North American Cancer Plants


The plants mentioned on this page are native to North America, especially the United States and Canada.  Some of the Mexican plants are included here and others will be found with the Caribbean and South American plants.


The medicinal uses of bloodroot were learned from Native Americans living in the region of Lake Superior as well as the Cherokee further to the south. Bloodroot was prized for its root sap, an interesting exudate that remarkably resembles blood. The roots, usually used fresh, are made into washes, poultices, snuffs, dental powders, and escharotic salves.


Larrea tridentata ta is an ancient herb that thrives in the arid deserts.  It can be readily found in the Mojave, Sonaran, and Chihuahuan deserts as well as Death Valley, but its territory includes parts of New Mexico and Texas as well. It has waxy green leaves all year long, more if it rains!  The yellow flowers turn into small gray fruits that attract foraging animals. The plant can reach about 10 feet in height and it is said to live thousands of years.


The use of goldenseal was taught to early American colonists by Cherokee and Iroquois medicine men and women.  It was used in many cancer treatments by 19thcentury cancer specialist, Dr. John Pattison, whose work is discussed in Ingrid Naiman’s book, Cancer Salves: A Botanical Approach to Treatment.


Coming soon!

Poke Root

 Coming soon!


Image Credits

Boswellia Serrata Tears
Dreamstime ID 30342512 
© Jochenschneider

Cancer Bush Flower and Leaves
Dreamstime ID 123593236
© Catherine Eckert

Myrrh Gum
Dreamstime ID

Chaparral Leaves
Dreamstime ID 62958948
© Valentyna Chukhlyebova

Red Clover Field
Dreamstime ID 113012771
©Liudmila Laurova

Guggul Resin
Dreamstime ID 62958948


Many experts throughout history have regarded cancer salves and pastes as the most thorough, safe, and efficacious way to treat cancer, especially skin and breast cancers but also cancers of other organs. In this book, Ingrid Naiman meticulously traces the use of such products in ancient India and by Hildegard of Bingen, Native Americans, and modern physicians. She provides detailed instructions for making and using the salves, a fair comparison of the pros and cons, and eight pages of color pictures showing responses to the products. Visit her Cancer Salves site for more information, answers to frequently asked questions, and a checklist for people facing cancer.



Cancer Plants


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Copyright by Dr. Ingrid Naiman 2003 and 2018
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