Oil pulling is a traditional detoxification method used to remove daily toxins from the body. See if this method is right for you.
Oil pulling is an Ayurvedic remedy involving the swishing of oil such as sunflower or virgin coconut oil for 15-20 minutes. It has been shown to improve oral health and is believed to treat many other health problems. This Hindu practice dates back thousands of years but recently has gained popularity in the United States as more people are seeking natural remedies for chronic illness.
What can swishing oil around your mouth really do?
Dr. Bruce Fife, author of Oil Pulling Therapy, goes as far as to claim that oil pulling can offer relief for chronic diseases such as asthma, diabetes, arthritis and migraines. Dr. Fife believes that health starts with the mouth. There is a proven correlation between oral hygiene and overall health. However, that correlation could have more to do with people who take care of their bodies also caring for their mouths.
More modest claims include relief from bad breath, gingivitis, cavities, and tooth pain as well as whitening teeth. One study found that pulling every day for 45 days helped to significantly reduce gingivitis. Another study showed that pulling reduces the presence of bacteria in the mouth including Streptococcus and that people in the study were less susceptible to dental caries.
How Does it Work?
Oil pulling works because oil attracts the fatty membranes surrounding the microorganisms that live in your mouth. Unlike most washes that consist of mostly water or alcohol, oil binds with the lipids and helps pull the bacteria from the mouth.
How do you do it?
Oil pulling is usually done daily, first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. All you need is oil. You can use sesame or olive oil but most pullers prefer the lighter flavor of sunflower or virgin coconut oil. Many pullers recommend drinking a glass of water beforehand.
Here’s how to oil pull:
- Take 1-3 teaspoons of oil into your mouth
- Suck, push, and pull the oil through the teeth and gums
- Swish the oil continually in the mouth for 15-20 minutes, solution will turn a milky white
- Discard the oil in the trash (don’t want to clog your pipes)
- Rinse out the mouth and brush teeth with warm water