Can the Herb Essiac Reduce Tumors?


Proponents claim this herbal tea works to rid the body of illness.

In the year of the flapper, affectionately known as the roaring 20’s, a Canadian nurse by the name of Rene Caisse in the fall of 1922, working at a hospital in northern Ontario, saw an elderly lady being bathed and noticed one breast was just a mass of scar tissue. She developed this tumor working with her husband in a mining camp 20 years ago and local doctors said it was advanced cancer. They advised that the breast should be removed.

Medicine Man

Having no money for the operation they returned to the camp where a friend of her husband, an Ojibway medicine man, said with remarkable arrogance that he could heal the cancer. He prepared an herbal tea called Essiac, that she drank daily. Her breast began to improve. She made this special herbal tea for over a year and the tumors in the breast slowly disappeared. After twenty years the cancerous tumors have not returned.

Below is Rene Caisse’s original claim to fame recipe as transmitted to her friend and colleague, Mary McPherson:

Essiac Recipe

  • 1 pound (16 oz.) of sheep sorrel herb (powered)
  • 6-1/2 cups (52 oz.) of burdock root (cut)
  • ¼ pound of slippery elm (inner) bark (powered)
  • 1 oz. of Turkish rhubarb root (powered)

*Mix these ingredients thoroughly and store in glass jar in dark cupboard.

Using a measuring cup take 1 oz. of the herb mixture to 32 oz. (1 qt.) of spring water or distilled water, boil for twenty minutes covered, remove from heat cover and let set overnight (10 to 12 hours)

In the morning heat to steaming hot and let settle for a few minutes, then strain through fine strainer into hot sterilized bottles, cap while hot. Store in cool dark place, refrigerate before you open.

$40 Dollars for the Whole Year

This simple recipe only costs $40 dollars for a whole year’s worth of tonic. Just make sure the herbs are organically grown and free from pesticides.


  • Take 1 oz. of Essiac with 2 oz. of warm water every second day at bedtime, on an empty stomach, at least 2-3 hours after supper.
  • Do not eat or drink anything for at least an hour after taking Essiac.
  • Do not take any medications at the same time as taking Essiac. Allow at least three hours between them.
  • Continue the treatment every day for 32 days and then take the treatment every three days.
  • Once you start taking the bottle of Essiac, keep it refrigerated but never in the freezer.

*Rene thought that small amounts of Essiac taken over an extended period of time was safer then frequent stronger doses.


Promoters claim Essiac strengthens the immune system, improves well-being, relieves pain, increases appetite, reduces tumor size, and extends survival. Some also claim that it cleanses the blood, promotes cell repair, restores energy levels, and detoxifies the body. The herbs contained in Essiac are supposed to relieve inflammation, lubricate bones and joints, stimulate the stomach, and eliminate excess mucous in organs, tissues, lymph glands, and nerve channels.

It was originally claimed Essiac worked by changing tumors into normal tissue. Proponents claimed a tumor would become larger and harder after a few doses of Essiac, then would soften, shrink, and be discharged by the body. If you need to try it for yourself, there are no reported side effects.

This information is not intended as medical or nutritional advice. Be sure to consult a professional for individual counseling.


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