It's time of new and trendy foods that every Instagram user wants to try and every restaurateur wants to include in their menu, to attract millennial guests. Bubble tea or boba tea is one such drink, which although originated in Taiwan in the 1980s, went viral only recently after social media overtook our lives and started informing our food choices. Bubble tea became a viral food trend on Instagram, with restaurants around the world selling this colourful drink with pretty-looking tapioca pearls in it. The name comes from the jelly-like appearance of the tapioca pearls that look like bubbles in the drink. The bubble tea obsession, however, may now have reached unhealthy levels, with a 14-year-old girl reportedly ending up with numerous undigested boba pearls clogging up her intestines.
Here's the video showing the scary predicament that the teenager's obsession with bubble tea, lead her into:
The girl, who is from a province in Eastern China, was reportedly rushed to the emergency room, after experiencing extreme stomach pain. The girl didn't experience bowel movements for five days and showed signs of severe bloating, before she was brought in to the hospital by her parents. What the doctors discovered was shocking enough to make news worldwide and scare bubble tea lovers. CT scans of the teenager's abdomen showed over a 100 undigested bubble tea pearls accumulated in her digestive tract. The 'granular shadows' of the 'pearls' could be seen in the CT scans with the pearls seemingly present, not just in her stomach, but right through her intestines and down to her anus, effectively clogging it up.
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Bubble Tea or boba tea contains tapioca pearls
The accumulation of bubble tea pearls in the girl's intestines was said to be a result of copious amounts of the milky drink that the girl is said to have indulged in. In a report in Chinese media outlet Shaoxing News, the girl's doctor claimed that the bubble tea pearls may contain "food additives, thickeners and preservatives", rendering them toxic for consumption. The doctor also advised people to stay away from bubble tea as the 'pearls' in it, can be difficult to digest. The doctor prescribed the girl with laxative to allow her to pass the pearls and relieve her of the stomach pain.
Although this may be an isolated and an extreme case, it is still a cautionary tale warning us against the dangers of over-consumption of seemingly 'trendy' drinks and foods, without complete information. Should everyone quit drinking bubble tea? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!
(This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.)