In Ayurvedic medicine, oil pulling was used as a cure for inflammation, digestive disorders, tooth decay, cavities, acne, cracked lips, bleeding gums, sore throat, and even cardiovascular disease. It’s also a good way to whiten your teeth naturally. Studies indicate that oil pulling can cure over 30 different conditions, from diabetes to migraines.
Some Ayurveda practitioners recommend using honey, milk, or hot water with herbs for oil pulling. In general, coconut oil is the most widely used liquid. Gandusa, a popular oil pulling technique, involves holding the oil in your mouth for three to five minutes, rinse, and repeat. Kavala requires you to keep the liquid in your mouth for no more than four minutes, then rinse.
Health experts claim that sesame or coconut oil have mild abrasive properties and boast more health benefits than other liquids, making them ideal for oil pulling. These oils also kill disease-causing viruses, bacteria, and fungi. Coconut oil appears to be particularly effective against Streptococcus Mutans. The healthy fats in sesame and coconut oil reduce inflammation, speed up tissue healing, and help prevent cavities. A 2009 study conducted on 20 teenagers with gingivitis found that those who oil pulled regularly experienced a decrease in plaque and Strepto-coccus mutans, a bacterium that causes cavities.
Despite its beneficial effects, oil pulling is still a controversial practice. The research is mixed in what concerns its effectiveness. However, many of its benefits have been proven in studies and clinical trials. I encourage you to try it for a few weeks and chart any health changes!