Are you looking for an easy and delicious way to improve your oral health? Look no further than green tea! Studies have shown that this popular beverage can have a significant impact on preventing periodontal disease and tooth decay. In this article, we’ll explore the science behind green tea’s oral health benefits and how you can incorporate it into your daily routine for a healthier smile.

The Surprising Benefits of Green Tea for Gum and Oral Health

The connection between gum health and overall health has been well-established by various research studies. Poor oral hygiene has been linked to a number of infectious and inflammatory diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, respiratory illness, and even cognitive decline. [1] This highlights the importance of maintaining healthy teeth and gums for the overall well-being of an individual.

One way to promote gum and oral health is through the regular consumption of green tea (Camellia sinensis). Green tea has been shown to have numerous benefits in preventing periodontal disease and tooth decay. This is largely due to the presence of polyphenols in green tea, specifically the catechin epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG).

Polyphenols are naturally occurring compounds found in plants. Green tea polyphenols such as EGCG have been found to reduce the adherence of harmful bacteria, such as Porphyromonas gingivalis (The most frequently found bacteria in the subgingival plaques of patients with periodontal disease), to the gums.[2] This is significant as the adherence of bacteria to the tissue cells is the first step of infection. EGCG has also been found to strengthen the antimicrobial barrier of the gums by inducing the secretion of antimicrobial peptides, such as human beta-defensin (HBD). [3]

Green tea has also been shown to inhibit the growth of bacteria and enzymes that lead to tooth decay. It can inhibit the production of acid from plaque, inhibit bacterial and salivary amylase, and thus play a role in the pathogenesis of dental caries.[4]

Several studies have demonstrated the positive effects of green tea on periodontal health. One such study conducted in Japan found an inverse correlation between green tea consumption and markers of periodontal disease such as probing depth (PD), clinical attachment loss (AL), and bleeding on probing (BOP). This study also found that for every cup of green tea consumed, there was a decrease in these three markers.[5]

In addition, green tea has been found to have a variety of potential health benefits including anticarcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties, and benefits in cardiovascular disease. This could further support oral and general health. [6]

To obtain these health benefits, it is recommended to consume three to four cups of green tea daily. The average cup of green tea provides 50-150mg of polyphenols.[7] Due to its accessibility and low cost, including green tea in one’s daily diet can be an easy and effective way to promote gum and oral health.

In summary, regular consumption of green tea can have a positive impact on periodontal health and tooth decay prevention. The polyphenols present in green tea, specifically EGCG, have been found to reduce the adherence of harmful bacteria to the gums, strengthen the antimicrobial barrier, and inhibit the growth of bacteria and enzymes that lead to tooth decay. Incorporating green tea into one’s daily diet is an easy and cost-effective way to promote gum and oral health.


  1. Williams RC, Barnett AH, Claffey N, et al. The potential impact of periodontal disease on general health: a consensus view. Current Med Res Opinion 2008;24(6):1635-1643. [Abstract]
  2. Inhibitory Effects of Green Tea Polyphenols on Growth and Cellular Adherence of an Oral Bacterium, Porphyromonas gingivalis. Senji Sakanaka, Masami Aizawa, Mujo Kim, Takehiko Yamamoto [PDF]
  3. Lombardo Bedran TB, Feghali K, Zhao L, et al. Green tea extract and its major constituent, epigallocatechin-3-gallate, induce epithelial beta-defensin secretion and prevent beta-defensin degradation by Porphyromonas gingivalis. J Periodontal Res 2014;49(5):615-623. [Abstract]
  4. Hamilton-Miller JM. Anti-cariogenic properties of tea (Camellia sinensis). J Med Microbiol 2001;50:299-302. [Abstract]
  5. Kushiyama M, Shimazaki Y, Murakami M, et al. Relationship between intake of green tea and periodontal disease. J Periodontol 2009;80(3):372-377. [Abstract]
  6. Reygaert WC. An Update on the Health Benefits of Green Tea. Beverages. 2017; 3(1):6.
  7. Chatterjee A, Saluja M, Agarwal G, et al. Green tea: A boon for periodontal and general health. J Indian Soc Periodontol 2012;16(2):161-167. [Full Text]
Sonya Reynolds, nutritionist and wellness coach portrait


Sonya Reynolds

I’m Sonya Reynolds, a Sydney-based degree certified Nutritionist and Life Coach with over 14 years of experience. I use a holistic approach to food and mindset to help my clients achieve their health and wellbeing goals.

0408 553 771

Sydney, NSW