According to Health Canada, over a dozen health products that were labelled to help with sexual enhancement, weight loss, as a workout aid, as "poppers", or for lightening skin or treating skin conditions (such as eczema or psoriasis) have been seized from shelves in Cochrane and Calgary.
Reflex Supplements in Cochrane had over a dozen supplements seized from its store location, while Wah Loong Chinese Herbs Ltd and Wah Hing Chinese Ginseng Center, both located in Calgary had two products seized.
Several of the products in the Cochrane location contained yohimbine is a prescription drug, which can cause serious adverse reactions, especially in individuals who have high blood pressure, or heart, kidney or liver disease.
"Side effects include increased blood pressure and heart rate, anxiety, dizziness, tremors, headache, nausea and sleep disorders. It should not be used by children or pregnant or nursing women."
Other products included ingredients such as cardarine, which is not authorized in Canada for any use, as well as Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators (SARMs). The use of bodybuilding products that contain SARMs can pose serious health risks such as heart attack, stroke and liver damage.
"All clinical development activities to bring cardarine to market were stopped when toxicities, including various cancers, were discovered following routine, long-term animal studies."
The products in Calgary contained ingredients such as dexamethasone and tadalafil. Systemic side effects of using dexamethasone could include high blood pressure, high blood sugar, blurred vision, uneven heartbeats, weakness, and swelling. Dexamethasone is generally not recommended for use during pregnancy. Although Tadalafil is a prescription drug used to treat erectile dysfunction, individuals taking any kind of nitrate drug should not use it as it can cause potentially life-threatening low blood pressure.
"Other possible side effects include headache, facial flushing, indigestion, dizziness, abnormal vision, and hearing loss."
Unauthorized health products are products that have not been approved by Health Canada and can contain ingredients not listed on the label.
"This includes ingredients like prescription drugs, possibly at doses exceeding maximum recommended amounts. Using a product that contains ingredients that the consumer is not aware of increases the chance of dangerous allergies and interactions with other medications and foods."
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