imageThe one who was constipated for five days…
She couldn’t eat and was in major pain… Advertisement
And what was causing all this distress?
Bubble tea. Advertisement
Cue record scratch.
Yeah, that’s right. When doctors scanned her stomach they found an absurd amount of bubble tea pearls.

The girl reported that she had been drinking bubble tea five days prior to her symptoms.
But one doctor suspects that there might be more to the story. Advertisement
Based on the number of pearls in her stomach, this wasn’t just a cup tea or two.

She’d have to have drunk a lot of bubble tea for the problems to become this bad. Advertisement
So, are we all carrying around piles of tapioca balls in our tummies thanks to bubble tea?
Well, maybe, but probably not. Advertisement
Bubble tea pearls are made of tapioca.
Tapioca is made of cassava root, a starchy vegetable that is surprisingly tough to digest.

That doesn’t mean that everyone will have undigested pearls in their system.
But if you’re going buckwild on the boba tea, you might want to cool it. Advertisement
If you’re worried about the health consequences of the tea, constipation is probably the least of your worries.

Those little pearls are basically small sugar balls.

Delicious? Yes. Healthy? Not so much. Advertisement
Not only are they sugary, they’re also carby.
Which can drive their calorie count up quickly. Advertisement
Add on to that the flavor syrups that are used to give bubble tea its sweet flavor.

And you’ve got a drink that’s a little more like a dessert. Advertisement
This isn’t the first health scandal that has plagued bubble tea.
Let’s take a quick look into its history, shall we? Advertisement
In 2012, German researchers looked at what was in bubble tea.

They found something called polychlorinated biphenyls. These are associated with cancer, damage to the nervous system, reproductive system, immune system, and endocrine system. Yikes. Advertisement
And, in 2015, a TV reporter in China also found undigested pearls in her stomach.
Her story runs a little differently though; further investigation found that the pearls contained bits of old tires and the soles of leather shoes… ew. Advertisement
So there are a few reasons to be suspicious of bubble tea.

But it’s not enough for everyone to back off. Advertisement
Some Twitter-users seem uninterested in giving up their delicious tea.
Sure, it will kill me, but it tastes good. Advertisement
Other people were suspicious of the whole story.
This kind of starch apparently shouldn’t cause problems like this.

Unsurprisingly, people are pointing fingers at sugar.
Or possibly additives.
But the picture included with the story has gotten a lot of flak.
Apparently, it’s not even a stomach… Advertisement
Doctors, in particular, were having none of it.
I love it when medical professionals get sassy.

But some people are convinced.
And it looks like they might be laying off the bubble tea. Advertisement
Are you on team bubble tea?
Or would you rather play it safe than sorry? Advertisement
Whether the tea causes constipation or not…
It seems like we should definitely recommend drinking it in moderation. Advertisement
But I would never force someone to give up bubble tea.

It’s too perfect.
So get out there and have some tea for us.
Just make sure you stay hydrated; those sugars can screw with your digestion. Advertisement.

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