Visit our Re-post guidelines
What Is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling is an ancient Indian folk remedy first mentioned in the early Ayurvedic text, the Charaka Samhita, which was believed to have been written approximately 1500 years ago.
One oil pulls by simply swishing a tablespoon of oil (sesame, coconut and sunflower are commonly recommended) in one's mouth for approximately 15-20 minutes on an empty stomach and then spitting it out. [For a "how to" video click here]
The Charaka Samhita describes oil pulling as effective for improving more than just oral health, but also 30 other systemic diseases ranging from headache, migraine to diabetes and asthma.
Modern scientific inquiry increasingly confirms oil pulling's benefit to oral health:
- Proven to be as effective as the chemical chlorhexidine (as in Oral B mouthwash) for chronic bad breath (halitosis),[i] but without the side effects
- Proven to be beneficial in patients with gingivitis[ii] and can result in whiter teeth and pinker gums
- Proven to reduce the cavity-linked Streptococcus mutans bacteria in plaque and saliva of children[iii]
- Proven to exert antibacterial actions through emulsification and saponification[iv]
Because oil pulling positively affects the composition of bacteria in the mouth by killing pathogenic microorganisms, it makes sense that it would be beneficial in other seemingly related health conditions. When the gums or teeth are infected, bacterial cells and/or their highly immunogenic components, e.g. lipopolysaccharide, can more easily enter the blood wreaking widespread inflammation. Insofar as oil pulling nips the bacteria-associated cascade of harmful, inflammatory reactions in the bud, it may reduce the toxic load on the entire body.
Root Causes: How Infected Teeth Damage Your Overall Health
One common cause of this ongoing bacteria-mediated inflammation is the presence of a root canal. There are many reasons to avoid root canals, and common sense would dictate keeping a dead piece of your body attached to living tissue is a bad idea, but millions undergo this procedure under the advice of their dentist or endodontic specialist without fully being informed of the deleterious health consequences.
The reality is that there are miles of maze-like microtubules within the dead tooth, a perfect breeding ground for anaerobic oral microorganisms that secrete potent endotoxins. It is simply impossible to completely fill these voids with dental compounds.