organizing committee  

Evidence for Potential Mechanisms for the Effect of CLA on Tumor Metabolism and Immune Function: Lessons From N-3 Fatty Acids.
K.C. Fitzpatrick
Richardson Centre for Functional Foods & Nutraceuticals, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg

The 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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