Supplements vs. supplemented foods: Are they one and the same?

by | May 30, 2024 | Food and Recipes

You’ll find a lot of advice online about supplements. But have you heard of supplemented foods? Some supplements and supplemented foods can contain the same ingredients and therefore, should not be consumed together.

Supplemented foods are packaged foods or drinks with one or more supplemental ingredients added to them, such as caffeine, minerals like calcium, vitamins like vitamin C and amino acids like L-leucine. Some of these products carry cautions about consuming supplements and supplemented foods together.

To help you find these cautions easily, Health Canada introduced new regulations that require updated labels for supplemented foods. As of January 1st, 2026, all supplemented foods will be required to have these new labels, but you might start seeing them sooner.

Supplemented foods with cautions will carry an identifier with an exclamation mark and the words “Supplemented” and “Health Canada” on the front of the label, alerting you to read cautions written on the back or side of the product. An example of a caution is: “Do not eat or drink on the same day as any other supplemented foods or supplements with the same supplemental ingredients.”

All supplemented foods will have a supplemented food facts table instead of a nutrition facts table. It includes the same nutrient information, with the addition of a “Supplemented with” section listing the type and amount of each supplemental ingredient.

Learn more about supplemented foods and their labels at canada.ca/supplemented-foods

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