What is essiac tea for? Glad you asked! We have worked with essiac for over 30 years, so we are more than happy to put a rest to your question.
Put simply, essiac is blend of eight herbs in particular ratios, all of which are known to have immune-boosting, health-promoting properties. When taken together (brewed as a tea), essiac is believed to strengthen the immune system and purify the body of toxins. As a result, the body becomes more capable of fighting off illness and disease.
Essiac works along with, and enhances, the body's ideal functioning which makes it an ideal alternative choice with minimal side effects.
Essiac contains eight herbs: blessed thistle, burdock root, kelp, sheep sorrel, slippery elm bark, red clover, turkish rhubarb root, and watercress. The formula is a synergistic one, meaning that the combination of the herbs in specific ratios creates a different result than taking the herbs by themselves. The herbs work together in a way that increases the effects they can have.
Essiac is called a "tea" because it is brewed - but it isn't taken like you would think of a regular tea. It is brewed in a large batch (most typically a gallon) and stored in the fridge. The serving size is usually just 3 oz. at a time, which is just under 1/2 cup in liquid measure.
In some health food stores, you will see essiac being sold under the name "Flor Essence." The same eight herbs are found in that formula. However, Flor Essence costs around 8 times as much as our product.
If you see a four-herb "essiac" it is in your best interest to NOT buy it. Rene Caisse found that the eight herb tea worked better and that was her suggestion on what to use.
One of the most common questions we get is on essiac pronunciation. People want to know how to say this funny looking word.
The fact is that there really IS no "correct" way to say essiac. Depending on which region of the country you are from, you may pronounce it differently.
"Essiac" is Rene Caisse's last name spelled backwards. Rene Caisse is known for spreading the use of the tea throughout many people and also for working on improving the formula over the years.
The most common essiac pronunciation is S-E-ack (The letter "S" like you would say in the alphabet, followed by the letter "E" like you would say in the alphabet, followed by 'ack' prounounced like "hack" but without the 'h.') Whew!
Or, put another way, ESS-E-ack.
The next time someone asks you, "What is essiac tea for?" you'll know :)