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Sore Tonsils and Green Tea

author image Suzanne Allen
Suzanne Allen has been writing since 2004, with work published in "Eating for Longevity" and "Journal of Health Psychology." She is a certified group wellness instructor and personal trainer. Allen holds a Bachelor of Arts in communication and information sciences, a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and a Master of Arts in clinical psychology.
Sore Tonsils and Green Tea
Green tea contains catechins, antioxidants that fight bacteria. Photo Credit: Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

The tonsils are located in the back of your mouth, lining the sides of your throat. When a bacteria or virus is present, your tonsils become sore, a condition often accompanied by irritation, redness, inflammation and a scratchy throat. Green tea can help fight bacteria and viruses, reduce inflammation and soothe irritation.

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About Tonsillitis

Sore and inflamed tonsils are characteristics of a condition known as tonsillitis, which occurs when a virus or harmful bacteria infects the tonsils. An infection causes swelling of the tonsils and a sore throat. If your tonsils become so inflamed they interfere with your breathing, your may need to have them removed. Other conditions causing soreness of the tonsils include strep throat, mononucleosis and allergies. Green tea consumption may help prevent and treat sore tonsils. However, talk to your doctor before beginning a regimen of green tea, as it may adversely interact with some medications.

Immune System

Green tea can help enhance your immune functioning by fighting bacterial infections and viruses that may cause swollen tonsils. Green tea contains catechins, a type of antioxidant that improves your immune system response by releasing specific proteins that attack viruses and bacteria, according to Iowa State University. The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends using caffeine-free green tea for your immune-boosting remedy. Mix 1 teaspoon of green tea leaves with 1 cup of boiling water, and steep for 10 minutes. Drink 2 to 4 cups of green tea daily for maximum immune-boosting benefits.


Sore tonsils may result from swelling or inflammation of the throat. Green tea can act as anti-inflammatory agent, potentially reducing the soreness of your tonsils. Epigallocatechin gallate, also known as EGCG, is a primary antioxidant in green tea that helps decrease inflammation in the body. Additionally, gargling and drinking hot beverages, like green tea, may help soothe your sore throat and tonsils.

Antimicrobial Properties

The mouth and oral cavities contain large quantities of bacteria. Green tea possesses microbial properties that inhibit bacterial growth, reports Science Daily. Additionally, infection in the tonsils can cause bad breath or halitosis. Bacteria can get trapped in the pockets of the tonsils and populate, causing a foul-smelling breath. Drinking or gargling with green tea may help decrease and neutralize bacteria in the tonsils.

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