A central concept in both Ayurveda and Western medicine is that oral health is the key to overall wellness.
Keeping your teeth and gums clean and free of bad bacteria helps protect your digestive and respiratory systems, as well as your entire body. Good dental hygiene also helps fight bad breath. If you’ve ever woken up next to a spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend whose breath smelled bad, you know just how important that is. Or maybe you are that spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend yourself!
You’ve probably heard that mouthwash is a useful tool to protect dental health. Unfortunately, many types of mouthwash can cause side effects like canker sores or teeth staining. Even if you use mouthwash correctly, some varieties destroy all your oral bacteria, good and bad. (Yes, there is such a thing as good bacteria, and it’s very important to helping fight the bad.)
If you want to safely reduce the bad oral bacteria in your mouth, then you’ve come to the right place. I’d love to introduce you to an Ayurvedic, or ancient Indian healing, remedy called oil pulling. It has benefited me greatly, and as you’ll see, I am confident it will benefit you too.
What Is Oil Pulling?
What Is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling is a natural dental health remedy that comes out of Ayurvedic medicine. Ayurveda is a thousands-of-years-old whole-body healing system developed in India that is still being studied today. As I describe on my website , many years ago, Ayurveda quite literally saved my life.
Oil pulling uses a natural oil, like coconut or olive oil, as a mouthwash. As you swish the oil around in your mouth, it dissolves the bad bacteria there.
Oil pulling refers to the practice of swishing oil around your mouth for dental health. Pulling oil describes the natural oil used to do the pulling. The terms are a little confusing, but the benefits are crystal clear.
Does Oil Pulling Work?
Absolutely--I do it myself! Oil pulling is a safe and effective way to improve your dental health. But let’s look at what that really means.
Oil Pulling Can Reduce Harmful Oral Bacteria
There are hundreds of different kinds of bacteria in your mouth. Some are good. Others, not so much. These bad bacterias from food residue and other sources cause plaque buildup that leads to gum disease, cavities, and yes, bad breath. Oil pulling reduces the presence of these harmful bacteria without getting rid of the good bacteria too.
A randomized, controlled, triple-blind scientific study has found that coconut oil is effective at reducing harmful, cavity-causing bacteria such as Streptococcus mutans.
Another such study in children found oil pulling to be as effective at reducing this bacteria as standard chlorhexidine mouthwash. This is especially significant because according to the US Food and Drug Administration, children under the age of 6 should not use conventional mouthwash--the chemicals are too dangerous if swallowed.
Pulling oil, on the other hand, is edible. So even if you or a loved one accidentally swallow it, the risks are minimal. Oil pulling is effective, and it’s safe too.
Oil Pulling Can Fight Plaque and Gum Disease
One of the most common oral diseases is gingivitis, the inflammation of the gums. Gingivitis is caused when harmful oral bacteria builds up into plaque. If your gums look puffy and swollen, or bleed when you brush your teeth, I’m sorry to say you may have gingivitis.
Because gingivitis often doesn’t hurt on its own, many people make the mistake of not treating it or properly preventing it in the first place. I don’t want to scare you, but untreated gingivitis can lead to tooth loss, as well as serious illness.
Luckily, oil pulling can be very helpful at keeping gingivitis at bay. Two different studies of adolescents revealed that pulling oil is an effective remedy against gingivitis. Once again, Western medicine shows that oil pulling appears to increase the oral health of people of all ages.
Oil Pulling Can Combat Bad Breath
In all my travels around the world, I have never met a single person who wants bad breath--or who wasn’t horrified to realize that they had it!
The most common cause of bad breath is the buildup of bad bacteria from poor oral hygiene. Again, oil pulling is a wonderful solution. By reducing harmful bacteria, oil pulling fights foul-smelling breath in addition to protecting your oral health. And as another study shows, oil pulling can be as effective as chlorhexidine mouthwash at reducing the markers of bad breath.
Oil Pulling May Have Other Benefits
While a scientific study has yet to study whether oil pulling can naturally whiten teeth, it is widely understood in Ayurvedic circles that this is the case. I don’t whiten my teeth any other way, and I am delighted with their pearly sparkle!
Okay, How Do I Oil Pull?
Oil pulling is wonderfully simple:
- Put a tablespoon of oil in your mouth.
- Swish the oil around for 2-10 minutes, making sure to reach every part of your mouth. You can swish while you do other activities, like washing your face or getting dressed.
- Once you’re finished, simply spit out the oil, brush your teeth with toothpaste, and go on with your day.
Oil pulling is easy, safe, and effective. There’s no downside. Start using a specially formulated, great-tasting pulling oil like one of GuruNanda’s today and swish your way to a healthier smile.