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Essiac Tea

Essiac tea is a blend of several medicinal herbs brewed in the form of tea which was popularized by a Canadian nurse called Rene Caisse in the early twentieth century. The tea was originally used by the Native Americans for treating a host of ailments as well as for relief from stress and anxiety. Rene Caisse used it to treat cancer effectively and named the brew by simply spelling her last name backwards. It is also spelled as Esiak by people who are not aware of the origin of the tea.

It is possible to buy the tea in liquid form apart from buying the mixture of herbs that are required to be boiled in water. The tea is a potent tonic for detoxifying the body and can boost up the immune system as well. Drinking a cup of the brewed tea daily is believed to be beneficial for the body.

History of Esiak Tea

Rene Caisse experimented with the Essiac tea after learning of it from a woman patient who claimed to have battled breast cancer successfully with the help of the tea. She conducted several experiments to test the efficacy of the tea as an anti-ancer medicine. Dr. Brusch, the personal physician of President John. F. Kennedy worked closely with her and stated that he had succeeded in conquering cancer himself with the aid of the tea.

Essiac Tea Recipe: Commonly Used Ingredients and Preparation

The basic formula for the medicinal herb mixture consists of four ingredients. Greater burdock root, sheep sorrel, the inner portion of slippery elm bark and the Turkish rhubarb are the primary herbs with watercress, red clover, thistle and kelp being used as additional ingredients in order to increase its potency.

The customary method for preparing Essiac teais to add ½-1 pound of the herbs to a gallon of water before bringing it to a boil. The tea is also available commercially in the form of tea bags and steeping the bags in hot water for about 5-10 minutes. It can also be added to cold water and consumed as a rejuvenating liquid.

Serving Suggestions for Maximizing Essiac Tea Benefits

The tea can be brewed in large quantities and stored in a refrigerator for a maximum of two weeks. It is advisable not to remove the herbs before storing it. Shaking the concentrate well before pouring it into tea cups or glasses is mandatory to derive the maximum benefit.

The tea can also be consumed with fruit or vegetable juices which help to mask the unpleasant bitter taste.

Common Essiac Tea Benefits

  • It is a blood cleansing agent.
  • Regularizes the enzyme balance of the body.
  • Aids in bodily cell and tissue repair.
  • Strengthens bones and joints.
  • Boosts the immune system.
  • Removes heavy metals like mercury and aluminum from the tissues thereby acting as an antisdote for metal poisoning.
  • Kills the parasites in the digestive tract.
  • Defends the body against radiation.
  • Clears lung congestion.
  • Aids in liver function.

Side Effects of Esiak Tea

There have been no serious side effects associated with Essiac tea. Nausea, vomiting, headaches and lowering of blood glucose levels may be found in people who consume the tea in excess.


Essiac tea has been promoted as a herbal remedy for cancer and AIDs although there is no scientific evidence to substantiate it.