In the mid 1920's, Rene Caisse was head nurse
at the Sisters of Providence Hospital in a northern Ontario town. While
on duty, she was bathing an elderly lady and noticed that one of her breasts
had a lot of scar tissue on it. Upon questioning the lady, she learned
that the women had advanced breast cancer 30 years earlier. The woman explained
that she had met an old Indian medicine man from the Ojibway tribe who
told her he could cure her cancer. She said that she had no money at that
time, and didn't want to have an operation anyway, so she went to see the
Indian. He showed her certain herbs growing in the area and told her to
pick them and make a tea and drink it everyday.
She had no reoccurrence of cancer to that day,
30 years later.
Rene was very interested in what the women had
told her and she wrote down the names of the herbs. A year later, her aunt
had been diagnosed with stomach cancer with a liver involvement. She asked
her Doctor, R.O. Fisher of Toronto, for permission to try the herbs on
her under his observation. Her aunt lived 21 years after being given up
on by the medical profession. Rene Caisse, never claimed that Essiac cured
cancer, but her goal was to control it and alleviate the pain. From 1934
to 1942 she successfully treated thousands of terminally ill cancer patients
in her clinic, many under the observation of a physician. Her own mother
got cancer of the liver, and was immediately started on Essiac. She lived
another 18 years.
Many doctors, surgeons, and scientists visited
her cancer clinic, read case histories, and examined the patients. Many
of them said they believed the Essiac acted upon the glands. It was able
to bring back a balance to all the glands, and restore normal functioning.
WHAT IS ESSIAC?
Essiac is a tea
made from four herbs. A Canadian nurse named Rene Caisse developed it in
1922. She said the formula originally came from an Ojibwa Indian medicine
man. She named it after the backward spelling of her own last name, Caisse.
The 4 main herbs in Essiac are burdock root (Arctium lappa), Indian or
Chinese rhubarb (Rheum palmatum), sheep sorrel (Rumex acetosella) and the
inner bark of slippery elm (Ulmus fulva or Ulmus rubra).
is used in folk medicine to improve digestion, to clean the blood, to increase
urination or as a laxative. Laboratory studies have shown some anti-tumor
effects. Rhubarb can be a strong laxative. Sheep sorrel is claimed to be
effective against cancer. Slippery elm has a long, safe history in alleviating
sore throats. It is used in many herbal cough drops or teas for sore throat.
used the herbal tea to treat patients with cancer. Some of them claimed
to be cured; others said the herbal tea eased their pain. In 1938 in Canada,
a bill was introduced to authorize Caisse to treat cancer. Instead, the
legislature passed a bill that required her to disclose the formula for
Essiac. She refused to do so. In 1977 she sold the formula to a Canadian
is widely available as an herbal health food, without any specific health
claims. There are several different versions of the product. There are
also many claims and counterclaims about authenticity. In 2000, the US
Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint against a distributor of Essiac
for misleading health claims on several web sites
IS ESSIAC USED?
providers of Essiac claim that the only correct way to use the product
is to drink a freshly brewed tea, one to three times a day on an empty
stomach. Essiac is available in liquid form but is also sometimes sold
as a mixture of herbs to be boiled and steeped by the user, or in capsule
form. Caisse reportedly had several variations of the recipe to treat different
forms of cancer. Some versions of Essiac have more than the original four
ingredients. The added ingredients are supposed to enhance the productís
effectiveness and improve its taste. Two common additions are watercress
and Pau d'arco. Yellow dock or curly dock are sometimes used instead of
ARE THE BENEFITS OF ESSIAC?
Proponents of Essiac claim that it strengthens
the immune system, improves appetite, relieves pain and improves overall
quality of life. They also claim that it shrinks tumors and prolongs the
lives of people with cancer.
Essiac activates the body's own natural defenses
without becoming habit-forming. Most patients experience less pain and
overall improvement with the consistent use of Essiac and some patients
continue to live for many years in good health. These four herbs, Burdock,
Slippery Elm, Sheep Sorrel, and Turkish Rhubarb each have significant therapeutic
effects on the body , and when they are combined, there is a synergistic
effect. The Essiac formula, when broken down, shows many of its parts
to be anti-tumor, anti-mutagenic (burdock root) and immune system enhancing.
The real benefits of Essiac are that it is a wonderful detoxifyer and regenerates
the liver and pancreas. An interesting side effect of the tea is the reversal
of type II diabetes.
Helps to cleanse the blood
Normalize the enzymes
Promotes cellular repair, and aids effective assimilation
Regulates cholesterol levels by transforming sugar
Makes bones and joints, ligaments, lungs strong and
Nourishes and stimulates the brain and nervous system
Expels mucus clearing the lungs
Helps eliminate heavy metal toxins in tissues (aluminum,
Purifies the blood
Increases red blood cell production
Protects the body against radiation damage
Helps destroy parasites in the digestive tract
Prevents the buildup of fatty deposits in heart kidney
Assists the liver in producing lecithin, which forms
the myelin sheath that encapsulates the nerve fibers.
Preventative Anti-viral Remedy:
While I take Essiac regularly, I do not get sick
with viral infections. No colds or flu. When I stop taking it, I am more
susceptible. Therefore, my personal opinion is that Essiac prevents (or
helps to prevent) viral infections. Thus, if I DO get sick, I will immediately
start taking Essiac in the dose of an ounce every hour or two throughout
the day with a teaspoon of Cat's claw (which you can buy cheap by the pound
from herb products
company). Also, several times during the day,
I take 15 drops of Echinacea under the tongue. An ear ache or sore throat
disappears in one or two days when I do this.
For preventative use, 0.5 - 2 ounces a day. If
you have cancer then you would take from 2- 4 ounces per day. Before ingesting
the Essiac, shake the bottle vigorously. There will be some sediment in
it. It is suggested that you mix 2 ounces of Essiac tea liquid with 2 ounces
of pure distilled water, heat it, and sip it at least 1/2 hour before eating
and 2 hours after eating ("between meals").
||6 ½ cups
||24 ozs. (1.5 lb.)
||16 ozs. (1 lb.)
|Slippery Elm bark
|Turkey rhubarb root
Mix the herbs together very very thoroughly.
Use 1 cup of herb mix per 2 gallons distilled water
each time you brew.
Your herb mix or essiac herbs should be stored
Essiac contains no preservatives, discard if mold
develops. Unopened bottles can be stored in a cool, dark place, or keep
all the bottles in the refrigerater. Don't freeze essiac or warm it up
in a microwave (use hot water to dilute and warm it).
Mix dry ingredients thoroughly.
Measure out desired amount of dry ingredients.
Pour proportionate amount of water into pot.
Bring water to a rolling boil with the lid on.
Stir dry ingredients into boiling water.
Replace lid and continue boiling at reduced heat
for 10 minutes.
Turn off stove. Scrape down sides of pot and stir
Replace lid, let pot sit and cool undisturbed for
10-12 hours (overnight).
Reheat to steaming hot, but do not let it boil.
Turn off heat and allow herbs to settle for a few
Pour hot liquid through sieve to catch sediment.
Use funnel to fill sterilized bottles, put lids on.
Allow bottles to cool, then tighten lids.
Store in dark cool place, always refrigerate an opened
20 parts burdock root (Arcitum Lappa)
4 parts slippery elm bark (Ulmus Fulva)
1 part turkish rhubarb root (Rheum Officinale)
16 parts sheep sorrell (Rumex Acetosella)
1 part Blessed Thistle,
1 part Kelp,
1 part Red Clover,
1 part Watercress.
Mix all the herbs together, store unused herb
in a ziplock or airtight container
in the freezer. Mix one cup of herbs to 2 gallons
of pure water. You do this by putting the water in a stainless steel or
enamel pot, adding the cup of mix, bringing to a boil. Let sit 6 hours,
then stir vigorously. Let sit another 6 hours, bring to a boil, strain
the goop(*), and save it in
colored bottles in a cool dark area. If the caps on the bottle have poly
inserts so they make an airtight seal, then you do not have to refrigerate
until you open a bottle. You can tell if you did the sterilization and
sealing right because if you did not, a bottle will go bad and taste rancid
after a while in storage.
*Regarding the issue of straining the goop
Things get kind of sloppy when trying to strain
out the goop. All the ingredients are powdered or ground except the burdock
root which is in small chunks like a diced onion. So, after soaking and
boiling, it becomes a sloppy goop. One could argue that the goop is good
for you, but I do not find it very palatable, even though it does not really
taste bad. Some formulas encourage you not to throw it out, but to bottle
it too, even if you have to use a blender or food processor to remove the
small chunks. I have not done this. But if you do leave the goop in the
liquid, I do not imagine it will hurt you at all. That means you will be
taking an elixir that is very thick after you shake the bottle. It also
means you will need
16 to 20 bottles when you make a batch.
I have found the easiest way to strain the goop
out is to get a second pot, pour the first into it through a moderately
fine strainer, and toss out the chunky goop. There will still be a massive
amount of sediment because most of the ingredients are powdered. Then,
I let the pot sit for about ten minutes. I use a big ladle to dip gently
into the pot, and I pour it
through a funnel into the bottles. When I am
way down at the end of the fluid, I skim as much as I can and do not worry
if I get some sludge in the ladle. That is usually my 13th bottle, the
one that goes in the refrigerator. Then I pour the rest of the goop out.
I have tried straining through cheesecloth, but
it is a nasty mess and takes a long time. I have not tried no straining
at all, just letting it sit till it all settles. The reason is that the
boiled mix has a sludgey looking slag on top and it just doesn't look right