HOT Tea Raises Risk of Esophageal Cancer Interview with:
“Hot tea #steam” by Thomas Ricker is licensed under CC BY 2.0Jun / 吕筠

Professor, Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
School of Public Health, Peking University Health Science Center
Beijing 100191 What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Esophageal cancer (EC) remains a global concern because of its increasing incidence and persistently poor survival. It poses a bigger threat to less developed regions and men.

Tea is one of the most common beverages worldwide and usually consumed at elevated temperature. Existing evidence remains inconclusive as to the association between tea consumption and EC risk. Tea consumers, especially in Chinese men, are more likely to smoke and drink alcohol. Tobacco smoking and alcohol consumption, as well as the chemical compounds and adverse thermal effect of high-temperature tea, considerably complicate the association between tea consumption and esophageal cancer risk.  What are the main findings?

Response:I n this large prospective Chinese cohort, we found that the association between high-temperature tea consumption and EC risk was dependent on alcohol and tobacco consumption. There was synergistic associations of high-temperature tea consumption with excessive alcohol consumption or smoking on EC risk. Those who had clustering habits of consuming high-temperature tea, excessive alcohol, and tobacco had a risk of developing esophageal cancer over five times as high as those who consumed none. However, in the absence of both excessive alcohol consumption and smoking, daily tea consumption was not associated with esophageal cancer risk. What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Response: It’s important to abstain from high-temperature tea in excessive alcohol consumers and smokers for esophageal cancer prevention. Of course, keeping away from both tobacco and excessive alcohol use is the most important means for EC prevention. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: More prospective studies are warranted to confirm the interactions observed in this study. Studies in which the actual tea temperature is measured are particularly encouraged. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Yu C, Tang H, Guo Y, Bian Z, Yang L, Chen Y, et al. Effect of Hot Tea Consumption and Its Interactions With Alcohol and Tobacco Use on the Risk for Esophageal CancerA Population-Based Cohort Study. Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 6 February 2018] doi: 10.7326/M17-2000

Effect of Hot Tea Consumption and Its Interactions With Alcohol and Tobacco Use on the Risk for Esophageal Cancer

A Population-Based Cohort Study




Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.


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Last Updated on February 5, 2018 by Marie Benz MD FAAD