Hot cuppa could cause cancer

Steaming hot tea linked to oesophagal cancer

People who drink scalding hot tea are eight times more likely to develop oesophageal cancer, according to a new study by Iranian scientists and reported in the British Medical Journal.

Research carried out on the tea drinking habits of 300 people with throat cancer and 571 healthy people found that drinking tea at 65-69 degrees doubled the risk of contracting the cancer, which affects the tube that carries food from the throat to the stomach, while drinking tea at 70 degrees or more increased the risk eightfold.

Speed of drinking also affected the cancer risk said today’s Times. Drinking tea less than two minutes after pouring instead of waiting four or five minutes led to a fivefold increase in risk.

Commenting on the research findings, David Whiteman, from the Queensland Institute of Medical Research in Australia, said: ‘We should follow the advice of Mrs Beeton, who prescribes a 5-10 minute interval between making and pouring tea, by which time the tea will be sufficiently flavoursome and unlikely to cause thermal injury.’

Making your cuppa nice and milky, the traditional British way, would also cool it down to a less dangerous level.


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