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What is oil pulling and what are its benefits?

You may or may not have heard of oil pulling. Despite emerging as the hottest new trend in dental care, this method is actually an ancient folk remedy. But what is it? How does it work? And is it time to fit it into your daily routine?

What is oil pulling?


In short, oil pulling involves placing a spoonful of coconut oil in the mouth before swilling for up to 20 minutes, then spitting it out. Traditionally, oil pulling involved using sesame oil as a mouthwash, though coconut oil is what most opt for today as we’ve begun to discover the benefits of this versatile extract.

How does oil pulling work?


It’s theorised that oil pulling works by quite literally pulling the plaque, and the bacteria that causes it, from your teeth and gums. The thick and sticky oil absorbs the film of bacteria that naturally develops over and between our teeth, helping to empty your mouth of germs before you’ve even brushed.

Those who’ve taken up oil pulling long-term claim to see great results. It’s widely believed to improve the appearance of teeth, with many reporting fresher breath too.

There is some science behind it too. Studies have discovered that Lauric acid, one of the fatty acids found in coconut oil, has antimicrobial qualities[1]. What’s more, a 2008 study observed a noticeable reduction in bacteria in the mouth within two weeks of starting daily oil pulling[2].

How to oil pull


Oil pulling is really easy to do

  • Place approximately one tablespoon of oil in your mouth
  • Swish the oil around your mouth for up to 20 minutes. If you’re a beginner, you may want to start at 5 or 10 minutes and gradually work your way up.
  • When swilling in the mouth, try to push the oil around, moving it between teeth and into every corner.
  • Once time is up, spit the oil into a bin or a bag. As the oil is thick, it may block sinks and toilets if disposed of in there regularly.

Cocowhite Coconut Oil


Cocowhite coconut oil is 100% natural and preservative and gluten free. It is blended with special flavours to give it a fresh, minty taste (so you don’t get the bitter taste of unblended coconut oil). Use one handy sachet every day before brushing your teeth. You can use it morning or night, but if you use it before bedtime, then it can work on your teeth whilst you sleep.

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[1] http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/iafp/jfp/2001/00000064/00000006/art00024 [2] http://www.jisppd.com/article.asp?issn=0970-4388;year=2008;volume=26;issue=1;spage=12;epage=17;aulast=Asokan

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