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Not Your Cup of Tea

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Posted on Mar 27, 2009
What a Hot Tea

Research showed the risk increased with the hotness of the tea and the speed at which it is drunk.

Drinking hot tea may be bad for you, researchers say, as a study has found that imbibing black tea at temperatures higher than 158 degrees is linked to an increased risk of esophageal cancer.

Ironically, results of the study follow a report last week that green tea has the power to ward off breast cancer—in fact, high consumption of both green tea and mushrooms is believed to slash breast cancer risks by up to 90 percent.

The BBC:

Drinking steaming hot tea has been linked with an increased risk of oesophageal (food tube) cancer, Iranian scientists have found.

The British Medical Journal study found that drinking black tea at temperatures of 70C or higher increased the risk.

Experts said the finding could explain the increased oesophageal cancer risk in some non-Western populations.

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By Bobar, March 30, 2009 at 3:59 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Living in this polluted world eating contaminated food causes cancer.

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By Bisbonian, March 29, 2009 at 8:19 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I see mention in the article of tea drinkers in Iran, the UK, and Australia.  I could not find the word “California” in it anywhere.  Why all the anti-California vitriol?  Yeah, the cancer notices posted all over the state are nuts, but really, what has that got to do with this story?  Give us fruits and nuts a bit of a break…this one ain’t our fault.

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By Deniz Yeter, March 29, 2009 at 1:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Many of you are also overlooking the point that they make.  It’s not the tea itself, but the temperature of the tea and foods consumed.

Some people here are trying to say it’s Monsanto, or pesticides, or some other contaminant.

No association was found for tea itself, so that cannot be the case.

Maybe you should read the entire article before going off on a rant?

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By Deniz Yeter, March 29, 2009 at 1:29 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Rates of esophageal cancer are highest in Western and Southern Asia, stretching from Iran to China.

China has some of the highest rates, and they don’t drink black tea, they drink green tea.

In comparison, countries that drink more black tea such as Turkey, have lower rates.

Possibly a flaw or bias, because people recall how hot they drink their tea and that’s not always reliable.  There is debate about this with head trauma and Parkinson’s disease at the time, because people with Parkinson’s are more likely to recall head trauma, but this isn’t reflected in many other studies when hospital records are used instead.

Higher risks of esophageal cancer are seen with the consumption of opium and alcohol.  Lots of opium addicts in Iran and China.

Epidemiological studies should always be taken with a grain of salt.  It’s one study, it has to be reproduced several times.  High consumption of milk was found to greatly increase Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease) in one study, and wasn’t seen in others.

People shouldn’t freak out until more studies come out showing this, or unless it has a large participation strength.

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By Inherit The Wind, March 29, 2009 at 6:41 am Link to this comment

Hey, Samosamo and Outraged—if it can give me an excuse to avoid tea, as in English black tea, I’m gonna take it!


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By Melanolina, March 29, 2009 at 12:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hmmmmm. I smell Juan Valdez and his buddies behind this. “Quick. Tea is outselling coffee! We gotta make tea look bad! Think of something!”

Damn, Wykyd. And I thought I was the only one (not really) who call them Californitards. There’s only 299,173,694,218 of us who hate them enough to shoot them when they crawl out of the ocean when their state drops into one. HA!

CJ: I think drinking anything at 158 degrees would make one’s esophogus WANT to get cancer just to stop you from doing it more!

Maybe that tiny little place is exporting too much tea and actually making a killing doing it, so American companies want them to stop? Or the British can’t get them under their spell (like they did with idiotic Americans who are banning smoking by ENGLISH LAW and raising taxes to such an illegal amount, expect big landmarks to start blowing up and the words “Guy Fawkes” to be used more often in America”).

It’s a plot. Yeah, yeah. A plot I say. And they ain’t gonna get away wid it, ya hea? Ya HEA?”

<cough> Sorry, Edward G. moment there. hee hee

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By John Crandell, March 28, 2009 at 10:15 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

There is NOTHING new about this. Over twenty years ago, the Journal of the American Medical Association reported a direct link between tannic acid released by hot tea and esophogeal cancer. Those who steep are bound to weep.

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By Christopher Robin, March 28, 2009 at 9:56 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I thought this was old news? I recall hearing that the Dutch a number of centuries ago, drank their tea black and had a higher esophageal cancer incidence?

Anyway, apparently adding milk was the protective factor.

I found a link mentioning this:


” A historical note: According to Gerhard Haneveld, a Dutch scientist, esophageal cancer was widespread among the Dutch when they were insatiable tea drinkers. By the early 1800s, however, coffee had displaced tea as the national drink and throat cancer practically vanished in the Netherlands.

Dr. Morton has also found relationships between the consumption of dry red wine, high in tannin, and cancer of the esophagus.

The Chinese, although they are heavy tea drinkers, drink tea that is low in tannin and have little throat cancer. The British, also profuse drinkers of tea that contains tannin, add milk to their drink which binds tannin, rendering it harmless.”

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By samosamo, March 28, 2009 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment

By Outraged, March 28 at 11:36 pm

Hey man, don’t worry about it. This is more along the lines of disinformation from the msm from whatever sources. The drinking of tea it about 5000 years old and I doubt people would be still consuming it and especially hot(70C) or more if a large portion of a country, state, city or whatever were keeling over from esophageal cancer. It just may be analagous to the poor woman who had a cup of coffee between her legs that she had just bought from hardees, macdougals, wherever and was able to sue for a large some of money and win even though I believe she did not deserve to win and collect as she definitely was ‘personally responsible’ for any discomfort by trying to drink and drive. I do believe that if it isn’t legal in all states, it is against the law to eat or drink anything while you drive in a lot of states.
This could be something just to enrich a bunch lawyers looking for quick cash from gullible and complicit people and another way to set restrictions on people because they just don’t want to be responsible. I mean, we are taught by the actions of our elected officals and big business and the rich that no one has to be responsible, aren’t we?

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By Outraged, March 28, 2009 at 8:36 pm Link to this comment

This thing is simply as bogus as the latest alcohol BS.  Look…. the article states:

“There was no association between the amount of tea consumed and risk of cancer.

But is titled:
“Steaming hot tea linked to cancer”

I know, I know….it’s the supposed “hotness” of it.  Yet, their accepted protocol was:

“Because the researchers had relied on study participants to say how hot their tea was, they then went on to measure the temperature of tea drunk by nearly 50,000 residents of the same area.

This ranged from under 60C to more than 70C, and reported tea drinking temperature and actual temperature was found to be similar.” (apparently 61C - 69C was omitted….huh?)
Anyone remember the civil service warning….“this is only a test”, well… this one should read “This is NOT a test”....“This is NOT a Test”.  The whole thing is bogus guesstimating along with a creative imagination and a penchant for embellishment.

How about these comments:

Our results showed a noticeable increase in risk of oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma associated with drinking hot tea.

“A large proportion of Golestan inhabitants drink hot tea, so this habit may account for a substantial proportion of the cases of oesophageal cancer in this population.”

Huh…?  It may…or it DOES?  They haven’t any proof either way and DECIDED it COULD be hot tea but then again maybe not…. what this DOES tell us is that this journalist or these “researchers” are insane, morbidly bored or so curtailed in what THEY CANNOT SAY that they’ll need to make a story out of a non-story. Whatever.

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By samosamo, March 28, 2009 at 4:47 pm Link to this comment

By Inherit The Wind, March 28 at 6:54 pm
But English Tea? Ugh! With milk and sugar?  That could make me violently ill!
And I like my coffee to cool a little first, too.

Boy howdy, and it is supposed to be proven that milk counter acts the good effects of tea. And if there is any validity in what this post states, I suspect the key words are ‘black tea’ should be what causes esophageal cancer as black tea is roasted more so than the oolongs and green tea is not roasted. But who knows? I do know that I have found green to be my favorite.

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By Inherit The Wind, March 28, 2009 at 3:54 pm Link to this comment

Oh Good!  Now I’ll ALWAYS have an excuse not to drink hot tea! “But it causes throat cancer—Didn’t you know?
“...Tries to take my whiskey and feed me tea!”

‘Course, Iced Tea and Japanese Green Tea will still be on my menu.  But English Tea? Ugh! With milk and sugar?  That could make me violently ill!

And I like my coffee to cool a little first, too.

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By WykydRed, March 28, 2009 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

Oh, and there are teas in China that would knock a Scotsman off his barstool and drag him out the door. One of my favorite Chinese restaurants sold a black tea that I was told, “Only very old people in China drink this because it is so harsh.” I bought a box, tried it, went back and bought 20 more. Good stuff! They don’t even put a name in English on the box. Just a drawing of a stunned dragon flailing about in his death throes. lol

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By WykydRed, March 28, 2009 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment

The only people I can name who eat or drink anything “scalding hot” are idiot males who think stuffing a pizza in their faces as soon as the oven goes “ding!” or drinking substances that are on fire in a bar just to prove their manhood.

My tea is warm, as are most people’s. And being invited to chakai always makes me cry. The whole thing is just a warm simmering all around. Of course the 4 p.m. cuppa is great too in it’s own way. I was raised on that one myself.

I’m just saying, soon as I read this story on Google news, I just knew the Californitards would jump and leap and scream to call the great Eagle Spirit they just learned about on a trip to Moab, UT to “give them aid to cure this villainous ill for which we have been sent to accomplish.” Damned if it didn’t pick up in like 6 hours!

From all the comments here so far, it doesn’t seem as though anyone is being fooled or not expecting it from CA…..

And now that the new movement is gathering to <gasp!> throw tea into water sources across America, whoo boy! Let the shooting begin!

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By samosamo, March 28, 2009 at 12:09 pm Link to this comment

By WykydRed, March 28 at 10:07 am

Believable and expected from ignorant fools. I gave up eating and drinking scalding hot food and drinks decades ago because if it is hot enough to cause the inside of one’s mouth to blister and to peal like from a sunburn, it can’t be good for you.
And at the risk of foolishness, I like the ‘zen’ type moment of the time it takes to feel the heat being disbursed through the cup to kown about when the liquid inside is safely consumable, which is as much about the whole ‘tea ceremony’ as any other part.


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By Kaelieh, March 28, 2009 at 8:30 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

That’s alright, we can just as easily dump coffee into Massachusetts Bay.

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By WykydRed, March 28, 2009 at 7:07 am Link to this comment


Ready for it?.....

This story hit what a day ago? ALREADY, yes, in the hated state of California, whiny-assed little “We’ll force the world to be perfect like us” residents are ALREADY annoying waiters, fast food servers and gas stop attendants by demanding to know “what is the exact temperature of this water/tea/coffee?” And, as usual, they are throwing snitty shitfits if the “morons” providing these beverages do not know… And yes, threatening to get them fired if they cannot provide said information. (I’ll have to put the videos sent by people in CA now on YouTube!)

Please! Snap off and sink into the sea. NO ONE likes Californians. NO ONE. The Constitution of the United States of America DOES apply to everyone there whether you like it or not, and we know you don’t.

Now I’m going to go have a big cup of my usual steaming British tea and a nice ciggie. In the park. Where children play. And watch them breathe the nice, fresh, clean air now laden with 8 kinds of natural acids, heavy metals, poisons and soot that are eating the lungs from the inside out of rats, American Bald Eagles and oooh! people because a volcano put them there. Wonder if there’s a bill already in California government banning volcanoes blowing and “fouling the air”? Wait. It’s Saturday. Gotta wait to check on it on Monday I reckon.

British, Arabs, and generally all Middle Eastern countries drink far more and far harsher and hotter teas than this one, teeny area. And their throat cancers are far, far lower despite having a larger population that smoke like chimneys. But that won’t stop California from fornicating a few numbers into something they’d rather see and demanding the rest of us follow suit in their demands to first force everyone with hot water to publicly post their water temperatures and put up pictures of eviscerated throats and death tolls.

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By samosamo, March 27, 2009 at 9:06 pm Link to this comment

Here is a link to an original chinese tea site. As a matter of fact, the region represented by this site is as old as the discovery of tea which the chinese are still credited with being the first to drink.
Tea can be ordered from here but you will pay just about as much for the shipping as for the tea if you order from it. But some of those teas can be found in the asian supermarkets here in america and elsewhere without the shipping expense. The teas are mostly in brick form and the differences in flavor are as varied as wine. The green teas have flavors that are truly impressive. Also, even if you don’t care to buy the tea, the site has a good bit of interesting information about tea preparation and the benefits of drinking tea.

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By CJ, March 27, 2009 at 8:26 pm Link to this comment

Does this mean the silly (supposedly, but not remotely really, “progressive”) State of California “gub” will finally ban in public places (mainly due to risks associated with inhaling second-hand steam) the drinking of tea at a temperature of more than 158 degrees? Along with taxing ($5 per bag seems self-righteous enough) tea at point of sale so as to afford down-the-road cost of treating esophageal cancer now known to result either from imbibing or (logically following) inhaling tea at a temperature of 158 degrees or greater?

Will warning labels—“Drinking tea at a temperature of more than 158 degrees causes esophageal cancer”—be plastered on each and every teabag? Lest any forget danger that in the real universe lurks pretty much everywhere at all times. For every single living organism in process of dying.

This “science” is idiot “science.” Product of piggy pork whereby “scientists” enjoy a fine upper-middle-class existence. So long as results are surprising. Even better when shocking. So long as results are as necessary.

Okay then: All you tea drinkers stay clear of me. I don’t drink no stinkin’ tea and got no use for yous who do. Be gone with your deadly selves just after leaving your tax dollars whereby to afford more porky “results” of “research” on the counter there.

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By tropicgirl, March 27, 2009 at 2:25 pm Link to this comment

Tea has been drunk throughout the ages without problems. Chinese doctors recommend drinking tea hot, although not too hot. This is crap.


Its well known that tea is no longer grown by local farmers but by big WESTERN and EUROPEAN companies with no real expertise in farming.

I smell Monsanto Cancer Company.

BUT, it is a well-known fact that cigarette companies have boosted their cigarette ads and the number of cigarette smokers have jumped in these Asian countries a hundred-fold. Perhaps the tobacco companies are looking for a SCAPEGOAT? What’s new?

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By samosamo, March 27, 2009 at 11:53 am Link to this comment

What is the esophageal cancer rate in china? Wait, it would be relatively low I believe as most chinese drink green tea.


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