I am a great believer in Essiac (and Pau d'arco) , you can read my testimonial on how I cured my Cancer with these things on this forum, just click on "read all articles by canadian yoda" . Essiac begins to work right away though you may not notice the benefits at first, it begins by gently cleansing you of toxins, then goes on to start getting rid of the Cancer. In regards to the Sugar thing, try to stay away from all refined sugar, I know it is hard , its scary how many things it is in , my wife used to spend hours in the supermarkets reading the labels, try to stick with as much unrefined food as possible, veg and fruits , whole grains etc, there is usually a sugerless alternative though some are an aquired taste most become preffered after a while and sugary stuff tastes gross,( though fruits contain a form of Sugar Fructose it is much better for you than refined Sugar as it takes longer for your body to break it down, thus it does not spike your insulin levels .) Also honey is a better choice. Best of all is stevia, an all natural herb that is 200x sweeter than sugar, no carbs, no calories, and numerous health benefits. You can read about these things at www.herb-care.com, I recommend this site because you can order the products there all of which are very high quality or if you just want to read about them there is tons of info, the bottom line is to learn about the alternatives, they do work.
I also would pick up a copy of a book called Beating Cancer with Nutrition by Patrick Quillin, it is an excellent book and tells you in easy to understand terms about sugar, nutrition do's and don'ts it lists foods on an excellent to poor graph so its easy to make better choices. It even has some very good recipies, lots of info on supplements , vitamins etc as well.
Lots of luck,
Your off to a good start with the essiac, but please read up on the Pau d'arco as I credit that with most of my success.
Hope some of this helps..