It has taken quite some time, but oil pulling has finally gained some popularity in the United States. Used primarily inAyurvedic medicine, oil pulling is a fantastic oral detoxification procedure that is simply done by swishing a tablespoon of oil (typicallycoconut, olive or sesame) in your mouth for 10-20 minutes.
What is Oil Pulling? by Dr. Josh Axe and Eric Zielinski
Oil pulling works by cleaning (detoxifying) the oral cavity in a similar way that soap cleans dirty dishes. It literally sucks the dirt (toxins) out of your mouth and creates a clean, antiseptic oral environment that contributes to the proper flow of dental liquid that is needed to prevent cavities and disease.
This unbelievably effective procedure has been used for centuries as a traditional India remedy to:
Cure tooth decay
Prevent bad breath
Heal bleeding gums
Soothe throat dryness
Heal cracked lips
Strengthening gums and jaw
In fact, oil pulling is mentioned in the Ayurvedic text Charaka Samhita where it is claimed to cure about 30 systemic diseases ranging from headaches and tooth decay to diabetes and asthma.
How to Do Oil Pulling with Coconut Oil
We recommend using unrefined, organic coconut oil and a drop or two of clove or tea tree essential oils to achieve the best antiseptic and anti-fungal effects of oil pulling. Here are some tips:
1. Put 2 teaspoons of coconut oil into your mouth. The best time to oil pull (like most other detoxification procedures) is first thing in the morning right after you get out of bed.
2. Swish for 20 minutes. Don’t let the 20 minute time frame deter you. You won’t even notice 20 minutes have gone by if you do this during your normal morning routine (i.e. while you shower, put your clothes on and prep for the day). But, if you can only do it for 5-10 minutes, it’s still worthwhile.
3. Spit oil into the trash. Don’t be shocked if the oil/saliva mixture you spit out is milky white or yellow.
4. Immediately afterwards, rinse your mouth out with warm water. Use salt water for added antimicrobial properties.
5. Finally, brush your teeth as normal. For additional benefits, use my natural toothpaste recipe with baking soda, coconut oil and clove essential oil.
Note: This should be a relatively relaxing process, so don’t feel compelled to vigorously swish your mouth with oil for the entire time or else you’re bound to get sore jaw muscles. Simply move the oil in your mouth and through your teeth without swallowing any of it.
As stated by one study, “The myth that the effect of oil-pulling therapy on oral health was just a placebo effect has been broken”.
Here are just a couple studies proving oil pulling benefits on your oral and whole body health.
Oil Pulling To Prevent Cavities
In 2008, the Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventative Dentistry published a triple-blind random control trial that evaluated the effects oil pulling with sesame oil has onSteptococcus mutans bacterial count in plaque and saliva.
Twenty boys were recruited to be part of two groups; one in which 10 practiced oil pulling and another that used regular mouthwash for 10 minutes every day in the morning.
After collecting samples for 2 weeks, it was discovered that, even though the chemicals in mouth wash were slightly more effective in reducing the bacteria, oil pulling was significantly effective in killing S. mutans, one of the primary causes of cavities.
However I believe if coconut oil was used which has anti-microbial properties unlike sesame oil we may have seen that coconut oil was just as effective or more effective.
Oil Pulling Heals Gum Disease and Bad Breath
In 2010, the same journal shared the results of a similar study that evaluated the effects oil pulling has on bad breath and oral yeast. Again, taking 20 young volunteers, the results of this study were even more in favor of oil pulling than the one above.
According to the authors, “Oil pulling therapy has been equally effective to the chemicals in mouth wash on bad breath and candida”. Additionally, the researchers discovered that oil pulling also has statistically significant effects on reducing the gingival index, a marker that determines the severity for gingivitis (gum disease).
At the end of the day, you have nothing to lose, but everything to gain from oil pulling. There are relatively no known oil pulling side effects and, as we’ve seen in the research, the list of benefits is quite remarkable. Try it today and make it a part of your natural hygiene routine!