health MATTERS – Generic vs Brand name?

brand1 DO YOU EVER WONDER if a generic drug has the same effectiveness over a brand name when you’re trying to make a decision at the drugstore?  The ingredients listed are exactly alike but the price difference is usually much less.  If they’re both therapeutically equivalent, what gives?brand2

In Canada, generic drugs must meet the same high standards and purity as brand name drugs.  They are “bioequivalent,” a term that means that the same drug gets into the body and works the same way as the brand name drug.  So, before a generic drug can be sold, its manufacturer must prove to Health Canada that it is as effective as the brand name.  The generic manufacturer must also prove that the active ingredient dissolves at the same rate, is absorbed the same way, and is as pure as the brand name product. This has helped me when choosing allergy pills.  I now buy a generic bottle that works equally as good as a well known brand with the same ingredients for considerably less money.  Same goes for aspirin. Turns out that 40 to 60% of prescriptions in Canada are filled with a generic drug. Can you blame us?

BRAND1 (2) A generic brand may look or taste slightly different from the brand name.  While they have the same active ingredients, they may have different inactive ingredients such as flavours, colours, and fillers.  Their manufacturers must prove that any differences in inactive ingredients don’t affect the product’s quality, safety or effectiveness.

Why does the generic drug have a different name:

Each drug has a specific active ingredient that makes it work. The active ingredient is referred to by the generic name.  The generic name stays the same no matter which company makes the drug.  The brand name is the name that a specific manufacturer gives to the product, and it can be used only by that manufacturer.  When a brand name drug is no longer covered by patent protection, a generic manufacturer can make a generic alternative, but it can’t use the same brand name – it must choose a new brand name for its generic drug.  This is the name that will appear on the generic label.

When filling your prescription, ask your pharmacist if there’s a generic alternative to your medication.  You may find that you’re already receiving a generic drug and saving on the cost.  Ask questions – this is one prescription for happiness.

Taken from: The Wellness Connection


B Well – Saving Face!

THE TRUTH ABOUT SPF & UVA/B. Healthy Skin Care - Copy   sun2 Listen up, ski bunnies! 

You may not think you have to worry about wearing sunscreen in the winter, but the most damaging rays are still wreaking havoc on your face.  Save your skin with both UVA and UVB protection.  The latest scoop on keeping your skin happy, healthy and younger looking all year long.

When the FDA recently announced it was updating labelling guidelines for sun-protection products, beauty companies noticed.  What’s new?  The buzz is all about UVA – which has been proven to cause the most long-lasting damage to skin health.  Research shows that these rays are the real culprits behind premature wrinkles, dark spots, uneven complexion, inflammation, sagging – even skin cancer.sun1

Right now most products focus on SPF, or Sun Protection Factor as most of you know by now.  But we’re learning SPF measures only UVB levels (the rays that cause sunburn).  So if you’re concerned with aging (and really, who isn’t?), you need to tune in to UVB and UVA protection.  The problem is even if you use broad-spectrum sunscreen, which claims to protect against UVB and UVA, there’s no way of knowing just how much UVA you’re getting because standard guidelines don’t exist in North America.

Enter the FDA’s new labelling regulation, which proposes that suncare products list the UVA protection right on the bottle.  You may already be familiar with this practice if you’ve been shopping in a Paris or Tokyo drugstore, where sunscreen bottles feature one important extra symbol: PA+, PA++ or PA+++.  Also, in the U.K., they’ve embraced the Boots five-star rating

Now Health Canada is re-evaluating its labelling requirements too, and expects to establish its own guidelines for UVA protection soon.  .  Until then, look for products that have science behind them like the following:

La Roche Posay I personally recommend & use: La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL 50+ tinted extreme fluid.  It’s feels weightless, does the trick and gives a nice sheer tint.

neutrogenaAlso good & less expensive is Neutrogena age shield repair sunscreen with SPF 55.  It goes on light but doesn’t feel sticky or make your face look white.

Clinique broad spectrum moisture surge and Biotherm Skin-Vivo both with SPF 15 were also recommended by Chatelaine Magazine.

**Don’t miss listening to “Transforming Health” with host Brad King for the most up-to-the-minute interviews with leading health experts – Live every Wednesday @ 12PM-PST/3PM-EST on – #1 internet radio station in North America. Here’s the link: