(NaturalPath) A study out of the University of Southern California informed the World Health Organization (WHO) decision to announce that drinking piping hot coffee, tea and the caffeine-infused beverage yerba mate probably causes cancer. The study found that beverages surpassing 149 degrees Fahrenheit (65 degrees Celsius) may increase the risk of tumors in the esophagus.

“Enjoy your coffee or mate, but make sure it’s not very hot,” said one researcher. “There is physical evidence that very hot beverages can contribute to cell injury in the esophagus and this contributes to cancer formation.”

The researchers scoured more than 1,000 studies on more than 20 different types of cancer. With this decision, the WHO now put piping hot drinks in the same category as DDT, frying food at high temperatures, consumption of red meat and the human papillomavirus.

“We were now able to evaluate more carefully the effect of mate itself from the effect of temperature, and we concluded that the observed links between mate drinking and cancer of the esophagus seem to be largely driven by drinking mate very hot,” said the same researcher. “Similar associations are seen for other very hot beverages, like tea or coffee.”

The WHO still says to drink coffee, just not at scalding temperatures, as researchers estimate that a cup of coffee a day decreases the risk of liver cancer by 15 percent. Adding on to that, the researcher said, “For many cancer types, we found that coffee is not carcinogenic. In fact, we found that coffee protects against some cancers such as liver and uterine endometrium cancer.”

So you can drink that coffee, just make sure it isn’t too hot.

raziRazi Berry, Founder and Publisher of Naturopathic Doctor News & Review (ndnr.com) and NaturalPath (thenatpath.com), has spent the last decade as a natural medicine advocate and marketing whiz. She has galvanized and supported the naturopathic community, bringing a higher quality of healthcare to millions of North Americans through her publications. A self-proclaimed health-food junkie and mother of two; she loves all things nature, is obsessed with organic gardening, growing fruit trees (not easy in Phoenix), laughing until she snorts, and homeschooling. She is a little bit crunchy and yes, that is her real name.

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