What is Oil Pulling? (and yes, you should do it!)

Up until a few weeks ago I didn’t have any idea what the heck “oil pulling” was.  Some of you may have been reading the latest buzz, while some of you still have no clue what the heck I’m talking about.

I first read about it in this blog post: WTF is Oil Pulling + Why I’m Hooked

After reading the aforementioned post, I did some google searches and read lots and lots more.  I’ll get into the benefits in a minute, but let’s just say I got to oil pulling right away and have been doing it daily ever since.  In fact, I’m doing it at this very moment!

Let’s cover the basics…

Oil Pulling: What the heck is it + how it works

  • It comes from an Ayurvedic  medicine, dating back thousands of years; it was believed to cure diabetes, high blood pressure, etc AND improve oral health by using oil to pull bacteria, fungus and other toxins from the mouth and throat
  • By swishing the oil in your mouth and between the teeth, the oil mixes with saliva, detoxifying and degerming along the way
  • Endless benefits (see below)
  • It’s easy (“how to” below)

The Benefits:

There are lots and lots of them, but here are some of the more prevalent ones I read about…

  • Seriously a ridic amount of oral health benefits, including: whiter teeth; healthier gums; prevents cavities and gingivitis; can get rid of halitosis (bye-bye bad breath!)
  • Helps with migraines
  • Helps with TMJ (can help reduce jaw pain holistically)
  • Clears sinuses
  • Can help clear skin
  • Also has been shown to help with asthma, fatigue, diabetes and PMS

Now that you’ve read some of the possible benefits, I know you’re just dying to know how to get started…

What to do:
  • Take anywhere from 1 tsp to 1 tbsp of extra virgin organic coconut oil (or sesame or olive oil – just be sure it’s an organic plant-based oil) and put it in your mouth
  • Swish for up to 20 minutes making sure to swish between the teeth
  • DO NOT SWALLOW – it’s loaded with toxins, germs and the like
  • Spit it out into the trash – don’t get lazy and spit it down the sink unless you want issues with your pipes down the road
  • Do a quick mouth rinse with some warm water (if in the morning, you can then proceed to brush your teeth)
  • BOOM
1 tsp of coconut oil is all it takes!

1 tsp of coconut oil is all it takes!

Gotta go rinse…

Personal Takeaways + Tips

  • I’m obsessed with coconut oil so that’s the one I’ve been using and recommending to everyone I’ve been telling about this whole oil pulling thing – here’s an oldie but goodie post on why I’m Cuckoo for Coconut Oil if you’d like to read up
  • I have to say I’ve noticed whiter teeth and fresher breath in the mere two and a half weeks or so since I’ve started – plus less plaque
  • Clearer sinuses (yay!)
  • I try to do it first thing in the morning – work it into your daily routine (it takes 21 days to form a habit so try it for a few weeks and see if it sticks)
  • Start with 1 tsp and work your way up to 1 tbsp
  • Don’t worry if you can’t do the full 20 minutes at first, it’s okay if you only get to 10 and gradually work your way up
  • Setting a timer helps – I oil pull in the shower if I’m in a hurry, while I’m checking e-mails – even blogging!
  • I’m starting to enjoy it – who doesn’t want an all natural way to improve, at the very least, their oral health?!

My dad also just started doing it yesterday; so far so good!

If you don’t already have coconut oil at home, go out and buy it – it’s not only great for this, but a myriad of other all natural diy beauty routines (some of which will be coming up on the blog.  get excited!).

Have you tried oil pulling?  If so, would love your thoughts below!

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2 thoughts on “What is Oil Pulling? (and yes, you should do it!)

  1. I’m glad you found success with this, but I found oil pulling to be 100% ineffective for anything, including oral health. Furthermore, there is no actual scientific way in which swishing oil in your mouth can make toxins “stick” to it from other parts of your body. And it cannot in any way clear your skin through your mouth, nor will it relieve your migraines (tried and tried, unfortunately with no success).

    That said, it was good for my lips, but other than that I found no success with it after two months of consistent trial (20 minutes daily, organic coconut oil). Just a warning to anyone else. That said, it would be good to give it a try, but take the ‘miraculous’ results with a grain of salt.

    • Natalie – thanks for checking out the blog! All of the benefits should be taken with a great of salt, for sure. However, like you mentioned, I do think it’s worth a try – especially for those that want to add an all-natural option to their daily oral health routine!

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