Coffee Isn’t A Cancer Risk, But Drinking Super Hot Drinks Could Be


Coffee isn’t a cancer risk, but how hot you have it could be [Photo: via Pexels]

Good news if you’re a coffee chugger, bad news if you like that coffee super hot. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), coffee does not cause cancer. What is more risky, however, is super hot drinks.

Back in 1991 coffee was blacklisted as being a possible carcinogen, but the International Agency for Research on Cancer (part of the WHO) has now reviewed over 1,000 studies on coffee and cancer and concluded that there is “inadequate evidence” that coffee causes cancer.

But before you run to the nearest coffee shop for a flat white, the investigation did reveal that the temperature of drinks, like tea and coffee, could be cause for concern.


Make ours a flat white! [Photo: Caio via Pexels]

The report warns that there is evidence that beverages consumed at or above 65°C (149°F), can cause oesophageal cancer because heat damage in the oesophagus from the hot drinks could allow cancer to develop.

“These results suggest that drinking very hot beverages is one probable cause of oesophageal cancer and that it is the temperature, rather than the drinks themselves, that appears to be responsible,” IARC director Christopher Wild said in a statement to the AFP news agency.

But don’t switch your order to iced tea just yet. Experts claim that in European countries, coffee and tea are usually drunk at below 60C, and milk is often added, which further cools the temperature. The warning really heads to tea in Iran and a drink called mate, often drunk in South America at hot temperatures of around 70°C and above.


Good news for coffee chuggers as long as they don’t have it too hot [Photo: via Pexels]

As long as you’re drinking your coffee at a reasonable temperature there shouldn’t be a need to worry. But let your coffee cool before you take that first sip and add some cold water if you’re in a hurry.

Ours is a mocha if you’re asking.

How hot do you like your drinks? Let us know @YahooStyleUK

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