The use of coconut oil for nutritional purposes is not a new phenomenon, but a recent wave of interest in coconut oil pulling has reached mainstream popularity. With all the discussion on the web, and added promotion by celebrities, it is easy to see why this topic might be of interest to you!
Oil pulling is a 20-minute procedure involving the gentle oral swishing of liquefied coconut oil. This procedure is normally done first thing in the morning. You measure one tablespoon of oil, swishing it around in your mouth for 15–20 minutes, being careful not to swallow any. You then spit the oil into a trash can once you're done.
Alleged benefits include:
Improved gum health
Lower oral bacterial
Viral and fungal counts
Oil pulling is attracting a lot attention, regardless of the lack of long-term evidence from scientific studies. Reports from respected research institutions all question the validity of health benefit claims derived from coconut oil pulling. However, these reports do not denounce or caution against coconut oil use. They state more long-term research is required before a conclusion can be reached.
Most Canadian trained dentists are somewhat reluctant to give patients advice about whether oil pulling might be beneficial to their oral health. The majority have little to no training in Ayurvedic medicine, and the topic has yet to be incorporated into North American dental school programs.
Those who do promote oil pulling as beneficial to oral health, do not advocate coconut oil as an alternative to brushing and flossing. In fact, supporters of coconut oil pulling recommend that oil pulling be followed by salt water rinsing, brushing and flossing.
In conclusion if you do decide to give oil pulling a try, remember to follow it with brushing and flossing. Oil pulling takes 20 minutes, we are sure that you can find 2 minutes for flossing right after! :)
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