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Hot drinks and Oesophageal cancer: Know the link, symptoms and prevention

Experts advise against consuming excessive amounts of hot beverages, as it may increase the risk of developing esophageal cancer. It is crucial to understand the link between hot drinks and this type of cancer, as well as its symptoms and preventative measures.

Health Desk Edited By: Health Desk New Delhi Published on: March 31, 2023 19:00 IST
Hot drinks and Oesophageal cancer
Image Source : FREEPIK Hot drinks and Oesophageal cancer: know the link, symptoms and prevention

If you prefer a scorching-hot cup of coffee, you might develop esophageal cancer. According to a study that was published in The Lancet Oncology, drinking tea hotter than normal (roughly at 70 °C) increases the risk of oesophageal cancer in nations like China, Iran, and Turkey.

Drinking extremely hot liquids may increase your risk of developing oesophageal cancer due to thermal and chemical damage to the oesophageal mucosa, according to specialists. Research has shown that hot beverages may be associated with oesophageal cancer and that these substances can be harmful or malignant to epithelial cells. 

Hence, by being aware of the connection between consuming hot beverages and oesophageal cancer, its symptoms, and prevention, you can protect your food pipe.

Dr. Parag Dashatwar, a leading gastroenterologist and hepatologist, cited a 2016 report from the International Agency for Research on Cancer under the World Health Organisation, highlighting that "although experiments employed beverages with higher temperatures than what people regularly drink, consuming hot drinks like coffee or tea may damage the lining of the food pipe (oesophageal epithelium)."

Dr. Dashatwar advised people to wait until hot drinks have cooled to a safe temperature (below 60-65°C) before consuming them

However, the doctor also stated that hot beverages like tea are not responsible alone for the cancer. Environmental toxins such as pollution, lifestyle habits like smoking and drinking, eating smoked meat, and a lack of personal hygiene can increase the risk of oesophageal cancer.  

Oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) and esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) are two types of cancer that might be connected to the oesophagus.


  • Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing
  • Instant weight loss 
  • Pressure or burning in the chest 
  • Aggravating heartburn or indigestion
  • Coughing or hoarseness


  • A blockage of the oesophagus.
  • Pain and bleeding in the oesophagus


It is possible to lower your risk of developing oesophageal cancer by quitting smoking and drinking alcohol; eating more fruits and vegetables; and maintaining a healthy weight.

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