(Mirror Daily, United States) – A recently published Chinese study shows that consuming very hot tea can up the risk of throat cancer exponentially, especially if you also abuse alcohol or smoke cigarettes.
The findings, which appeared this week in the Annals of Internal Medicine, revealed that smokers and heavy drinkers have a five-fold risk of being diagnosed with esophageal cancer if they their tea is too hot.
The Chinese study involved 456,155 participants in the 20-79 age bracket. The volunteers were followed for nine years, and their smoking, tea consumption, and alcohol consumption habits were self-reported.
Study participants also reported if their tea routine involved warm, hot, or scalding hot tea. Those who used to drink hot or scalding hot tea every day and were also abusing alcohol from time to time had a higher risk of developing throat cancer than their peers who did not drink their tea hot.
Also, smokers who drank their tea hot or very hot had a 56 percent increased risk of throat cancer, researchers reported. Participants who drank alcohol, smoked, and drank their tea burning hot or just hot had a five-fold risk of esophageal cancer.
Very Hot Tea Clearly Tied to Cancer
The study’s findings should be of concern since it is one of the largest studies of its kind. However, the analysis does have some limitations, as participants didn’t use thermometers to measure the temperature of the tea. The assessment of tea temperature was based on self-reports.
The Chinese study is not the first one to find that drinking very hot beverages can cause cancer. The World Health Organization’s research arm found that consuming “very hot beverages” can “probably” lead to cancer.
The safe temperatures for beverages seem to be below 149F or 65C. In the United States, coffee is usually consumed at around 140F. But for non-smokers and those who do not abuse alcohol, the risk of cancer is minimal.
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