CANADIAN MEDICAL JOURNAL OPINION PIECE TAKES AIM AT NATUROPATHIC PRODUCTS

Jun 26, 2017

By Jane Brown

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There’s a call for the federal government to crack down on natural health products. The author of an editorial in today’s Canadian Medical Association Journal argues that natural health products are poorly tested and can do patients more harm than good, compared with conventional medicines

Medicinal herbs

Doctor Matthew Stanbrook says “they simply have to show that someone, somewhere once used this as therapy for something.”

The editorial urges Health Canada to stop makers of naturopathic products from claiming that the products are remedies, because they are not as rigorously tested as conventional, over the counter drugs.

Supporters of alternative medicines are disputing the editorial’s claims. Shawn O’Reilly is the executive director of the Canadian Association of Naturopathic Doctors. She says the editorial does not accurately reflect the standards that natural health products must meet before they can be sold to the public, which she calls robust.

Health Canada is currently reviewing the regulations that govern the sale of self care products including naturopathic remedies.

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