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Coconut Oil Pulling – What is Oil Pulling and How Does It Work?

It is widely known about all the benefits coconut oil can offer us and our health. But there is this specific method called coconut oil pulling which people use as a makeshift, natural mouthwash. Many who have tried it swear that it is effective.

But you don’t have to take the word of strangers. It turns out that science is also backing their claim, as there have been quite a number of studies which prove the exact same thing.

Namely, it appears that this powerful oil can not only whiten your teeth, it can also freshen your breath and improve your oral health in general!

In fact, most have reported amazing results simply by using this method for just 10 days. They have now integrated it into their morning routines, and for a good reason.

But let us get more into the details on what exactly oil pulling represents and how one does it properly.

coconut oil pulling

Oil Pulling – How to Do it?

It’s a fairly simple procedure. All you need to do is take a tablespoon of oil (preferably coconut) and swish it around in your mouth for about 15 to 20 minutes.

Just make sure not to swallow it or gargle with it. What this does is decrease the amount of harmful bacteria in our mouths. No wonder people in India have been using it as an ancient folk recipe for millennia!

When we heard the word ‘bacteria’, we automatically think of disease. But there are friendly bacteria among the thousands residing in our oral cavity.

Those which are ‘not so friendly’ create a biofilm around our teeth – this is a thin layer which helps them stick to the surface. We know it under the term ‘plaque’, and it is not good news for anyone.

Having a little plaque on one’s teeth is considered normal, but too much of it can cause serious health issues. Some of them include yellow teeth, gingivitis, bad breath, cavities and gum inflammation.

The method of oil pulling is a simple one indeed, and yet so effective for getting rid of those pesky bacteria. You see, when you the oil in your mouth, they get stuck to it and dissolve in that oil. Each time you do this, you remove more and more of the plaque and harmful bacteria from your system.

Why Precisely Coconut Oil?

The ancient Indian folk we mentioned actually used other oils such as sunflower or sesame oil. And while it’s true that oil pulling should be effective no matter what oil you go for, coconut oil is the ideal candidate for this job due to all the health benefits it carries with it.

One of its fatty acids, lauric acid, has been proven to be antimicrobial. Which means further good news as that can help remove fungi, viruses, and bacteria.

And also, we have to admit that coconut oil tastes a whole lot better than most others. It might seem weird and even a bit disgusting to have oil swishing around in your mouth. But you’ll get used to it really quick and marvel at the benefits it can bring you.

Health Benefits of Coconut Oil Pulling

Pulling of Harmful Bacteria – In a study conducted in 2008 and involving 20 boys discovered that oil pulling, in just two weeks, caused a decrease in the amount of Streptococcus Mutants in the mouth.

And while it may not be as effective as the Chlorhexidine mouthwash, it comes without consequences and is much cheaper too!

Reducing Gingivitis and Plaque – Another study compared the effect of both Chlorhexidine and oil pulling in getting rid of gingivitis (which is basically gum inflammation which occurs when one’s immune system begins attacking the plaque-causing bacteria). Both were effective.

Reducing Bad Breath – Halitosis, or more commonly known as bad breath, is usually caused by the accumulated bacteria in one’s mouth. So, it only makes sense that getting rid of the harmful bacteria will also reduce one’s bad breath.

Proof of this is another study which was conducted on 20 adolescents. Coconut oil pulling proved just as effective as Chlorhexidine when it came to reducing foul-smelling breath.

What You Need to Know

We already explained the easy procedure of coconut oil pulling. Here are a few more things you should know before starting this routine. It is best to do the oil pulling first thing in the morning. After you’re done with the swishing part, spit it out and rinse thoroughly before brushing your teeth straight afterward for best results.

Furthermore, since the oil has accumulated lots of toxins and bacteria, it’s a good idea to spit it in your trash can instead of your sink. This is so it doesn’t eventually cause a buildup and clog it.

Another useful tip is to chew on the oil after you’ve put it in your mouth, as coconut oil needs time to liquidify since it is mostly solid when kept at room temperature.

Make sure you swish it properly and all around your mouth (and under your tongue!). But don’t use too much force, especially if you feel pain in your facial muscles. That just means you are overdoing it and that next time you should take a smaller amount of coconut oil and swish in a gentler manner.


This handy oil pulling method using coconut oil is beneficial for both those who have dental and oral problems and those who don’t. It doesn’t have any side effects, only benefits. Which means you’ve got nothing to lose by giving it a try.

We should inform you that there have been some wild claims that oil pulling not only improves oral issues, but also health issues which have nothing to do with one’s oral cavity.

We cannot guarantee whether they are true or not, but one thing is for certain and scientifically proven. Coconut oil pulling can indeed whiten your teeth, kill off bacteria and reduce inflammation.

And, after all, as most oral problems are the result of either inflammation or bacteria (or both) then it only makes sense that improvement is bound to follow once you make a routine of this. Stay healthy, dear readers.

Via: HealthyHolisticLiving

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