Oil pulling is the simple act of swishing oil around the mouth. Along with brightening and whitening your teeth naturally, this practice brings benefits to the whole body including the immune system.
This ancient therapy has been around for thousands of years and has its roots in Ayurveda. I’ve been hooked on oil pulling for the last few years because I’ve noticed the benefits to my teeth and gums. My teeth look whiter and brighter, my gums no longer bleed when I eat spicy food or brush my teeth, and I notice the boost it gives my immune system.
Oil pulling is so effective at removing bad bacteria from our mouth because the coating on bacteria is attracted to the fat in the oil. When we oil pull we are literally removing or ‘pulling’ the disease causing bacteria from between the teeth, around the gums, from the roof of the mouth and under the tongue. By cleansing the mouth this way we are preventing oral bacteria seeping into the bloodstream and causing inflammation in the body.
Our bodies are constantly accumulating toxins. We live in a society that is becoming more and more polluted, through the air we breathe, chemicals in our foods, environmental pollutants and even in cosmetics. Oil pulling is a simple, natural and effective practice that reduces the toxic load on our bodies and doesn’t harm the environment.
To achieve the benefits of oil pulling you need to practice regularly, once a day is ideal. The recommended time to swish the oil around the mouth is 15-20min. The best time of day is in the morning, 15-20min may sound like a long time but you can use this time to take your shower or prepare for your day.
Traditionally sesame oil (a warming oil) is used but you can also use coconut oil (a cooling oil). Personally I prefer coconut oil because I like the taste. Buy a good quality unprocessed organic coconut oil so the nutrients remain in the oil. The other benefit of using coconut oil is that it contains lauric acid (a fatty acid), which is a proven antimicrobial; it can kill disease causing bacteria, viruses and fungi.
When you start oil pulling, remember it has a detoxifying effect; it is cleansing and can stimulate mucous flow. Sometimes when people start this practice their sinuses start running and flem in the throat may become thick because the mucous has been stimulated, this may cause them to gag. In the first few days you may need to spit after a few minutes and may need to build up to the suggested 15-20min.
Some of the benefits of oil pulling are…
- Your teeth will look brighter and whiter, no chemicals involved so good for your body and the planet.
- The oil removes harmful bacteria, viruses, debris and fungi from your mouth, this boosts the immune system.
- Can heal gingivitis
- Restores the gums, decreases any inflammation and bleeding gums as it is nourishing to mucous membranes.
Anyone can try oil pulling, here’s how you do it…
- The best time to try this is first thing in the morning.
- Take 1-2 Tablespoons of oil into your mouth and swish it around (you can melt it first if you prefer – melting point is approx. 24 degrees and above)
- Swish around for 15-20min.
- When you are finished spit it into the rubbish bin, not down the sink (you don’t want to clog your drains)
- You can then either rinse your mouth out with water or brush your teeth.
Oil pulling is an easy and inexpensive therapy, with great benefits for your body and no downside to the environment…what’s not to love?
Testimonial from Viva Vayspap
As I hit my Forties I noticed my gums had started to recede … had I became a little long in the tooth, perhaps? My Dentist explained that gingival recession was largely due to the onset of ‘middle age’ and, dare I say it, insufficient flossing.
After speaking with Justine, she recommended I swish a spoonful of organic coconut oil around my mouth every morning for twenty minutes.
After a few weeks of this I had an appointment with my Dental Hygienist, who I’ve been visiting regularly over the last five years.
She was astounded at the improvement and, unlike my previous visits, found no sign of plaque, inflammation or gingivitis at all!
When I told her about the coconut oil, and its natural ability to ‘pull bacterial’ by binding with it, she asked me to keep going as she has “never seen such a dramatic improvement in a patient’s mouth”.
Thank you Justine !