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Green Tea: A Cure And Prevention For Food Poisoning

Updated on March 28, 2011

Green Tea: A Cure And Prevention For Food Poisoning

It has long been known that green tea has the ability to kill the bacteria responsible for causing food poisoning. Although food poisoning can be deadly in extreme cases, symptoms are normally no worse than diarrhea, nausea, abdominal cramps and vomiting. Not life threatening but unpleasant and incapacitating none the less and could cause time off work or the inability to carry out your normal every day activities.

Bacillus Cereus

Drinking four or five cups of green tea every day can protect our bodies against harmful bacteria that cause food poisoning like bacillus cereus. Bacillus cereus is usually the result of improper cooking and/or improper refrigeration, these conditions allow the bacterial spores to breed and cultivate.

Bacillus cereus can trigger two unpleasant forms of food-borne illnesses. The emetic form has an incubation period of 1 to 6 hours and is characterized by nausea, vomiting and abdominal cramps. This is the "short-incubation" form of the disease. (Emetic refers to a medicine or agent that induces nausea and vomiting.)

The diarrheal form of the disease has an incubation period of 8 to 16 hours and is characterized by abdominal cramps and diarrhea. This form is known as the "long-incubation" form of the disease and rarely lasts more than 24 hours after onset. In some circumstances symptoms may last longer.


Research has also shown that green tea’s antibacterial properties are effective against no less than 26 separate strains of Salmonella. Although Salmonella requires higher concentrations of green tea for inhibition tests showed symptoms could be alleviated somewhat even when infused and consumed at normal strength.

It appears that we have to thank catechins, a powerful source of antioxidants and in particular EGCG, the primary polyphenol catechin of green tea, for this cure. Research by the UK Tea Council found that these antioxidants were more active than some off the shelf antibiotics at comparable concentrations.

Drinking green tea can protect against harmful food borne bacteria including bacillus cereus and salmonella. By drinking green tea on a regular basis, it is possible to incapacitate these harmful bacteria and limit the damage they inflict on our bodies. The anti-oxidants present in green tea might not completely protect you from the symptoms of extremely virulent cases of food poisoning, however it will lessen their effects.

Further Reading

The Health Benefits Of Green Tea


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    • KenWu profile image

      KenWu 7 years ago from Malaysia

      Never know that green tea can cure food poisoning. I thought people drink it either for pleasure or lose weight.

    • gramarye profile image

      gramarye 7 years ago from Adelaide - Australia

      This is really useful information. Thanks for the informative hub, and reminder to up my green tea intake!