Milk Bubble Tea Is Bad For Health?

Discussion in 'Adrian Wong' started by Adrian Wong, Jun 11, 2011.

  1. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    A friend pointed out this interesting "article" about the dangers of drinking milk bubble tea. Take a look :

    It was apparently translated from a Chinese article of a non-specified source :

    I can't read Chinese, but I posted it above so that those who can, can verify that the English translation is accurate.

    Here are my thoughts on this "stunning revelation" :

    1. I did a little research on milk essence. Apparently, it can be made from either milk, or soy milk. If made from milk, then it consists of milk protein, milk sugar, vegetable oil and maltodextrin. If it's of the non-dairy type, then it's made from dehydrated soy milk.

    2. The vegetable oil used is usually palm oil as it does not have to be partially hydrogenated to prevent oxidation, so there should not be any trans fat present.

    3. Trans fat refers to partially-hydrogenated vegetable oil, not fully-hydrogenated vegetable oil. If it's fully hydrogenated, then it becomes saturated fat, NOT transfat.

    4. According to REAL experts, there is NO SAFE LIMIT for trans fat. There is no such thing as an allowable limit for trans fat.

    5. Yes, trans fat is bad for the heart - it increases LDL and decreases HDL. But we all know that.

    6. There is no evidence that the fragrance from milk essence is derived from a chemical that's made from arsenic, lead, copper and other harmful chemicals. You don't need to be a chemist to know that it's impossible to combine arsenic, lead and copper into a single chemical compound...

    7. If it's true that milk essence contains lead, yes, then it can reduce the IQ of everyone drinking it, not to mention cause other symptoms of lead poisoning! Of course, you will have to drink a lot of lead-contaminated milk essence!

    8. Tapioca balls have a rubbery texture, so you do not need millet protein to make it rubbery. I also cannot find any supporting evidence that millet protein is used to make tapioca balls "rubbery".

    9. Plastic isn't a rubbery substance, so it doesn't make sense to add plastic to tapioca balls.

    10. Plastic is also lighter than tapioca so logically, even if it's possible to combine plastic and tapioca, such balls would float to the top, instead of sinking to the bottom as genuine tapioca balls should. AFAIK however, it is not possible to combine plastic with tapioca...

    11. Even if plastic is somehow introduced into the tapioca balls, plastic cannot be digested and cannot be absorbed. Plastic will just exit your body in your stool.

    IMHO, the only danger from bubble tea lies in its sugar content. Drinking too much sugary drinks isn't good. But this is totally different from the claims of trans fat and lead/copper/arsenic poisons and even plastic in bubble tea!

    When I was in Taiwan, I enjoyed many a cup of bubble tea myself. Never keeled over yet. I don't think I feel "stupider" after that either. LOL!

    Do you seriously believe that the Taiwanese would allow bubble tea operators to continue selling bubble tea if they contained trans fat, lead, copper, arsenic and plastic? Think about it...
  2. cypris

    cypris Newbie

    My friends in Singapore are huge fans of Bubble Tea. I personally never liked the idea of drinks made from powder.
  3. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    I love bubble tea. :oops:
  4. ZuePhok

    ZuePhok Just Started

    have you tried "kol" before? it reads like 豆。they are easily the best here and they are extremely popular. you will have to queue for 10-15mins just for a cup of koi bubble tea.

    after drinking it feels like being hugged by mama.. just like when we were young :shifty: it brings back all the happy childhood memory.


    please try!

    i actually stopped drinking koi for almost half year after I saw this on TV.

    Then hor.. one day while passing by the shop I saw boxes of coffemate powder at the corridor. I immediately ordered a cup to drink hahahahaha.. just being kia si la.. can or not?
  5. cypris

    cypris Newbie

    Hahaha! THAT good eh? I've actually only drunk bubble tea way back when it first started in M'sia - when I was still in primary school even during then I never quite liked it. There's this Koi shop anyway?
  6. The_YongGrand

    The_YongGrand Just Started

    I only drank a cup of bubble tea once in a restaurant. Tastes pretty good. The tapioca balls feels a bit rubbery though when I chewed on it but I don't think it's really plastic either.:)
  7. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    You can actually make bubble tea from well.. tea. But I think most people are making them from powder because they last longer in storage and using powder cuts down on the time it takes to make a cup.
  8. ZuePhok

    ZuePhok Just Started

    hahahaha.. Adrian, speaking of that

    I once ordered a bubble milk tea from this kopitiam acrross my office. Guess what I got? "teh-peng" with black bubbles pearls. hahahahaha.. [feet in the air]

    cypris: they have branches located all over the island. yes they are the best! they are pricey though. about 3SGD per cup.

    ? the QUEEN and her BLING ? Blog Archive Best Bubble Tea in Town – Koi Cafe
  9. belikethat

    belikethat Just Started

    the black pearl thing. is actually what ?
  10. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    The large balls are actually tapioca balls. Hence, the chewy texture. Some use small balls which are made from sago.
  11. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    Here's a recent update on the bubble tea. Looks like some of the tapioca balls may not be safe to consume :

  12. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    I've seen a notification from the most popular bubble tea franchise, Cha Time, saying that their tapioca balls are free from maleic acid. Oh well, I will still avoid them if possible.
  13. The_YongGrand

    The_YongGrand Just Started

    I don't usually buy bubble tea nowadays. The balls are expensive, so I just buy the plain one and drink. :)
  14. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    Hehehe... Well, even if they did use those contaminated tapioca balls, they have to immediately dump them and switch to non-contaminated types. This is just damage control. But I think this isn't really their fault. It's not like they intentionally purchased these contaminated / adulterated tapioca balls.

    BTW, tapioca naturally contains a toxin - linamarin, which is converted to cyanide, if improperly processed.
  15. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    I think the drinks are already quite expensive. The boba balls usually cost extra 50 sen (USD 0.17) so they are not an expensive upgrade. I think if you guys are worried, you can switch to sago balls.
  16. The_YongGrand

    The_YongGrand Just Started

    Thanks for the tip. I love munching on these balls, but I'm very concerned about the poison inside. Maybe I should lay off these drinks and the balls as well for the time being.

    The balls cost extra one ringgit (US$0.33) when it's a top-up, in a bubble tea stall near my place. :)
  17. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    Okay, maybe the prices have gone up. It's been quite a while since I had bubble tea... LOL!

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