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Oil Pulling - help with the science

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  • Oil Pulling - help with the science

    Oil Pulling.

    Does anyone here practice it? I'm not at all interested in any potential 'toxin removal' or similar. I don't personally believe that detoxifying one's liver is possible by putting oil in one's mouth for 20 minutes - and I'd prefer not to discuss that side of it in this thread. I'm purely interested in any known, or logically sound, detrimental effects from swallowing the oil once finished swishing it around. (Obviously discounting any potential 'toxins' that have become 'bound to' said oil in the process).

    From my limited reading on the subject, swishing certain oils around in the mouth can have similar effects on the teeth and gums as a chemical mouthwash. Again, according to what I've read, bacteria residing in the mouth may be absorbed by the oil and expelled from the body when the oil is spat out. (Actually the phrase used is that "the bacteria is fat-soluble and dissolves into the oil"). The theory goes that, aside from the 'toxins' you 'pulled', you also don't want to swallow the oil due to the bacteria it contains once you've finished the process.

    As I have no aversion to coconut oil, and I certainly love my dietary saturated fat, I have to ponder whether there's any validity to these concerns. Firstly, if the bacteria is already living in your oral cavity, how bad could it possibly be to swallow. My thought is that in normal day to day life you would regularly be swallowing these bacteria in your saliva. Secondly, if the bacteria supposedly dissolve into the oil, shouldn't they become a non-issue?

    Unfortunately I haven't had much luck finding sensible information on the matter. Plenty of sites promising to detoxify my body if I do it, a few studies showing it can be effective if combined with other dental hygiene practises, and lots of blogs debunking the myths surrounding detoxification - but not anything squarely in the middle with info on what I really want to know.

    Your thoughts?

  • #2
    There isn't any science.

    M.

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    • #3
      Thanks for the prompt response M. Are you saying that the studies that have conclusions like "oil pulling therapy has been equally effective like chlorhexidine on halitosis and organisms, associated with halitosis" are bad? Or are you saying there's no science on any effects caused by swallowing oil after swishing it around in the mouth? Can you please elaborate?

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      • #4
        Halitosis is a fancy name for bad breath.
        I thought coconut oil had antibacterial properties. Can't remember where I heard/read that.

        Sent from my HTC_PN071 using Tapatalk

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        • #5
          Google is your friend: Oil pulling science - Boise Nutrition | Examiner.com
          Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

          Griff's cholesterol primer
          5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
          Winterbike: What I eat every day is what other people eat to treat themselves.
          TQP: I find for me that nutrition is much more important than what I do in the gym.
          bloodorchid is always right

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          • #6
            Originally posted by magicmerl View Post
            Thanks for the comment magicmerl. While I agree that Google should be everyone's friend - to the point where I've been known to link people to search results using LMGTFY - the link you posted doesn't answer either of my questions...

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            • #7
              I make toothpaste with baking soda and coconut oil and that works for me. I do swish it around a bit before I spit it out.

              Sent from my Nexus 7 using Marks Daily Apple Forum mobile app

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              • #8
                Originally posted by dislegal View Post
                Thanks for the comment magicmerl. While I agree that Google should be everyone's friend - to the point where I've been known to link people to search results using LMGTFY - the link you posted doesn't answer either of my questions...
                Sorry, you used question marks in your OP several times, but didn't actually use one on your 'first' question.

                1. To my knowledge, there's no studies done on the effects of swallowing the 'pulled' oil. I can't imagine that there is any possible upside to it though. You want those bacteria gone from your body.

                2. I think the 'dissolves in the oil' statement is hogwash. It's possible that the oil kills the bacteria though, and there are studies showing the efficacy of oil as an anti-bacterial agent.
                Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

                Griff's cholesterol primer
                5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
                Winterbike: What I eat every day is what other people eat to treat themselves.
                TQP: I find for me that nutrition is much more important than what I do in the gym.
                bloodorchid is always right

                Comment


                • #9
                  I've been doing it for a long while now (maybe 2 years), and it's quite an enjoyable time.

                  I do go to the dentist annually (and biannually for cleanings if I can afford biannual cleanings), and both the dentist and the hygienist tell me that my mouth is great -- very clean and so on.

                  I oil pull in the morning, followed by brushing with an ayurvedic toothpaste, then rinsing with water. In the evening, I floss, brush, and then saline rinse.

                  I think it makes my teeth whiter.

                  Edited to add -- I spit it out. I have no reason to beyond it being the traditional method.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    No good science behind it to my knowledge. Lots of good anecdotes. Can't see why it would hurt. Bacteria obviously don't dissolve, but your stomach is probably a better place for them than your gumline, but not as good as wherever you could spit them. Assuming they're suspended in the oil.
                    The Champagne of Beards

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                    • #11
                      Well, we know that the oil has anti-bacterial properties, so it probably does help to remove and/or kill them off somehow. Or decrease their numbers? IDK.

                      I just know that my dentist is amazed that my teeth are so awesome considering I only use "natural" methods beyond flossing (which is modern). Ayurvedic toothpaste and mouthwash is just crazy-talk, right?

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                      • #12
                        I don't know the actual science behind it - sorry, but I have accidentally swallowed the oil a few times and I'm not dead yet (despite the warning to never, ever under any circumstances swallow it).

                        My personal opinion is that a lot of the claims are bunk. I think the benefit comes from swishing a liquid through your mouth for 20 minutes - it's the mechanical action that cleans your teeth. I do continue to oil pull several times a week because it definitely does make my teeth feel cleaner.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Mamame View Post
                          I don't know the actual science behind it - sorry, but I have accidentally swallowed the oil a few times and I'm not dead yet (despite the warning to never, ever under any circumstances swallow it).
                          i don't see what harm it can do!?
                          The fat itself is obviously not harmful
                          The bacteria in your mouth are already in your body, the stomach is full of acid, no issue?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Greenbeast View Post
                            i don't see what harm it can do!?
                            The fat itself is obviously not harmful
                            The bacteria in your mouth are already in your body, the stomach is full of acid, no issue?
                            In my opinion, to say that there is no issue says that probiotics and fermented foods have no value.

                            If all bacteria dies because of acid in the stomach, what is the mechanism behind which probiotics work?

                            It is my opinion (admittedly humble however), that because bacteria have been found living on top of active volcanoes, at the bottom of the ocean under hundreds of pounds of pressure, in the coldest reaches of Antarctica, and there is even reason to believe that they may live in the arid, rainless environ of Mars, that a little stomach acid is nothing to resilient bacteria, whether good or bad.

                            Granted, I have no proof of this, I admit it! However, bacteria can adapt to thousand, if not millions, of different conditions. Therefore, I think that a small amount of time spent in our stomachs doesn't stop it.

                            Just because it doesn't KILL you (every regular oil puller has probably swallowed SOME small amount of oil) doesn't mean that it is advisable to do regularly. Things don't have to literally kill you to simply not be good for you.
                            "The cling and a clang is the metal in my head when I walk. I hear a sort of, this tinging noise - cling clang. The cling clang. So many things happen while walking. The metal in my head clangs and clings as I walk - freaks my balance out. So the natural thought is just clogged up. Totally clogged up. So we need to unplug these dams, and make the the natural flow... It sort of freaks me out. We need to unplug the dams. You cannot stop the natural flow of thought with a cling and a clang..."

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                            • #15
                              Anyone ever think that maybe teeth need bacteria too?

                              M.

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