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July 29, 2021 2 min read

Essiac Tea was originally introduced as an alternative cure for cancer by Nurse Rene Caisse and has been used as a natural remedy for many ailments since the 1920’s.  The tea is made up of several herbs: Burdock Root, Slippery Elm, Turkish Rhubarb, Sheep Sorrel and sometimes Cat’s Claw Bark.  Many of these herbs have been used for hundreds of years as traditional naturalistic medicines, but modern scientists have also studied their properties. Along with providing many vitamins and minerals, the combination of these herbs is a powerful natural supplement.

Burdock Root:

Burdock root is a source of prebiotic fibers, chlorogenic acids (shown to have beneficial effects for glucose levels, lipid metabolism, cataracts, and wound- healing), lignans, and quercetin. Biological assays show antioxidant activity, anti-inflammatory, and hypolipidemic properties, and gastric mucosal defense mechanisms, among others. (1)

Slippery Elm Bark:

Slippery Elm has been shown to have antioxidant effects and improve upper and lower gastrointestinal issues.  It also has shown to increase gut health by acting as a prebiotic. (2)(3)

Sheep Sorrel:

Studies have shown that this root has antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties because it is rich in anthraquinones, naphthalenes, flavonoids, stilbenoids, triterpenes, carotenoids, and phenolic acids. Sheep Sorrel may also act as an antihyperglycemic agent (a glucose lowering agent.) (4)(5)

Rhubarb Root:

Rhubarb is rich in antioxidants, particularly anthocyanins, and proanthocyanins. These antioxidants have anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, which help protect you from many health-related issues such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. (6)

Cat’s Claw:

Studies have shown an increase of white blood cells after ingesting Cat’s Claw herb.  Along with having anti-inflammatory properties, Cat’s Claw may also relieve symptoms of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. (7)(8)



1. Food Res Int. 2021Mar;141:109889.doi:10.1016/j.foodres.2020.109889. Epub 2020 Nov 10. Burdock (Arctium lappa L) roots as a source of inulin-type fructans and other bioactive compounds: Current knowledge and future perspectives for food and non-food applications Thaísa M A Moro 1Maria T P S Clerici 2

2. Nutr Res. 2020 Apr;76:37-51.doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2020.02.008. Epub 2020 Feb 8.Herbal formula improves upper and lower gastrointestinal symptoms and gut health in Australian adults with digestive disorders, Karin Ried 1Nikolaj Travica 2Ranjini Dorairaj 3Avni Sali 4

3. AP&T. 2002 Feb, 16:197-205. Antioxidant effects of herbal therapies used by patients with inflammatory bowel disease: an in vitrostudy,L. LangmeadC. DawsonC. HawkinsN. BannaS. LooD. S. Rampton
4. J Food Biochem. 2020 Aug 3;e13415. doi: 10.1111/jfbc.13415. Online ahead of print. Inhibitory potential on key enzymes relevant to type II diabetes mellitus and antioxidant properties of the various extracts and phytochemical constituents from Rumex acetosella L Nadire Özenver1Zühal Güvenalp2Ayşe Kuruüzüm-Uz 1Lütfiye Ömür Demirezer 1

5. J Ethnopharmacol. 2015 Dec 4;175:198-228. doi: 10.1016 /j.jep.2015.09.001. Epub 2015 Sep 14. The Genus Rumex: Review of traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacology Andrea Vasas1Orsolya Orbán-Gyapai1Judit Hohmann 2
6. J Agric Food Chem. 2019 Mar 6;67(9):2519-2529. doi: 10.1021/acs.jafc.9b00037. Epub 2019 Feb 25. Rhein from Rheum rhabarbarum Inhibits Hydrogen-Peroxide-Induced Oxidative Stress in Intestinal Epithelial Cells Partly through PI3K/Akt-Mediated Nrf2/HO-1 Pathways,Shen Zhuang1, Ruyan

 7. Phytomedicine. 2001 Jul;8(4):267-74, doi: 10.1078/0944-7113-00046. Persistent response to pneumococcalvaccine in individuals supplemented with a novel water soluble extract of Uncaria tomentosa, C-Med-100S Lamm1, Y Sheng, R W Perog Yu1Jia Zhong 1Ping Liu 1Zhongjie Liu 1

8. J Inflamm (Lond).2005; 2: 11.doi: 10.1186/1476-9255-2-11, Early relief of osteoarthritis symptoms with a natural mineral supplement and a herbomineral combination: A randomized controlled trialMark JS Miller,1Komal Mehta,2 Sameer Kunte,2 Vidyanand Raut,3 Jayesh Gala,4 Ramesh Dhumale,5 Anil Shukla,2 Hemant Tupalli,2 Himanshu Parikh,2 Paul Bobrowski,6 and Jayesh Chaudhary2