Information Update - Richmond, B.C. Store (Cube Inc.) Selling Potentially Dangerous Weight Loss Products

Nov 30, 2012, 15:30 ET from Health Canada

OTTAWA, Nov. 30, 2012 /CNW/ - Further to our previous communications, Health Canada is advising Canadians that three unauthorized products promoted for weight loss have been seized from "Cube Inc.", a box-store store in Richmond, B.C.

These products contain hidden drug ingredients (sibutramine and phenolphthalein) that may pose serious health risks. Caffeine was also found in two products and was not listed on the product label. Caffeine may pose health risks to people sensitive to its effects.

Consumers should consult their health care practitioner if they have used or are using "Goya Bittermelon", "S-organic Cocoa+L-carnitine", or "KaBaNa L-Carnitine 360 Slimming Coffee," and should report any adverse reactions to Health Canada.

When new weight loss products containing sibutramine or additional hidden ingredients are identified, Health Canada will add them to its list of affected products. Canadians are advised to monitor this list for updates.

Sibutramine was previously used to treat obesity but is no longer authorized for sale in Canada because of its association with an increased risk of cardiovascular side-effects such as heart attack and stroke.

Phenolphthalein, which was previously used as a laxative, is no longer authorized for sale in Canada because it may cause cancer. Additional side-effects associated with phenolphthalein include decreased blood pressure, skin rash and gastrointestinal bleeding.

Health Canada would like to remind Canadian retailers that the sale of health products is governed by the Food and Drugs Act and its Regulations, and that selling unauthorized products is against the law. Retailers found selling unapproved products may have them seized by Health Canada or by various law enforcement authorities.

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SOURCE Health Canada