If you’ve been on Facebook at all recently, you have probably seen a lot of buzz about a practice called oil pulling. I was asked by several people in the last few weeks about it, so I figured it was probably post-worthy.
Oil pulling is actually a very old Ayurvedic practice, dating back thousands of years. In simplest terms, you take a small amount of oil (coconut is highly recommended, as it is a healthy choice) and you swish it around like any other mouth rinse. The tricky part is that many recommendations suggest doing this for upwards of 20 minutes. I gave it a shot and at about the 10 minute mark I was ready to quit but stuck it out for the full duration. I noticed no immediate difference, but advocates insist you need to make this a regular practice to see results.
What kind of results? The more realistic claims are improved oral health and a reduction in bacteria. Some of the more outlandish are “detoxification of the body” and curing a variety of ills. Some studies have been performed and showed that oil pulling did show an improvement in gingivitis and a reduction in oral bacteria, but did not perform better than a prescription oral rinse.
Overall, it’s not like any guru is asking you to give them money, so the risks are fairly low. Do be careful not to inhale the oil though, as lipid pneumonia could result. I definitely do not make any promises this is going to do anything for you, but as I’ve said before — placebo is a powerful drug. If you’ve been tempted to try oil pulling as a result of hearing that some random celebrity endorses it, there’s little downside …other than wasting good coconut oil.
Further reading: Swishing With Oil for Oral Health: Not Recommended from The Atlantic
Back Squat 3×5 or Wendler
3 minute stations
One partner works while other rests, but all reps are alternating — including box jumps and wallballs