Tibetan Herbal Tea Agar-35 Reduces Negative Affect and Anxiety: A Placebo-Controlled Pilot Study

Timothy J. Martin, Scott Mist, Tenzin Lektsok, Natalie L. Trent

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Introduction Herbal medicine and other forms of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) are used to treat symptoms of psychiatric disorders in the United States, including anxiety and mood problems. In Traditional Tibetan Medicine anxiety and depression are commonly treated with an herbal compound known as Agar-35. Objective The objective of this pilot study was to explore whether Agar-35 tea would improve anxiety, affect, stress, and rumination. Methods Undergraduate psychology students (N=14) were randomized to drink either Agar-35 tea (n=6) or placebo tea (n=8) for 7 nights. Results The results indicated that Agar-35 significantly reduced participants’ negative affect compared to placebo, U = 6.0, p =.019, effect size, r =.63. Further, Agar-35 also reduced anxiety (trending toward significance), U = 10.0, p =.071, effect size, r =.48. Conclusion In accordance with its use in Tibetan Medicine, these preliminary findings suggest that Agar-35 may benefit aspects of psychological health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)367-370
Number of pages4
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2017


  • Agar-35
  • Anxiety
  • Herbal medicine
  • Herbal tea
  • Negative affect
  • Tibetan medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)
  • Analysis
  • Chiropractics
  • Complementary and alternative medicine


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