Category Archives: Ingredients

What is Oil Pulling?

I’m sure you’ve all heard about oil pulling. It has become fairly popular in recent years, but not everyone knows what oil pulling is, and why it can be so beneficial to your health. Here’s the scoop on oil pulling:

What is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling is an ancient folk health remedy that has you swish or hold oil in your mouth for a short period of time (from what I’ve seen 15-20 minutes is the norm) which “pulls out” oral germs, bacteria and other toxins that you then expel from your body when you spit out the oil.

The Science Behind Oil Pulling
Oil pulling originates from Ayurveda, a holistic system of traditional medicine native to the Indian subcontinent and can be traced as far back as 5,000 BCE. They described an oil swishing which was called ‘Kavala gandusha’. They used this method as a way to detoxify the body and alleviate, and heal a multitude of diseases.[5] According to this traditional medicine oil pulling can be used to cure not only oral health but problems with overall health as well. According to Ayurveda, oil pulling is believed to be able to “cure around 30 systematic diseases ranging from headache, migraine to diabetes and asthma.”[1] Oil pulling has traditionally been used as preventative as well as curative, through the use of different gargling techniques and blends of oils and herbs . [2] Oil pulling has recently become very popular although most people are unaware of it’s origin as a traditional holistic treatment.

How to Oil Pull
Oil pulling is pretty simple. You just take a spoon full of a high quality, unrefined plant oil such as sesame oil, sunflower oil or coconut oil. I’ve found that most people opt for coconut or sesame oil. You put it in your mouth and start swooshing it around as you would normal mouthwash. Be sure to pull it between your teeth! You do this swooshing for 15-20 minutes and then you SPIT IT OUT. This is the most important step. DO NOT swallow the oil. The point is to expel all of the bacteria and toxins. If you swallow you’re just reentering the toxins back into your body with needless calories.

What are the benefits?
Although opinions are mixed on whether or not oil pulling actually offers any health benefits, people who use the oil pulling method swear by it. Oil pulling has been said to offer the following benefits:

1. Reduces germs that cause plaque and gingivitis and tooth decay
One study[3] showed that oil pulling is effective in reducing an oral bacteria known as Streptococcus mutans which is a major cause of tooth decay and a bacteria that promotes the growth of plaque. This may be the reason that many people who swear by oil pulling say that they experience less plaque, gingivitis and have an overall healthier mouth after oil pulling.

2. Whitens teeth
Although there is no scientific evidence to back this claim up, just a simple Google image search will amaze you with the many people who experienced whiter, brighter teeth after adding oil pulling to their daily regimen. While you may not experience the same results, for those of you who enjoy a cup of coffee in the mornings, the oil may protect you from developing any further stains. So that’s a win in my book!

3. Reduces bad breath
I’m not really sure how people have measured this, but in doing my research nearly every person I’ve seen who swears by this method says that it helps with their bad breath and/or to get rid of morning breath. There are antimicrobial properties in oils such as coconut oil [4], which may be the reason that these bad breath causing germs are reduced after oil pulling.

4. Detoxifying
This seems to be the most controversial of the claims. People who use the oil pulling method say that the detoxification has helped them clear eczema, clear acne, given them more energy, cure insomnia, and helped cure cold symptoms. These claims have been heavily disputed by some, and said to be a placebo effect by others, but nearly everyone agrees that oil pulling isn’t harmful so if you get results similar to the ones people have claimed then great, and if you don’t, no harm done. A win-win, and a reason for everyone to at least try it out and see if it works for you.

5. Bonus...It apparently is an effective hangover cure!
 From what I saw, the effectiveness of this hangover cure ranged from having the duration of a hangover "shortened" [6] to feeling "leagues better" [7] after just 10 minutes of oil pulling, and a lot of other varying results in between. So the next time you have a hangover instead of adding more toxins to your body using the "hair of the dog" method or loading up on aspirin try to oil pull and just maybe you will experience the natural hangover remedy you've always been looking for.

References:
1. Singh, Abhinav, and Bharathi Purohit. “Tooth Brushing, Oil Pulling and Tissue Regeneration: A Review of Holistic Approaches to Oral Health.” Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine 2.2 (2011): 64–68. PMC. Web. 20 Jan. 2015. Available from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3131773/

2. “Drsonicakrishan: Oil Pulling : Best Ayurvedic Treatment Guide for Oral Health & Detoxification.” Drsonicakrishan: Oil Pulling : Best Ayurvedic Treatment Guide for Oral Health & Detoxification. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Jan. 2015. Available from: http://drsonicakrishan.blogspot.com/2014/05/oil-pulling-best-ayurvedic-treatment.html

3. Asokan S, Rathan J, Muthu M S, Rathna PV, Emmadi P, Raghuraman, Chamundeswari. Effect of oil pulling on Streptococcus mutans count in plaque and saliva using Dentocult SM Strip mutans test: A randomized, controlled, triple-blind study. J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent [serial online] 2008 [cited 2015 Jan 19];26:12-7. Available from: http://www.jisppd.com/text.asp?2008/26/1/12/40315

4. “Kent State University.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. 19 Jan. 2015. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24328700>.

5. “The Beauty of Simple Aryuvedic Practices to Enhance Your Vitality (ojas) and to Serve as Steps to Aging with Grace and Beauty.” East West Aroma School. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Jan. 2015.

6. Sinks, Tynan. I Tried Oil Pulling Because I Was Sick Of Hearing Everyone Else Talk About It. Http://www.xojane.com/, 24 Apr. 2014. Web. 19 Jan. 2015.

7. “HANGOVER CURES.” BeWellRun. N.p., 28 Oct. 2013. Web. 19 Jan. 2015.

 

Written by Nicolle Chase
SALVE and SalveNaturals.com © 2015 All Rights Reserved

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Homemade toothpaste using ingredients that are actually good for oral health

If you haven’t seen the SALVE recipe yet for homemade toothpaste, you can find it here.

Why homemade toothpaste?
You may be wondering, with so may options for toothpaste on the market, what’s the point of making my own? Well there are three major reasons.

  1. Most toothpastes on the market are loaded with harmful chemicals and fillers that are cheap, arguably harmful to your health, and contain unnatural ingredients which have been linked to an array of health problems. And because you are presumably brushing your teeth at least two times a day, you are ingesting these toxins twice a day everyday which can be harmful to your overall health.Natural is the way to go. While you can find natural toothpastes on the market today often they are more expensive and come in a smaller tube than your average toothpaste which brings me to the second reason you should be making your own toothpaste.
  2. It is more cost effective. Plus natural toothpaste uses products that you probably already have in your kitchen.
  3. Homemade toothpaste can be customized to your liking. You can use our recipe as a base, add ingredients and take out ingredients.

So why did we choose these ingredients?
We put a lot of thought into our choice of ingredients and used products that have all been shown to be helpful for oral care, so let’s break it down:

First: Coconut oil
Coconut oil has antimicrobial properties, which can kill the bacteria in your mouth that cause bad breath and lead to tooth decay. Also the oil will leave your teeth feeling nice and polished with a protective layer from coffee tea and any other teeth staining food and drinks. [1]

Second: Baking Soda
Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) much like coconut oil has so many natural uses and is handy to keep around the house because you can pretty much always find a use for it. But it also has many benefits when it comes to the health of your teeth. As you may know baking soda is an effective tooth whitener, you can even use it alone, by dissolving it in warm water and brushing. It also is effective in the fight against plaque which can lead to tooth decay. [2]

Third: Peppermint oil
Peppermint oil has so many natural benefits and it is also one of the best essential oils for oral health. It has antiseptic properties, can protect against tooth decay and gum health and been shown to inhibit the growth of cavities. It has also widely been used to fight bad breath, and who doesn’t love that fresh mint feeling after your brush?

Fourth: Neem OIl
Let me start this section by stating that neem oil is a very powerful medicinal oil. Neem oil when used properly is a great way to prevent plaque, gingivitis and gum disease. Not only that but one study showed that a neem based mouth rinse was just as effective as your traditional mouthwash in its antigingivitis and antiplaque properties but it also had fewer side effects than traditional mouthwash! [3] Neem oil should also NOT be ingested. You can get neem oil online from SALVE [all natural and organic skin care].

Fifth: Xylitol (optional)
Some people may need to add a little sweetness to their toothpaste, and for that reason we added the optional sweetener xylitol to our recipe. Xylitol is a natural sweetener, but it has been shown to repair damaged enamel, and is effective in the fight against cavities by reducing cavity causing bacteria.[4]

While we used these ingredients for our version of natural toothpaste there are also many other natural ingredients that have benefits for your oral health that you can use to make this recipe your own.

References:

1. “Result Filters.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. 19 Jan. 2015. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24328700>.

2. “Rahbar Dentistry: Dental Matters That Really Matter.” Benefits of Brushing Your Teeth with Baking Soda. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Jan. 2015. <http://rahbardentistry.blogspot.com/2011/09/benefits-of-brushing-your-teeth-with.html>.

3. Chatterjee, Anirban et al. “To Evaluate the Antigingivitis and Antipalque Effect of an Azadirachta Indica (neem) Mouthrinse on Plaque Induced Gingivitis: A

Double-Blind, Randomized, Controlled Trial.” Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology 15.4 (2011): 398–401. PMC. Web. 20 Jan. 2015.

4. Pierini, Carolyn. “Xylitol: A Sweet Alternative.” Unique Sweetener Supports Oral Health (n.d.): n. pag. Www.iprogressivemed.com. The Institute for Progressive Medicine. Web. <www.iprogressivemed.com/misc/xylitol_a_sweet_alternative.pdf>.

Written by Nicolle Chase
SALVE and SalveNaturals.com © 2015 All Rights Reserved

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Nicolle’s Top 5 Essential Oils and their Lesser-Known Uses

SALVE Essential Oil Roll-Ons
Essential oils provide us with amazing, natural fragrances; but these oils have many other uses as well. They can help with everything from dry skin to insomnia. So I’ve decided to create a list of my top five favorite essential oils and their lesser known uses.

What are essential oils?
Essential oils are defined as a natural oil typically obtained by distillation and having the characteristic fragrance of the plant. Basically, it’s an oil that is derived from a plant, that still carries the essence of the plant with it, including the fragrance and it’s natural uses for a healthier body. Some essential oils can be used directly on the skin, while others cannot and certain essential oils should be avoided while pregnant. (See our previous blog post on essential oils to avoid while pregnant and breastfeeding.)

Why use essential Oils?
Essential oils have been used for hundreds of years as treatments for ailments and for their often therapeutic properties. There are so many essential oils available, each with different properties that can be used as natural remedies in lieu of traditional, chemical filled products.

5. Peppermint oil SALVE's Peppermint Essential Oil Roll-On
Peppermint oil is a very popular essential oil that is commonly used to ease headaches and migraines and clear congestion, however this oil is great for getting rid of an even bigger annoyance than those….Ants!

With the colder, wetter weather come the ants and unlike most humans, ants hate peppermint oil. A few drops of peppermint oil where you normally find ants, and you’ve got yourself a safe and natural way to get rid of ants without the harsh chemicals in your typical bug spray. A quick disclaimer on peppermint oil: Much like the ant’s, I am one of the unlucky few who has a sensitivity to peppermint oil, and can’t use it on my skin(although sometimes I still do and regret it later. It smells delicious.) When I use peppermint oil I get a burning sensation, and sometimes even a rash so I try to stay away from putting it on my skin. This, however is not typical of most people, but because it is one of the stronger more concentrated oils those with sensitive skin should be careful.

4. Rose Oil SALVE's Rose Essential Therapy Roll-On
Rose oil is one of the essential oils that most people only associate with it’s use as a fragrance, it is used aromatherapy for it’s ability to relieve stress and promote happiness, but Rose oil has many other uses as well. It is a great way to treat acne. Rose oil has antiseptic and astringent properties which helps to kill the bacteria that causes acne. Don’t be fooled into thinking rose oil is just for smell. It has many other practical uses.

3. Lemongrass OilSALVE's Lemongrass Essential Oil Roll-on
Lemongrass oil is not only great as a perfume (a bit sweeter than lemon oil) it is also used as a natural remedy for a myriad of different ailments including high blood pressure, and depression. What you may not know is that Lemongrass oil is also a natural way to help reduce cellulite and varicose veins.

2. Tea Tree OilSALVE Tea Tree Oil
The first product I ever saw with tea tree oil in it was an acne face wash, and many of you have probably heard of its ability to help treat acne, and fade acne scars but maybe you didn’t know that using this essential oil on your pets can help protect them against fleas and ticks and even remove ticks once your pet has already caught them. Even better, this essential oil can be used to treat head lice, and if you have kids or are regularly around school age children, keeping this essential oil handy might just save you from that itchy scalp.

1. Lavender OilLavender-Essential-Roll-o_41
Not only is Lavender one of my favorite flowers, fragrances, and flavors (If you’ve never had lavender ice cream you are truly missing out. Trust me on this.) Lavender oil is also one of the most versatile essential oils around. As most people know, Lavender oil can be used for it’s relaxing properties, to help calm, or even aid in treating insomnia; but, it can also be used as an insect repellant. For those of you that seem to always have insect or mosquito bites and prefer not to use bug sprays that are loaded with harmful chemicals, Lavender oil might just be the perfect natural repellant for you. While I have come across a few different recipes for insect repellant using lavender oil, I’d opt for just a simple dab of Lavender oil to your pulse points. Extra Tip: If you already have those annoying, itch bug bites, Lavender oil also works great to soothe the itchiness and speed the healing process.

SALVE’s Essential Oils
Salve Naturals carries all of the essential oils mentioned above and many more. Tell us what your favorite essential oil is and your favorite use for it.

We’re in the process of developing some safe products for baby care. Stay tuned!

Check out our related articles:
Essential Oils to Avoid While Pregnant & Breastfeeding
How Substances Enter Your Body
How we Accumulate Toxins in our Bodies

Written by Nicolle Chase
SALVE and SalveNaturals.com © 2015 All Rights Reserved

 

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Clove Essential Oil

What are essential oils?
Essential oils are defined as a natural oil typically obtained by distillation and having the characteristic fragrance of the plant. Basically, it’s an oil that is derived from a plant, that still carries the essence of the plant with it, including the fragrance and it’s natural uses for a healthier body. Some essential oils can be used directly on the skin, while others cannot and certain essential oils should be avoided while pregnant. (See our previous blog post on essential oils to avoid while pregnant and breastfeeding.)

Clove essential Oil
Clove essential oil is usually extracted from the buds of the Eugenia caryophyllata (clove) plant. It has a beautiful woody aroma with a bit of a fruity undertone. Clove has traditionally been used in India and China for its medicinal properties, and even as a spice in some of their traditional dishes. In researching for this blog article, I was able to read many anecdotal accounts of how clove oil has helped people with their medical and physical needs. One of the most interesting, was an account of how clove oil helped with one girls hypothyroidism. She used clove oil topically over her thyroid and it helped to stimulate her thyroid, aiding in treating her thyroid issue. While her results may not be true for everyone, I found it to be an interesting insight into just how powerful natural remedies can be!

Health Benefits of Clove Essential Oil
Clove essential oil is known for its many medicinal uses. This oil is antiseptic, which is useful for using on small wounds but it also can be used on fungal infections such as athlete’s foot and scabies. It has also been known to treat those annoying infections of the eye known as a sty. Clove oil is also widely known for its uses as an aid to a healthy immune system. It has antiviral properties that help to strengthen the immune system, which is a welcome trait with flu season just around the corner. It also works remarkably well as a dental aid. It can help to freshen breath, kills bacteria in the mouth, provide a defense against cavities, and provide relief to your tooth aches. Clove essential oil is also used in aromatherapy and is known as an effective way to reduce headaches.

Other Benefits of Clove Essential Oil
Clove essential oil can be used to discourage your pets from chewing on your furniture, a safe and natural alternative to the sprays you find in your local supermarkets!

Not all essential oils are safe for everyone; Who should beware of using Clove? Clove oil is a very strong oil and should always be used in a diluted form. If you are a person, like me, who has sensitive skin, you may want to avoid applying clove oil directly to your skin as it can irritate sensitive skin. However, you may still be able to use it in different ways, such an inhaling, to provide relief to certain repertory conditions. Additionally, it is not recommended that you ingest clove oil, in most cases (it is generally safe to use in the mouth as dental care). Instead stick to topical and aromatic methods.

What Can I Use Instead?
We recommend trying patchouli essential oil instead. If you have sensitive skin or are avoiding clove oil because you are pregnant or breastfeeding patchouli oil has some of the same uses such as treatment for athlete foot and it’s antiseptic properties, but it is a much more mild oil.
Check out our related articles:
Essential Oils to Avoid While Pregnant & Breastfeeding
How Substances Enter Your Body
How we Accumulate Toxins in our Bodies

Written by Nicolle Chase
SALVE and SalveNaturals.com © 2015 All Rights Reserved

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