Thursday, 27 August 2009

Is gulping hot tea linked to cancer?

I know that this is probably old news, seeing as it was reported in March 2009 but according to Iranian Scientists, drinking large quantities of hot tea could be linked to an increased risk of oesophageal cancer. Notably, this is concerning tea which is drunk at 70c or higher and the risk is lessened when milk is added to tea, thus cooling the overall temperature. The article said,

"Drinking a cup of tea in under two minutes straight after it was poured was associated with a five-fold higher risk of cancer compared with drinking tea four or more minutes after being poured..."

Furthermore, a doctor commenting on this issue suggested that tea drinkers simply wait until their tea goes from 'scalding' to 'tolerable' before drinking it. In addition, it was said that in Iranian cultures, there is more of a tradition of drinking tea at such a high temperature and that in the UK, as 'we' tend to add milk to our tea, this cools the tea enough for it not to be risky.

Who knew?


  1. I'm telling all my relatives!!! One of my uncles (the others are just as bad) drinks 6 cups of tea a day (minimum) - 6 VERY hot cups of tea. So glad I have a habit of always adding a drop of milk to my tea once its made!

  2. It should be common sense though shouldn't it? When you eat something that is too hot and it burns your mouth, you wait for it to cool or blow it cool. I would have thought the same applies to tea which would probably be more painful to gulp whilst it's boiling hot...I like my tea hot too but there's a difference between that and scalding!