Is a day without tea even a day at all? For so man people in Ireland, drinking tea in Ireland is a way of life and quite a healthy habit. But we have more proof today that drinking tea before it gets a chance to cool can be quite dangerous
Not for the first time, cancer experts in America have warned that people who drink their tea when it comes right out of the kettle put themselves at risk of contracting cancer.
Scientists studying people in Iran found that a link between people who drink their tea fast and a spike in cancer of the esophogus. In fact, the study by the American Cancer Association found that esophogeal cancer doubled in people who drank their tea at a boiling-hot level.
For the study, over 50,000 people in the Golestan region of Iran were examined over ten years. Golestanis are noted for drinking very hot green tea and black tea, and for this survey, they measured their own tea with a thermometer. Scientists noted that 317 new cases of esophogeal cancer in the area over the 10 year period.
The study provides further backing for the scientific theory that tea at over 65 degrees Celsius is 'probably carcinogenic'.
The American Cancer Society estimates over 13,750 cases of esophageal cancer will come to light in men this year, with a further 3,900 new cases in women.
The author of the report said that tea was not the only risky beverage: coffee and other beverages could cause similar damage.
"Many people enjoy drinking tea, coffee, or other hot beverages. However, according to our report, drinking very hot tea can increase the risk of esophageal cancer, and it is therefore advisable to wait until hot beverages cool down before drinking," said Dr Farhad Islami of the American Cancer Society, who was lead author of this report in the International Journal of Cancer.
It's not the first time that esophogeal cancer risks have been cited in people who drink too-hot tea. Last year, a study of 500,000 people in China cited similar risks.
The study found that people who drank too-hot tea and also had issues with alcohol and tobacco were especially at risk.