by Subhuti Dharmananda, Ph.D., Director, Institute for Traditional Medicine, Portland, Oregon

Quercenol is one of two dozen White Tiger formulations. The background information about this formula will be instructive towards learning about the White Tiger formulas and the work of the Institute for Traditional Medicine (ITM).

This formula originated with the growing reports that antioxidant therapies, particularly flavonoids, could reduce the undesired activation of DNA and could protect against cellular damage. Examples of DNA activation to be avoided are the stimulation of oncogenes (cancer genes) that can lead to development of tumors or blood cancers and the stimulation of viral genes that have been imbedded in the body's cells, such as herpes viruses, hepatitis viruses, and HIV. Protection against cellular damage includes reducing adverse effects of toxic chemicals, radiation, and viral activity, protecting, in particular, the intestinal tract, liver, and blood vessels. At the time this formula was first developed, about ten years ago, the substances of particular interest were the flavonoids quercetin, proanthocyanidins, and silymarin and the vitamins C, E, and provitamin A (carotene). Quercetin is a compound found in numerous plants and enters the diet in significant quantities through consumption of apples and onions. Silymarin is found in thistles, mainly the milk thistle Silybum marianum, which is commonly provided in dietary supplements. Proanthocyanidins are obtained mainly from grapes, though they have also been provided in pine bark extracts (e.g., Pycnoginol). The antioxidant vitamins are obtained primarily from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and also from dietary supplements.

A good diet can provide reasonable levels of antioxidants. However, three factors led to a need for producing Quercenol: first, persons with serious illnesses often could not consume enough of the desired foods to obtain an adequate level of antioxidants; second, supplements available at the time generally provided only a limited range of antioxidant activities, so that many people were led to obtain numerous products, one with quercetin, one with carotene, one with vitamins C and E, and another with silymarin; third, even with a good diet and use of some supplements, the level of antioxidants obtained might be too low for the desired therapeutic benefits.

As new research showed particularly valuable effects of polyphenols from tea, this component was added to the Quercenol formulation. The current formulation is described in ITM's book for health professionals: A Bag of Pearls (2002). The relevant page from the book is presented here (please note: the sample indications for use are not intended as claims that the formula will be effective for those indications; only that it is consistent with formulas given under such circumstances).

Quercenol banner
Two tablets provide:
percentage of U.S. RDA provided in parentheses
  Quercetin 400 mg
  Silybum marianum (e) 250 mg
  Proanthocyanadins 125 mg
  Green tea polyphenols 150 mg
  Mixed carotenoids 30 mg
(1000) Vitamin E 300 IU
(830) Vitamin C 500 mg
(67) Zinc 10 mg
(143) Selenium 100 mcg


prevention of cancer and complications of diabetes, treatment of liver inflammation, antiaging


Calmagnium for antiaging

Alpha-Curcumone and Salvia/Ligustrum for hepatitis

Xanthium 12 for allergies

Composition-A for weak immune functions

1 tablet each time, 2-3 times per day; 2 tablets each time twice per day may be used for short-term therapy for allergies, liver inflammation, or toxic reactions.


Natural source mixed carotenoids are used in place of beta carotene for a broad spectrum of action; these are combined with concentrated extracts of herbs that yield the flavonoid ingredients and a complement of vitamin and mineral antioxidants.


This formulation combines some of the best known and most intensively researched antioxidant compounds from nature. Each one is provided in a dosage that is in the range considered effective by modern research efforts. The amount of zinc has been set at a low level compared to some supplements because concerns have been raised that elevating zinc over normal physiological levels can have a detrimental effect on immune system functions; this amount of zinc is considered safe and can be added to the zinc in other supplements, such as Calmagnium. The dosage of silymarin, the active fraction from Silybum marianum, in just two tablets is the same as used in clinical trials to treat liver inflammation. Mixed carotenoids have been used in place of beta carotene to provide a natural blend; natural vitamin E has been used (as with all White Tiger formulas containing vitamin E); and vitamin C is in the calcium ascorbate form (providing valuable calcium and protecting against stomach irritation. Quercetin, proanthocyanidins (from grape seed), and green tea polyphenols are among the most active of the antioxidants; they protect the liver from inflammatory processes, inhibit neoplastic transformation of cells, and reduce viral activity. See also Genistemma and Alpha-Curcumone. In the treatment of viral hepatitis, one may combine a complex herb formula, such as Bupleurum-Gardenia Tablets, Eclipta Tablets, Paris 7, or Salvia-Ligustrum, with Quercenol and/or Alpha-Curcumone.

Each bottle of 84 tablets is a 6 week supply. ITM has produced, on average, 4,200 bottles per year of this formula, enough for about 500 patients to be taking it at any one time. About one-third of these patients are enrolled at the ITM clinics, where this formula is routinely given to patients with chronic illnesses. It has an excellent record of safety and lack of adverse effects. No claims can be made for its effectiveness, however, as it has not been subjected to rigorous testing that would be essential to making any such claim. It is common practice at the ITM clinics to prescribe Quercenol along with another White Tiger formula, Calmagnium, which provides a broad spectrum of high dose vitamins and minerals.

Quercenol is available by prescription, especially for those with serious ailments, though it could be used by any adult as a dietary supplement, with just 1 or 2 tablets per day.

Table 1. Materials in Quercenol
Item Processing and Allay
Green tea extract; 8:1 to yield >70% polyphenols
Mixed carotenoids Dunaliella salina algae; >80% carotenoids
Proanthocyanidins grape seeds; >85% proanthocyanidins
Quercetin eucalyptus; >95% quercetin
Silybum extract; 30:1 to yield 80% silymarin
Selenium natural mineral, as amino acid chelate; fermentation product
Vitamin C fermentation product; >99% vitamin C
Vitamin E soybeans; >99% vitamin E
Zinc natural mineral, as citrate