What is oil pulling?
Oil pulling is an age-old folk remedy used to clean, detoxify and whiten teeth. It’s a very basic practice where oil is swished or “held” in the mouth for a period of time. Doing this will improve gum health, remove natural substances, and help dissolve plaque while also removing toxins from teeth and gums. Have you ever heard of “like dissolves like”? This is the same principle.
Here’s what wikipedia has to say: “Practitioners of oil pulling claim it is capable of improving oral and systemic health, including a benefit in conditions such as headaches, migraines, diabetes mellitus, asthma, and acne, as well as whitening teeth. Its promoters claim it works by “pulling out” toxins, which are known as ama in Ayurvedic medicine, and thereby reducing inflammation.” Look for yourself at the many online testimonials from people who experience help with liver problems, infections, hormone issues, constipation, hypertension, eczema, chronic fatigue and infections. Oil pulling has also been noted to help soothe sore throats, clear sinuses, improve sleep, help with teeth sensitivity and pain, heal bleeding gums and cracked lips.
How to oil pull?
- Place a small amount of oil in mouth. (about a teaspoon). I use organic coconut oil because it is antibacterial by property and a much milder tasting oil, but olive or sesame oil can be used as well. Swish, without swallowing, for 20 min. (For those of you with a strong gag reflex, 5 minute intervals may be best until you can build to the full 20 minutes) Apparently time is key. Twenty minutes gives the oil time to break down plaque, but not enough time for the body to re-absorb the toxins and bacteria.
- Spit into trash can, so as not to clog septic systems.
- Rinse mouth with warm water to remove remaining oil.
- Brush teeth as usual.
I really thought this whole idea was hokey until I started practicing it. I have personally noticed that my teeth feel so much better, and I’m guessing it’s because I don’t get the plaque build-up like I used to. I’ve also noticed that my breath stays fresher, longer. It’s hard to say what has helped me the most with arthritis pain, eliminating gluten or oil pulling. It’s possibly the combination. I’m finding that natural remedies help the most, without the side effects of medication. I’m not against medication when absolutely necessary, but I would rather do my homework and self correct with dietary changes and natural remedies first.
If you would like more information in book form, “Oil Pulling Therapy”, by Dr. Bruce Fife would be my personal recommendation.
What are your experiences? Please share below.