Ellagic acid

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Ellagic acid (2,3,7,8-tetrahydroxy-chromeno[5,4,3-cde]chromene-5,10-dione) is a natural antioxidant found in numerous fruits, nuts and vegetables.[1]

It is also sold as a "food supplement" with claims of being effective against cancer,[2] heart disease and other ailments. The FDA labels it a "Fake Cancer Cure Consumers Should Avoid".[3]

So, about cancer[edit]

There is no scientific evidence that ellagic acid is a cure or treatment for cancer.[4] Studies to date have almost all been on cell cultures or animals.[1] It actually shows slight promise, inhibiting growth of some tumours, and one cell culture study suggesting it may act against substances that help tumours form new blood vessels. In the only study so far on humans, it seemed to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy in prostate cancer, but did not actually slow disease progression or improve survival.[1]

If you want to try this, some studies suggest you just eat foods containing it, e.g. a nonrandomized study of men with prostate cancer reported pomegranate juice as slowing the increase in blood level of prostate-specific antigen.[5]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Ellagic Acid, sciencedirect.com.
  2. FDA slapping supplement pusher upside the head for claiming it cures cancer
  3. 187 Fake Cancer "Cures" Consumers Should Avoid (US Food and Drug Administration)
  4. Ellagic acid, Memorial Sloane Kettering Cancer Center. "Ellagic acid is found in many foods that are part of a healthy diet, but there is no evidence to support its use for cancer treatment."
  5. Ellagic Acid (American Cancer Society)