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Thread: Oil Pulling - help with the science page

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    dislegal's Avatar
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    Post Oil Pulling - help with the science

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    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?

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    MEversbergII's Avatar
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    There isn't any science.

    M.

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    dislegal's Avatar
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    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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    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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    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
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    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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    Quote 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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    miata's Avatar
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    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.

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    Quote 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

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    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.

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    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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