary heart disease; fruits and vegetables
and cancer; and sugar alcohols and dental caries. Under a separate initiative,
the Natural Health Products Directorate was established in March 1999
to regulate NHPs including requirements for product labeling, product
quality and health claims. The potential significance to the industry
of these legislative initiatives will be described.
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