Approximately 40 years ago, the drink we now know as bubble tea or boba was created in Taiwan. Since then, it has exploded in popularity across the globe, rapidly becoming a trendy phenomenon. However, its widespread influence has led to concerns from healthcare professionals regarding the effects of bubble tea ingredients on the human body.
Among the most popular ingredients are milk foam, tapioca pearls, and various fruity flavorings. Unfortunately, all those ingredients have high-calorie counts and contain a considerable amount of sugar. Based on research by Mount Alvernia Hospital in Singapore, milk tea with pearls contains eight teaspoons of sugar while a winter melon tea contains twice the amount of sugar. The highly popular brown sugar milk tea with pearls contains 18.5 teaspoons of sugar exceeding the sugar content of Coca-Cola, which is considered an unhealthy drink with seven teaspoons of sugar. An adult’s daily recommended sugar intake is eight to 11 teaspoons, and five teaspoons for children and teenagers. The sugar level and the calorie counts both come with well-recognized health consequences such as weight gain, which is a factor in the development of obesity. The high sugar content is also a contributing factor in becoming diabetic. Both diabetes and obesity are chronic diseases that are extremely difficult to manage and can lead to potentially fatal health complications such as a stroke or a heart attack. With the increasing trend and popularity of bubble tea, it is essential to be mindful of the frequency and amount of consumption to reduce its many harmful effects on the body.