As a leading integrative dentist, Dr. Mark Burhenne understands the importance of oral health for total wellness. That's why we're thrilled to have him as a mindbodygreen contributor and share his expertise on the latest in oral health.
Oil pulling is everywhere! Even though it's a 3,000-year-old technique taken from the ancient tradition of Ayurvedic medicine, you've probably noticed that it's become a huge trend lately, touted by practically every celebrity on Instagram.
What is it exactly? Oil pulling is swishing with coconut, sesame, or sunflower oil for about 20 minutes and then spitting it out. What does it do? The Internet is full of lofty claims about how it can do everything from detox your body to cure eczema and arthritis.
But as a dentist, do I think it's as good for you as everyone says? No — but I do think there can be some benefit to it.
Based on the scientific literature as well as my own personal experience, here are eight important things you need to know before trying oil pulling for yourself: