Oil pulling is an ancient technique that's been around since the beginning of time. It's making a comeback on YouTube. Thousands of people are posting videos of themselves oil pulling; swooshing unrefined oils in their mouths.
At Natural Frontier Market on the Upper East Side, store manager Pasang Sheroa has people coming in asking for shots of coconut oil, sunflower oil, and extra virgin olive oil.
One teaspoon to one tablespoon of unrefined oil for 5 to 20 minutes can help whiten teeth and prevent cavities. So I had to give it a try. I swished and swished some more. Front to back, side to side. The oil felt a little thick going through my teeth but I hung in there for about 3 minutes. So there's no way I could do that for 20 minutes but I have to say the after taste isn't all that bad. One really important thing, you have to make sure you spit this out. If you don't you'll be ingesting all of the toxins you works so hard to get out of your body.
"Rinse with salt water and brush your teeth like normal," said MaryRuth Ghiyam, a nutritional consultant. She said pulling can actually help those with systematic disease like diabetes and asthma.
"Oil is sticky so that be bacteria that was awakened while you're sleeping sticks to the oil in your mouth or you remove the oil it goes with it," she said.
Dr. Frederick Stange has patients following the trend and says it can improve oral health but shouldn't replace more traditional techniques.
"It should not replace brushing because the bacteria that sits on the teeth needs to be physically removed," he said.
So it's safe to add the oil swishing technique to your regular brushing routine as needed and no more than once a day.