Twenty herbs that are proven to be effective in treating cancer and combating side effects of chemotherapy and radiation!


Nearly every home in the United States has been impacted by cancer.  In 2015 alone, it was estimated that 1,658,370 new cases of cancer would be diagnosed. (1)

Due to the prevalence rate of cancer, more and more researchers are studying effective treatment options. Many people are seeking alternative treatment options for their diagnosis.

Many chemotherapy drugs have been altered but originally derived from plants

Herbs have been utilized as medicine for centuries.  In fact, many chemotherapy drugs have been derived from plants.(2) If you are seeking alternative options for cancer treatment consider the following 20 herbs.  Talking to a licensed naturopath doctor about alternative options may help you identify options and dosages.

Twenty herbs that have been backed by research to be effective in the treatment of cancer!

  1. Astragalus:  Astragalus is an immune system booster known for its ability to stimulate the bodies natural production of interferon as well as identify rogue cells.  The MD Anderson Cancer Center in Texas conducted research that concluded that taking Astragalus with radiotherapy doubled survival rate times. (3)
  2. Berberis:  Research has shown that this family of herbs have a strong reaction against cancer and have been used with several different types of cancer but especially ovarian cancer.  In March 2015 Cancer Watch Research, it was showed that this family of herbs outperformed brain cancer drug, Temozolomide in vitro.(3)
  3. Bloodroot:  Research shows that this her is effective in shrinking cancer tumors.  This herb is used in anti-cancer poultice, Black Salve, and has been effective when used with sarcomas.
  4. Butcher’s Broom:  The active ingredient in this her has been effective in shrinking tumors and has the ability to overcome estrogen imbalance.  This her has been effective in the treatment of breast cancer. (3)
  5. Cat’s Claw: This is a powerful immune-stimulant and it enhances phagocytosis.  Research shows that it can reduce tumor size in skin cancer and also helps reduce the side effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. (3)
  6. Chaparral:  A major U.S. study showed that this her can boost the immune system, stop metastases and reduce tumor size.  The herb also has anti-oxidant and anti-microbial properties and low toxicity. (3)
  7. Curcumin:  This herb has been shown to have anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory activity.  Select hospitals in the U.S. have used this herb in treatment of polyps and colon cancer.  Research shows that it is effective in shrinking cancer tumors and stops blood supply to the tumors.  (3)
  8. Dang Shen Root:  This herb increase both white and red blood cell levels and is helpful for patients undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy. (3)
  9. Echinacea:  This herb is a powerful immune system booster and is well known for its impact on colds.  Research also indicates that it could be helpful for brain tumors due to its ability to increase white blood cells. (3)
  10. Feverfew:  Research from Rochester University showed that feverfew is more effective that leukemia drug, cytarabine, in killing leukemia cells.  The FDA put the active ingredient of Feverfew on the approval waiting list but they have yet to approve this herb for cancer treatment. (3)
  11. Goldenseal:  Goldenseal is anti-microbial and affective against parasites.  This herb may be useful in treating stomach cancer.  Stomach cancer is sometimes the result of bacteria Helicobacter pylori.  This bacteria burrows in the mucous lining of the stomach and causes irritation, acid reflux, ulcers and even cancer.  (3)
  12. Milk Thistle:  Milk thistle is well known for its impacts on the liver and has been shown in studies to protect the liver during chemotherapy. Research from the U.S. showed that leukemia patients who took milk thistle reduced chemotherapy side effects as well as liver toxicity. (3)
  13. Pau D’Arco:  This tree bark is anti-bacterial, anti-yeast, and anti-microbial, making this a strong cancer agent.  Research shows that the quinoids found in Pau D’ Arco possess immune strengthening abilities and help in cases of blood and lymph cancers.  (3)
  14. Red Clover:  Royal Marsden cancer centers found that red clover as the ability to fight against estrogen driven cancers, included breast and prostate cancers.  (3)
  15. Sheep’s Sorrell:  This herb is a cleanser and helps regenerate healthy tissues.  Research suggests that this herb can help normalize damaged tissue.(3)
  16. Skullcap:  Research shows that this herb may be effective agains lung, stomach, and intestinal cancer. (3)
  17. Sutherlandia: Studies show that this herb is anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and anti-fungal.  It also provides immune boosting effects.(3)
  18. Thorowax:  Research shows that this herb enhances the production of natural interferon and is useful in bone cancer.(3)
  19. Wheatgrass:  Top private hospitals in South East Asia serve wheatgrass juice to their patients.  It acts as a blood purifier, and cleanses the liver and kidney’s.  Research shows that two weeks of daily use improves blood and tissue oxygen levels and circulation.(3)
  20. Wormwood:  This herb is effective in fighting candida or excess yeasts that occur due to some forms of cancer treatment.  Yeast is thought to be a precipitating factor to the development of cancer.  (3)

Remember to speak to a qualified doctor to discussed use of these herbs and possible dosage requirements.  Research does show that nature’s plants can provide numerous healing properties.

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Lynn Griffith
Lynn is a licensed therapist who enjoys cooking, creativity and enjoys helping other's learn how to care for their minds and bodies through healthy eating.  Lynn has wrote for The Raw Food World News and is currently in the process of building her own website focused on managing mental health through nutrition and wellness.