Oil pulling: What is it, and what's all the hype about? - New York News

Oil pulling: What is it, and what's all the hype about?

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WJBK - How does taking a spoonful of oil and gargling with it sound?

It's an ancient, holistic cleansing method that's getting renewed attention thanks to celebrities. But does it really work?

Rachel Levich of Ferndale brushes her teeth like the rest of us, but her oral hygiene routine also includes cocoanut oil. She digs out a spoonful and swishes it for several minutes. She says her teeth feel sleek and smooth immediately after, and can see her gums looking a little pinker than before.  
FOX 2's Deena Centofanti went to a holistic health coach, Lisa Cohen, to try the routine.

Cohen believes in the benefits, saying "it pulls the toxins - things like bacteria and fungus that are inside your mouth - and these things cause gingivitis, inflammation."
Lisa prefers to use sesame oil, uses about two to three tablespoons and swishes for 10 - 15 minutes.

Dr. Sanja Chand at the U of D School of Dentistry says, right now, not enough studies have been done in favor of or against oil pulling. He says he does, however, recognize the potential benefit.
"The way it's swished around is that it undergoes a process called soponification, which is the formation of soap. And you know that soap cleans. So the process behind it is the fact that this oil may clean the oral cavity, clean the mouth, and prevent the development of plaque," Chand explains.  

Everyone agrees oil pulling is not a replacement for brushing, and there's no solid proof it will whiten your teeth, but after her quick try, Deena says she did feel a difference. She adds the taste wasn't bad, but swishing for several minutes got tedious.  

As of now, experts haven't discovered any negative results of oil pulling.

Chand believes, though, if you gargle with mouthwash or even water for 15 minutes, you'll get similar results.

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