Essiac Tea - the story, health benefits and other information

by Webmaster,

Essiac Tea is today probably the most famous and commonly used herbal tea for cancer.

Essiac's early origins

Essiac's discovery and eventual proliferation is one more of accident than design. In 1922, a Canadian nurse by the name of Rene Caisse attended to an older woman and realized that there was scarring on the woman's breast. Upon Caisse's enquiry, the woman explained that she had gotten breast cancer some 30 years earlier, and the cancer had been cured by a herbal formula that was given to her by an old Indian medicine man. She recovered and never suffered any recurrence thereafter.

Caisse obtained the formula from the woman, with the intention of using it for herself should she ever develop cancer. She, however, subsequently used the formula to treat, mostly successfully, thousands of cancer patients. 'Essiac' is actually 'Caisse' spelt backwards.

Caisse faced much resistance, and even persecution, from the authorities in her use of Essiac Tea. The cancer industry is fraught with such unfortunate stories - there have practically not been any successful alternative therapies for cancer in the last hundred years or so which has not been discredited, harried, threatened, silenced and persecuted by the mainstream authorities. It is truly disconcerting that profits continue to take precedence over human life and dignity.

The health benefits of Essiac - how does Essiac work?

A wide range of health benefits, including improved immunity, better elimination, increased appetite, and a better sense of overall health and wellbeing, among others, have been reported with the use of Essiac.

Many have recovered from diabetes or been weaned off insulin after the regular consumption of Essiac. This is because Essiac stimulates the pancreas to function properly again.

While some of Essiac's ingredients have been shown to have anti-cancer effects, its main therapeutic properties stem from the fact that it is an excellent detoxifier of the body, including the intestines, blood and liver, thus allowing the body's immune system to restore it to a state of health. This mode of action is similar to many powerful natural herbal remedies.

Essiac testimonials - affirmation of its effectiveness

I am not aware of any recent clinical trials or studies on Essiac which prove its effectiveness against disease, in particular cancer. However, the number of testimonies of amazing recoveries over the decades is truly enormous.

The most creditable source of affirmation among all the Essiac Tea testimonials perhaps comes from Dr Charles A. Brusch, personal physician of the late President John F. Kennedy. He had written and signed a letter dated 6 April 1990 to attest the successful use of Essiac. This letter is produced by some Essiac manufacturers as proof of the tea's effectiveness.

To quote part of the letter, "I personally monitored the use of this old therapy along with Rene Caisse, R.N., whose many successes were widely reported. Rene worked with me at my medical clinic in Cambridge, Massachusetts and where, under the supervision of 18 of my many medical doctors on staff, she proceeded with a series of treatments on terminal cancer patients and laboratory mice and together we refined and perfected her formula."

"On mice it has been shown to cause a decided recession of the mass and a definite change in cell formation."

"Clinically, on patients suffering from pathologically proven cancer, it reduces pain and causes a recession in the growth. Patients gained weight and showed a great improvement in their general health. Their elimination improved considerably and their appetite became whetted."

"Remarkable beneficial results were obtained even on those cases at the 'end of the road' where it proved to prolong life and the 'quality' of that life."

"In some cases, if the tumor didn't disappear, it could be surgically removed after ESSIAC with less risk of metastases resulting in new outbreaks."

"Hemorrhage has been rapidly brought under control in many difficult cases, open lesions of hip and breast responded to treatment, and patients with cancer of the stomach have returned to normal activity among many other remembered cases. Also, intestinal burns from radiation were healed and damage replaced, and it was found to greatly improve whatever the condition."

"All theses patients' cases were diagnosed by reputable physicians and surgeons."

"I do know that I have witnessed in my clinic and know of many other cases where ESSIAC was the therapy used, a treatment which brings about restoration through destroying the tumor tissue and improving the mental outlook which re-establishes physiological function."

"I endorse this therapy even today for I have in fact cured my own cancer, the original site of which was the lower bowel, through ESSIAC alone."

"In my last complete examination, where I was examined throughout the intestinal tract while hospitalized (August, 1989) for a hernia problem, no sign of malignancy was found. Medical documents validate this."

"I have taken ESSIAC every day since my diagnosis (1984) and my recent examination has given me a clear bill of health."

In search of the true Essiac Tea recipe

Essiac has often been marketed as a Ojibwa Indian formula. However, this point is very hazy as several of its ingredients are in fact not native to North America. It seems that turkey rhubarb came from China, while burdock and sheep sorrel were apparently brought over from Europe by earlier settlers. Slippery elm is the only main Essiac herb believed to be native to North America.

Rene Caisse never released the Essiac formula publicly, and it's believed that she kept it a secret because she felt it would be abused - people would not prepare the tea properly, or the authorities would try to destroy its credibility, or opportunists would exploit the formula for money. These fears seem to have materialized, especially the third one.

Along Essiac's history, many parties have come into the picture. For someone who is looking for a supply of Essiac Tea, it can be a really daunting task to choose a reliable source of effective tea.

Firstly, there are just so many suppliers out there, with many claiming to hold the 'real' or 'original' or 'authentic' formula, or claiming to sell the most effective herbs. To make things more uncertain, there is one big controversy - the actual ingredients of the Essiac herbal tea!

Perhaps the two most popular versions out there are a 4-herb version, containing the herbs mentioned above, and an 8-herb version, with blessed thistle, kelp, red clover and watercress as the additional ingredients. But there also exist 8-herb versions with slightly different ingredients, and apparently even 6-herb versions.

The following is an Essiac Tea recipe for a particular 4-herb version:

    Burdock Root (cut up) - 6.5 cups (52 measuring cup ounces)
    Sheep Sorrel (powdered) - 16 ounces or 1 pound
    Slippery Elm Bark (powdered) - 4 ounces
    Turkey Rhubarb Root (powdered) - 1 ounce

Click here for more information on Essiac Tea Recipes.

Proper preparation and usage of the Essiac formula

Another point of debate is whether or not Caisse actually injected certain ingredients of the Essiac formula into her patients, instead of solely using oral application, as is mostly the case today.

One key thing to note is that Essiac is a decoction i.e. plant parts like roots, seeds or bark are boiled for ten minutes and then allowed to steep for some hours, usually overnight. An infusion, on the other hand, is when one submerges a tea bag in a cup of hot water - this process usually extracts vitamins and volatile oils.

There are other forms of Essiac on the market today, for example concentrated liquid extracts, capsules, tea bags and tinctures (i.e. herbal extracts stored in alcohol, in small dark glass bottles with a dropper). The therapeutic effectiveness of these versions are uncertain.

Most people agree that the decoction is the most effective. Thus, if you would like to maximize Essiac's effectiveness, I would suggest you purchase the dry herb version and prepare the tea yourself.

The effectiveness of various sources of Essiac

Many people who have comprehensively researched natural and alternative treatments for cancer, as well as many who are themselves battling cancer, agree that Essiac Tea is very useful in helping the cause - in terms of detoxifying and strengthening the body. There seems to be at least some people helped by each of the various forms of Essiac available on the market today. Of course, the degree of effectiveness would vary.

However, most also agree that Essiac would not be strong enough to be used as a standalone treatment, and should be used to supplement other protocols. This is especially the case given the fact our diet, lifestyle and living environment today is much more toxic than it was in Caisse's time. Having said that, there are still some people today who say they have fully recovered from cancer using Essiac alone.

While I personally don't at all recommend conventional chemotherapy and radiation treatment for cancer, there are also many who have used Essiac in conjunction with these methods, to good effect.

Essiac side effects

Thus far, I am not aware of any significant side effects with using Essiac, except for detoxification and healing reactions, such as headaches, intestinal discomfort or perhaps a little nausea. These symptoms usually pass as the body cleans itself up.

Importance of quality herbs

As with all food, herbs and supplements, the integrity of the company in question and the quality of the ingredients used are of foremost importance - this is perhaps especially true for Essiac Tea. Just as I discuss how I seek out quality natural supplements , I again feel that the best way of finding the most effective Essiac for yourself, is to first find out about the experiences of others, and then finally to try it for yourself.

Conclusion about Essiac

You don't need to be seriously ill to enjoy Essiac Tea - it can be taken at lower, maintenance doses too. Personally, I love it. I feel stronger when I take it regularly (i.e. better immunity), my body feels 'cleaner' and lighter, and it helps to clear up my headaches. Some people may not like the taste, but I find the different versions of Essiac Tea which I taken extremely palatable, even pleasant.

Thus far, I have tried two 8-herb versions of Essiac Tea, and three 4-herb versions. No clinical trials or scientific studies have been carried out on my part, but my subjective experience tells me, at this point, that the Herbal Healer Academy is the source of organic Essiac Tea which makes me feel the best. Their herbs are indeed of tip-top quality, and their prices are reasonable too.

If you decide to give it a try, I believe you will like Essiac too.

Read More: Essiac Tea Recipe - Ingredients and Instructions for Different Recipes | Natural Healing Herbs, Herbals Formulas and Foods - My Favorites | Information on some Herbs | Nutrition Health Articles - Foods, Diets, Supplements, Nutrients and more | Understanding Nutrition | Home Page | Site Search

Share YOUR Knowledge and Experiences on Essiac Tea

Do you have any experiences, knowledge and information on Essiac Tea which would be useful to our other readers? These could include its health benefits and medicinal properties; dosages and amounts to take; potential side effects, adverse reactions and contraindications; preparation instructions; reliable and quality sources; background and history; as well as other related topics. We invite you to share your natural health knowledge and experiences on Essiac Tea here. If applicable, please discuss the exact brands and dosages which you used.

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