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Essiac

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The story of Essiac begins in 1922 with nurse, Rene Caisse, from Bracebridge, Ontario. When a patient told her about an Ojibwa herbal formula that had helped restore her own health, Caisse prepared a tea with this formula and gave it to her severely ill aunt.

The story of Essiac begins in 1922 with nurse, Rene Caisse, from Bracebridge, Ontario. When a patient told her about an Ojibwa herbal formula that had helped restore her own health, Caisse prepared a tea with this formula and gave it to her severely ill aunt.

Her aunt's health improved tremendously, and this surprising success inspired Caisse to begin administering the formula to many of her patients. She named it Essiac-her name spelled backwards and used it to detoxify and heal patients suffering from a variety of illnesses, including cancer.

The formula was based on four main medicinal herbs well known for enhancing the immune system: burdock root, Indian rhubarb root, sheep sorrel, and slippery elm. When word spread about the formula's efficacy, Caisse was pressured by government authorities and the medical establishment to reveal her secrets.

However, Caisse was adamant that her discovery should never fall into the hands of anyone seeking to profit from it even though she was threatened with fines and even jail time for refusing to divulge the formula behind Essiac. She also refused payment for her treatments, receiving no financial compensation.

Caisse's fight with authorities continued for much of her life. Finally, in the 1970s, former MP Stan Darling delivered a 5,000-name signed petition to Health Canada, which then relented to make Essiac legally available to all Canadians.

In 1977, a year before her death, Caisse imparted the sole proprietary rights and trademark for her formula to a Canadian company for the sum of one dollar. Since then, Essiac Canada International has continued Caisse's mission of making Essiac available to ailing people everywhere. The company has maintained fierce integrity to Caisse's vision and principles.

Research and development play an ever-increasing role at Essiac. "We're participating in several studies," says President T.P. Maloney.

Studies thus far have focused on the formula's potential to treat cancer and other serious illnesses, and results have been positive. Last year, a Purdue University study concluded that "Essiac preparations may be able to inhibit tumour cell growth while enhancing immune response."

The company continues working toward making Essiac available in new markets worldwide. "We're looking into Asia and South America next," notes Maloney. "Our main challenge is finding quality distributors with integrity. Frankly, if they're selling junk, we're not interested in them."

Through ongoing philanthropic efforts, Essiac also strives to commemorate the achievements and legacy of Rene Caisse, the humble RN whose altruistic efforts brought health and relief to thousands of patients in her lifetime.

In 2000, the company contributed the $250,000 Essiac Botanical Library to the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine. More recently, Essiac worked with the government of Ontario to build the Rene M. Caisse Memorial Theatre, a community theatre and centre for the arts in the town of Bracebridge.

To learn more about Essiac, visit www.Essiac-Canada.com.

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