This information describes the common uses of Beta-elemene, how it works, and its possible side effects.

How It Works

Beta-elemene has shown anticancer activity in laboratory studies. More research is needed to study its effects in humans.

Beta-elemene is a compound found in plants such as celery, mint, and in many others used in traditional medicine. Although the pure form is not used as dietary supplement, some cancer patients use herbs high in beta-elemene as treatment. Beta-elemene was shown to prevent growth of cancer cells in laboratory cells by different mechanisms. A few poorly designed studies done in humans showed that it may improve quality of life in cancer patients. It is unclear if raw herbs containing beta-elemene have the same effects in humans. More research is needed.

Purported Uses

  • Cancer Treatment
    Laboratory studies indicate that beta-elemene can stop the growth of cancer cells. A few studies have been done in humans but the results are not reliable. Larger, well designed clinical trials are needed.

Do Not Take If

  • You are undergoing chemotherapy: Beta-elemene may increase the toxicity of chemo drugs, cisplatin and taxanes.
  • You are undergoing radiotherapy: Beta-elemene may increase the adverse effects of radiation therapy.