Sat, 10 Jun 2023

Esophageal cancer is the invisible killer! According to cancer-related research, drinking, smoking, eating spicy food, and drinking soups and beverages that are too hot may increase the risk of esophageal cancer.

Drinking hot beverages above 65 degrees Celsius may increase the risk of esophageal cancer. (Photo via

New York, NY (Merxwire) - Cancer is one of the main causes of human death. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), nearly 10 million people deaths of cancer in 2020. The public often discusses cancers with many deaths, such as lung cancer, liver cancer, and colorectal cancer. Still, there is another cancer that people ignore, which is a terrible invisible killer: esophageal cancer.

According to estimates, approximately 604,100 people worldwide were diagnosed with esophageal cancer in 2020. There are usually no obvious symptoms in the early stages of esophageal cancer, so it is difficult for people to detect its presence. The tumor will continue to grow in advanced stages, occupying the entire duct and making it difficult for the patient to swallow food.

Other possible symptoms of esophageal cancer include painful swallowing, regurgitation of food, foul-smelling breath, a burning sensation in the center of the chest, and pain behind the breastbone or above the abdomen. Because patients often wait until symptoms are detected before seeking medical attention, most of them are in the terminal stage of cancer, resulting in lower survival rates.

Esophageal cancer make it difficult for people to swallow food. (Photo via

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), if esophageal cancer is diagnosed and treated before it spreads, the 5-year survival rate can reach more than 40%. Cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes or tissues, and the 5-year survival rate drops to 26%. If cancer has spread to other distant organs or lymph nodes, the 5-year survival rate is only 5%.

The global cancer incidence rate shows that esophageal cancer ranks among the top 10 cancers in recent years. Epidemiological studies have found that eating habits are an important carcinogenic factor for esophageal cancer. People with drinking habits have a 2 to 4 times higher risk of esophageal cancer than the general population. In addition, smoking, eating spicy food, and drinking hot beverages that are too hot may increase the risk of esophageal cancer.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) under the World Health Organization has also classified hot drinks over 65 degrees Celsius as a carcinogen for esophageal cancer. Experts recommend that when people drink soups or beverages and feel tongues too hot, they should wait before drinking them to avoid hurting their throat or esophagus.

What other factors may cause esophageal cancer? According to the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) report, alcohol consumption, smoking, HPV infection, gastroesophageal reflux, and achalasia may increase the risk of esophageal cancer. In addition, being overweight or obese is also a risk factor for esophageal cancer.

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