Health Impact News
“Oil pulling” is an ancient practice in Asia, but suddenly it is catching on in the United States. It involves swishing an oil around in your mouth (coconut oil is the most common one) for dental and other health benefits.
Mainstream media outlets here in the U.S. are now reporting on oil pulling benefits, and even interviewing dentists who are giving positive reviews based on their patients’ experiences. Here are some examples:
by NY1 
It’s a bit of an unusual practice…swishing a spoonful of oil around your mouth for 20 minutes in an effort to promote oral and overall heath. It’s called oil pulling. And while it may sound strange to some, this ancient Ayurvedic technique is making a big comeback.
“Oil pulling is taking an organic oil and swishing it around your mouth and it’s supposed to draw out bad bacteria, toxins. It supposedly helps asthma, diabetes, upper respiratory problems and helps clear the skin,” says Colleen Williams, an oil puller.
Those are big claims for a spoonful of oil. But many, like Colleen, who has been doing it for six months, say they definitely see a difference.
“The acne on my cheeks has gone down, it helps a lot with canker sores. If you bite your cheek it pretty much heals it within a day. And then working the muscles of the face gives you a brightened lifted look,” Williams claims.
Dr. Jonathan Levine is a dentist who says it can’t hurt as long as you can commit to the 20 minutes a day.
“What I really like about oil pulling is that people are now focused on their mouth because there’s this whole connection between oral health and overall health. If you are going to spend 20 minutes on oil pulling, you can spend the two minutes on brushing and also flossing. Your mouth is going to be healthy and we know that inflammation in the mouth is a precursor to inflammation in the body,” Levine says.
Read the Full Article here .
by rtv6 – The Indy Channel 
Some are raving about the results they say they are seeing from swishing oil around in their mouths in an effort to pull bacteria out of their bodies.
Britney Gordon has been adding a spoonful of coconut oil to her daily hygiene routine for about a month. She believes the claims that oil pulling whitens teeth and pulls toxins out of the mouth.
“My teeth are definitely whiter,” Gordon said. “It makes your mouth feel really clean.”
Oil pulling has been around for quite some time, but it’s gaining popularity again through word of mouth.
“Our patients are just very impressed with the results they’re seeing. I’m impressed with the results we’re seeing orally, in terms of hygiene and reduced bacteria and improved health in the gums,” said Dr. Ted Reese, an Indianapolis dentist.
Reese also practices oil pulling. He said patients who do so have reduced plaque. Some have also reported acne clearing, fewer asthma and sinus problems and improvements in heart and stomach conditions.
Reese said oil pulling combats many problems that start in the mouth and is another defense to improve systemic health.
“Bacteria in the mouth gets into the blood stream through infectious gums,” he said.
Read the Full Article here .
The Science of Oil Pulling
One of the reasons oil pulling may be starting to gain mainstream media attention is because there have been some studies conducted recently that have at least validated some of the dental health claims.
A study published last year in the Society for General Microbiology, titled “Coconut oil could combat tooth decay ,” reported that “digested coconut oil is able to attack the bacteria that cause tooth decay.” The study used enzymes to simulate a “digestive” state of coconut oil, but swishing the coconut oil around in your mouth with the natural enzymes in your saliva could easily provide the same benefit.
In a study published in 2011 in the Journal of the Indian Society of Pedodontics & Preventive Dentistry, titled “Effect of oil pulling on halitosis and microorganisms causing halitosis: a randomized controlled pilot trial ,” researchers found that oil pulling reduced plaque and bad breath associated with mouth bacteria.
In 2009 a study published in the Indian Journal of Dental Research reported that, “oil pulling therapy showed a reduction in the plaque index, modified gingival scores, and total colony count of aerobic microorganisms in the plaque of adolescents with plaque-induced gingivitis.” Abstract here .
Oil Pulling Health Benefits Evidence from Testimonials
As the wave of oil pulling news sweeps across the Internet, there are no shortages of testimonials to be found. The alternative media has been publishing these for years now. Here are some from reader comments published from our Facebook Pages and other forums:
I have done the antibiotic/chlorohex thing for my abscess and dental problems, they ALWAYS came back. I have not had ONE since I started the ‘oil pulling’ with coconut oil. My tooth does not need a root canal anymore-my dentist agreed that my gum and dental problems have gone way down since I started-with no drugs! One could say that it must be the placebo effect-but I don’t think so. I have also spread the word with many of my own friends and family-it’s also worked for them…..whiter, shinier teeth too! If it’s working so amazingly for myself and people I care about-I’d much rather put something from nature in my body instead of harsh drugs that don’t work anyways. Antibiotics are part of what I believe has caused my systemic yeast problems anyways-which the coconut oil is working for too. – Lisa
I found an article on “oil pulling” with Virgin Coconut Oil, and started doing that. After just 2 or 3 times I noticed my teeth were whiter. I also liked how my mouth felt after “pulling”. – Laura
I am not sure about coconut oil for your gum problems, but I DO know that oil pulling would definitely help. Do a search on oil pulling and you will get all kinds of info. Our dentist says that our teeth and gums have never looked so good. My husband never flosses because his teeth are so close together that it is difficult and he had the start of gum disease. We have been oil pulling for probably 1 1/2 years and our dentist said my husband’s mouth looks great. I know the dentist doesn’t understand how or why it works and probably doesn’t care to, but he did have to say to keep it up because it was working. – Anita
Definitely look up ‘oil pulling’ as per Carol……I’ve posted a few notes on here on the subject. VIRGIN COCONUT OIL WILL HELP, IF NOT CURE IT! It is such an amazing gift from nature!…I can’t say enough about it. I have been enduring major dental problems in the last few years (i.e. abscesses, cavities, gingivitis, and inflamed taste buds). I tried all the conventional/Western remedies (antibiotics, etc)-NOTHING WORKED! My friend suggested oil pulling….I have to be honest, when I first heard about it, I thought, YEAH RIGHT! I was wrong, it works like a charm. Now I use it as a preventive by gargling with it once or twice a week. Most of my dental problems are under control, my daughter and Dad haven’t had it since I started them on it. – Lisa
I’m oil pulling right now with coconut oil. My gums are healthier than they have ever been, my teeth are whiter and my breath is awesome. It even helped me quit smoking. I love it. – Allison
I oil pull with coconut and I love it, my teeth feel like I have had a cleaning at the dentist, I also had a tooth that was bothering me a bit that no longer hurts. Love it! – Aimee
Yes! Just had a dental checkup and the hygienist had difficulty finding any plaque. I use coconut oil and my teeth are white without all those harsh chemicals. – Darleen
Tips for Oil Pulling
Most people use about a teaspoon or so of oil to swish around in their mouth for 15 to 20 minutes. The used oil should NOT be swallowed, but should be discarded in the trash where it will go into a landfill and be burned up. It will clog drains, so spitting into your sink or toilet is not a good idea.
Coconut oil is by far the most popular choice these days, due to the high amount of lauric acid present in coconut oil. Lauric acid has been known for many years to be a powerful antimicrobial germ killer. Be sure to get a non-refined virgin coconut oil. “Liquid coconut oil” or “MCT Oil” is missing lauric acid, so it is best to avoid those coconut oil derivatives. If refined coconut oil is all you have available, it should work fine, as it will still be loaded with lauric acid (about 50%). Some processes of refining coconut oil do use chemicals and solvents, but there should not be appreciable amounts left in the finished product that you buy.
Sesame oil is also traditionally used for oil pulling, primarily in India. Again, since this something that is going to be in your mouth for such long periods of time, it is preferable get the highest quality oil you can find.
About the author: Unlike many people who write about coconut oil by simply reading about it, Brian Shilhavy actually lived in a coconut producing area of the Philippines for several years with his family, observing firsthand the differences between the diet and health of the younger generation and those of his wife’s parents’ generation still consuming a traditional diet. This led to years of studying Philippine nutrition and dietary patterns first hand while living in a rural farming community in the Philippines. Brian is the author of the best-selling book: Virgin Coconut Oil: How it has changed people’s lives and how it can change yours! 
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