Health Canada warns about supplements
Canada’s health watchdog is warning about several dietary supplements that could be harmful to consumers.
Comecoo contains undeclared phenolphthalein and subutramine which could cause health problems in consumers.Comecoo contains undeclared phenolphthalein and subutramine which could cause health problems in consumers. (Health Canada)Three are weight loss products manufactured in Hong Kong. The other is an American supplement called Vita Breath.
The Food and Drug Administration in the U.S. first issued warnings about Vita Breath in early May after levels of lead 10,000 times higher than maximum recommended levels were found in the product.
Manufactured by American Herbal Labs of California, Vita Breath is promoted for improving the health of people with asthma, and to support healthy lung energy.
Health Canada notes children are most vulnerable to excessive lead. Side effects include kidney and brain damage, weight loss, insomnia, dizziness, weakness and reproductive disorders such as miscarriage.
Vita Breath has been sold at health fairs and over the internet. Anyone who has purchased the product is advised to get rid of it.
Hong Kong weight loss products
Qingzhi Santian Shou contains sibutramine, a prescription obesity drug and should only be used under a doctor’s supervision.Qingzhi Santian Shou contains sibutramine, a prescription obesity drug and should only be used under a doctor’s supervision. (Health Canada)Health Canada says Comecoo, Zhongcaoyao and Qingzhi Santain Shou are weight loss products which contain sibutramine, which is a prescription drug in Canada, sold under the name Meridia.
According to the agency’s advisory sibutramine should only be taken under the supervision of a health care professional. It can cause increased blood pressure and heart rate, dry mouth, difficulty sleeping and constipation.
In addition to sibutramine Comecoo and Zhongcaoyao also contain phenolphthalein, a laxative that is banned from sale in Canada over concerns that it can cause cancer.
Side-effects associated with phenolphthalein include decreased blood pressure, skin rash and gastrointestinal bleeding.