Essiac Tea?

Has anyone had any experiences - good or bad with this herbal preparation? I've read the hype and the testimonials, but whether they real or not - who knows?

I am interested in trying it out, exploring the topic, but - always - I wonder about what's real, what's "folklore" and what may or might not actually hurt or help.

Currently, I am in my second full remission from endometrial cancer that has metatisized to my lung. (two treatment rounds of carbo/taxol). I would very much like to do whatever I can to extend this remission. (I do watch my diet and exercise 2 to 3 hours a week. I take lots of supplements and a daily baby aspirin, as well).

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In my opinion it seems lots of people are selling this product today.According to the family that wanted me to drink it, it cures everything! I talked to my research nurse and she suggested I not drink it, I am on chemo. I looked on line and saw alot of negative information. I didn't go to the American Cancer Society but they look into things and can even give you the history. 3bean has the website address.

May you stay in remission forever!

Marty

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The ND's at Bastyr University say they consider essaic to be a liver detox but it does nothing for cancer. All the stories are anecdotal. People who are "cured" may be doing a variety of things or their bodies may just be different with regard to immunity.

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There is only one true Essaic tea. Don't use anything else put out by other companies.

Since you are not in active treatment, I don't see how it can hurt you. You're not using it as a cancer cure, so no big deal.

It does require preparation, though - boiling it in bulk and storing it in glass. Don't use anything but the pure product.

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I drank it for a while after treatment for breast cancer. It tasted nasty to me.

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What Selene said. There is some in a bottle called something-or-other Essence that you can add to juices or smoothies. It won't hurt anything, and may even help. Who knows; we are all different.

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I tried it last summer and I believe it caused my CA-125 to drop from 470 to 391. I started trying it again on November 17th of this year and am due for another CA-125 soon, which should tell us something. I had a good experience with the place I purchased it, which is in my area and have spoken on the phone with two men (no women yet, or ovca survivors) who seemed to be helped by it. I am also taking Metformin, 1000 mg/ day, a fermented drink called Kombucha tea and some supplements. I am a Type 1 diabetic. I'm waiting to get my CA-125 done until I feel a bit better. Have some kind of a cold virus and want to let it clear out of my system as CA-125 results may be slightly more accurate. Please remind me, so I remember to post back here again during Christmas week with my results. I am also BRCA1, and my tumors seem to grow fairly slowly and seem responsive to some efforts to slow their growth down.

The man I bought it from seemed like a good guy. He personally came over and delivered it, and sold it to me for a fraction of the usual cost. The tea is quite affordable without the discount he gave. He is 47 and looks no older than 30. We all marvelled at how young he looked. He had a very full head of lovely hair and very little gray. He has been drinking it for 26 years. He also gave it to his father, a smoker, who had advanced lung cancer. His father lived 9 years after starting Essiac. He also never stopped smoking! He died from lung disease due to the smoking but not cancer. My confidence in the local family that is doing this and their product is fairly high. Again, please remind me so I remember to post results Christmas week. Thanks!

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I think this stuff was developed by a nurse that eventually died of cancer. Research it thoroughly before using.

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At the risk of offending anyone, I quite agree with the nurse who suggested not drinking it. A friend who is really too quick to jump onto new fads bought the tea and the booklet written by (supposedly) the nurse who "discovered" it and whose name spelled backwards is its name. It was a gift to me, so I accepted it, bought the recommended tall narrow pot to prepare it and read the booklet. I prepared one batch of it. I agree, it tastes nasty. Plus, you are supposed to have a sort of ropy concoction when it's ready, and you "chew" this, not like sipping tea. My poor stomach didn't forgive me for a couple of weeks. I drank about half of the solution, then tossed it. By then I had plowed through the boring never-ending accounts of the numerous miracle cures to its credit. I should mention that several years ago I went on Atkins diet in the hope of getting healthier. His book was a tiresome collection of cases he had miraculously turned around with this diet, and he kept saying "you'll feel better than you ever have before". I kept feeling worse by the day, and stuck it out for three months. So when the tea entered my life, I was a little gun shy. I would love to find some wonderful cure or treatment, but my experience has been that the only winners are those selling it. Recently, I learned that that tea is now being marketed in some areas the same way Shaklee was. Not for me.

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Kombucha for cancer? No way. It's a fermented product which is sure great for your gut health - and I drink a few ounces every day also. But it is not a cancer remedy!!

Also, anyone who delivers Essaic tea to you ... Well it definitely sounds like a MLM scheme.

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I've tried to avoid any new recurrence drinking Essiac Tea every morning following the rules and regulations, what a joke!!!!!!!!
The Beast came back for 4th time and nothing can't stop it. I've changed my diet, organic for over 7years, juicing and doing everything
I can to get longer remissions, Everything is anecdotal and doesn't apply, in that horrific disease.
I am looking for IP now, if I want to leave for a while with longer remissions.

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My sister tried to talk me into drinking it based on stories she had heard of miraculous recoveries. Checked online at several reputable sites and didn't like what I read.

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I'm with Selene - it can't hurt to try it and might even help - if you use the original formula - and you don't expect it to cure cancer. It might just help, as part of a total approach. That's my opinion anyway.

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For my wife’s stage IIIC OVCA, I have investigated almost every "alternative" treatment for cancer that popular literature cites. ESSIAC is for me still a big riddle. It is not a new fad, but a cancer treatment from the 1920's that was an herbal mix obtained from an Ojibway medicine man. The Catholic nurse Rene' Caisse dedicated her life to treatment of palliative care cancer patients (free of charge) at a time when doctors had no treatment. She brought enough cancer patients into remission to attract attention of Health Canada, and the support of eight Toronto doctors that petitioned to prevent her imprisonment for practicing medicine without a license. The town of Bracebridge donated a hotel (seized for back-taxes) so she could expand her clinic in 1934.

Many people could smell big money in her treatment methods and major names in heath research got involved such as Dr. Sir Frederick Banting. He learned about it when a woman with cancer of the bowel, and diabetes was being treated with ESSIAC and there was fear that insulin might interfere with her cancer treatment.

Rene’ Caisse used both injections and a “tea” or tonic, made from a mix of Burdock Root, Sheep Sorrel, Slippery Elm Bark and Rhubarb Root, all native to Ontario bush.

The stories of cancer survivors are anecdotal as previous posters have indicated. One woman, May Henderson, interviewed in 1977, was treated in Bracebridge, Ontario in 1937 when she turned down surgery for a double mastectomy and removal of a grapefruit sized tumour in her uterus. Since clinical trials as we know them today were rarely done in the 1930’s, and since doctors hoarded their patients’ records, we cannot verify. But there were efforts at clinical trials with ESSIAC and there are archival records.

Rene’ Caisse went to Northwestern University (Chicago) and treated some 30 terminal cancer patients in 1937 under the supervision of Dr. John Wolfer and 4 other doctors. Results were good enough to give her an offer of a clinic at Passavant Hospital, but she refused to abandon her Bracebridge clinic. In 1938, a petition of 55,000 signatures of patients, their families and doctors was circulated to allow her to practice medicine without a license. A Royal Cancer Commission was launched in 1938, and ESSIAC became a political target. Her clinic was closed in 1942. She essentially went “underground” with her treatment.

In 1959, Dr. Charles Brusch, personal physician of President John F. Kennedy, Director of the Brusch Medical Center, agreed to work with Rene Caisse, now age 70, to verify and then commercialize her formula. In 1973, the Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center participated in animal studies. Bottom line: the ESSIAC mix seemed to work to send some cancers into remission, but the tests could not meet “clinical trial” standards, because herbal mixes are not consistent, and the active ingredients couldn’t be isolated for patenting. The product was authorized as a “food supplement” but not a cancer treatment. Neither FDA nor Health Canada would allow mention of “cancer”.

There are several companies now flogging versions of ESSIAC though health food stores, and on-line, including the 4 original herbs and other mixes of 5, 6 or 7 herbs – each claiming to be the “true” ESSIAC:

Resperin Canada Limited (Original Caisse Formula)

ESSIAC Canada International Inc. (ESSIAC- Traditional Herbal Medicine)

Flora Ltd (Burnaby, B.C.) ( FLOR-ESSENCE)

Today, our local health food store has a wall of ESSIAC and Flor-Essence in stock. Why people buy it , I don’t know: for cancer or as health tonic?. I bought both the tonic and tea for my wife – but we haven’t opened the bottles. Our oncologist won’t approve of it. A local woman with breast cancer takes it and swears her tumours are shrinking. Some ovarian cancer books have mentioned patients taking ESSIAC but without success. In my mind, the mater is not settled. It may work for some women. I just don’t know but I cannot dismiss it as quackery. Buyer beware. Which product if any, can match the 1930's success, is a big question.

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I really value your comments. It is so hard, when so many of the decisions we all have to make every day can - literally - be "life and death" ones. Your comments (pro and con) have more or less mirrored what I've been reading. So hard to know what to do....

Honestly, I have been researching it for several months now, while I was still in chemo (did not take it then, my dr. would have had a cow - and she would have been quite right...chemo is really tricky, under the best circumstances and she did not even want me taking vitamin C or D during chemo, because it might interfere with its effectiveness).

But I kept reading. Now, I am in a full remission (my second one in a little over 2 years). I am really seeking ways to extend that. I am trying to stick to a very low carb/low fat/low sugar diet. (BUt I'm just not a totally strict about it, as I should be all the time). I do guided weight training (to strengthen my joints and muscles, with someone who understands working with people with cancer) and swim two to three hours a week for cardio/fat burning exercise. I take a baby aspirin every day and a batch of anti-oxidants. At the moment, I'm feeling great, active, healthy, the whole nine yards.

Anyway, looking into each of the separate herbs in these gel caps I started taking a couple of days ago (Essiac 8 - an 8 herb preparation that supposedly was developed by Rene’ Caisse and Dr. Charles Brusch in the late fifties) has Sheep sorrel, Turkish Rhubarb, Burdock root, kelp. slippery elm and three other herbs escaping me at the moment. I looked each one of the them up, in herbals and on the Sloane Kettering herbal guide (online, on their site). What they say pretty much agrees with what a lot of you all have said: that, so long as I am not actively in chemo, nothing in them will "hurt" me...they just have no proven value. I looked further - these herbs do have THE "usual" anti-oxidants is very large quantities, along with things like calcium, magnesium, zinc, ormega 3s and 6s...all things my dr. is now encouraging me to take anyway.

I do not think I would probably ever "chew" the tea through a piece of rope (as one person related) or even force something really nasty down my throat several times a day - but taking these capsules? Hey, I think I'm going to give it a try...at least while I'm still in remission....and THAT could change at any time, as we all know.

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Have you looked into Iscador/mistletoe?

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I am deeply interested in it, want to ask my onc this week about it (I have a CT/bloodwork report coming up on Thursday). How do you get it?? Where can I find good info on it??

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There is good information on it within this thread - dbirk2012's post, above, is almost verbatim from the websites about it. Also, click on the link that 3Bean included in her post.

You can buy it at any well-stocked health food store. Do NOT buy it from someone who carries it as an MLM product -- like Shaklee or Avon -- this is not the real stuff.

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I thought this thread was about Essiac tea, but since mom is suggesting you check out mistletoe, I'd like to mention that it is ILLEGAL to use or distribute mistletoe drugs in the US outside of clinical trials.

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/cam/mistletoe/patient/page2

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3Bean, we have been through this many times before. Iscador is not illegal and there are many people here using it (with success!), You can only obtain it through a doctor.

debkw, here are links to discussions about it, check them out:

http://www.inspire.com/groups/ovarian-cancer-national-alliance/discussion/i scador-mistletoe-benefits-for-primary-peritoneal-carcinoma/?ref=as&asat=605 97587

http://www.inspire.com/groups/ovarian-cancer-national-alliance/discussion/m istletoe-is-still-working-after-nine-months/

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