Health Canada's healthy eating strategy
Learn how we're working to make the healthier choice the easier choice for Canadians.
We're taking a new approach to healthy eating. Our strategy aims to improve the food environment in Canada to make it easier for Canadians to make the healthier choice. We're:
- improving healthy eating information
- protecting vulnerable populations
- strengthening labelling and claims
- improving nutrition quality standards
- supporting increased access to and availability of nutritious foods
Improving healthy eating information
Health Canada is revising Canada's food guide. We have been consulting with interested parties and the public to make sure that new guidance and resources are relevant and useful.
Protecting vulnerable populations
Most foods advertised are high in:
Children's eating habits are influenced by marketing. To protect children, we're working to restrict marketing of unhealthy foods and beverages.
Strengthening labelling and claims
At the end of 2016, we updated regulations about food labels and their:
These changes will make it easier to compare similar products to make healthier choices.
To help you make healthier food choices, we consulted with Canadians on front-of-package nutrition information. Your input about this will help us find the best way to help you make informed decisions, on:
- saturated fat
Improving nutrition quality standards
Some Canadians are still eating too much trans fats. We've introduced regulations banning industrially produced trans fat in foods by fall 2018.
Many processed foods are high in sodium. We continue to work with food producers to reduce sodium in packaged foods.
We're also working with restaurants and food services to develop goals for reducing sodium in their foods.
Supporting increased access to and availability of nutritious foods
The Nutrition North Canada program is one way in which Canada supports increased access and availability to nutritious foods. The program provides a retail subsidy through Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. This helps make perishable nutritious foods more accessible and affordable to residents of isolated northern communities.
Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada also provide funding to eligible communities to deliver nutrition education activities to:
- increase healthy eating knowledge
- develop skills in selecting and preparing nutritious foods
Effective October 1, 2016, the Nutrition North Canada program has been expanded to an additional 37 isolated northern communities. This change will help more families living in isolated northern communities to access affordable and healthy foods.
To keep improving the program and ensure it's sustainable, we're engaging:
- Indigenous partners
- retailers and suppliers
- provincial and territorial governments
- other stakeholders
We need to work together to improve healthy eating across Canada. Please sign up to our Consultation and Stakeholder Information Management System (CSIMS) to stay engaged with:
- policy documents
Formal written responses to consultations will be summed up in reports that will be publicly available. Individual responses may be released by request under the Access to Information Act.
All other healthy eating correspondence and meetings with stakeholders will be published monthly online in list form.
This includes correspondence and meetings in which opinions and information (including requests for information) are relayed with the intent to inform the development of:
The published list includes the:
- organization name
- purpose of the meeting
The title of any documents supplied during meetings will also be published.
During the policy development of the new Canada's Food Guide, officials from Health Canada's Office of Nutrition Policy and Promotion will not be meeting with representatives from the food and beverage industry.
If you want to know more about our healthy eating strategy, contact us by email.
- Call for Information on Sodium Reduction Initiatives in the Canadian Foodservices Sector [2017-09-20]
- Consultation on the revision of Canada's Food Guide (Phase 2) [2017-06-10]
- Consultation on restricting unhealthy food and beverage marketing to children [2017-06-10]
- Notice of Proposal: Prohibiting the Use of Partially Hydrogenated Oils (PHOs) in Foods [2017-04-07]
- Consultation on banning partially hydrogenated oils in foods [2016-11-14]
- Consultation on front-of-package nutrition labelling [2016-11-14]
Reports and publications
- Consultation Report: Restricting Marketing of Unhealthy Food and Beverages to Children in Canada [2017-12-08]
- Front-of-Package Nutrition Labelling: September 18 Stakeholder Engagement Meeting [2017-11-02]
- Healthy eating strategy [2016-10-24]
- Healthy Eating Strategy: Questions and answers
- Food labelling changes
- Revision process for Canada's food guide
- Nutrition North Canada
- Transparency of stakeholder communications for healthy eating initiatives
- Notice of Modification: Prohibiting the Use of Partially Hydrogenated Oils (PHOs) in Foods [2017-09-15]
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