So a post from FashionLush received a lot of attention on social media this past week. Erica wrote about this new, trendy cleansing act called Oil Pulling. Sounds gross right? Except she’s obsessed with it(her words, not mine).
I semi-joked with my brother’s girlfriend, Becca, that I was going to try it. I’ve got the coconut oil and since it sounds super gross I decided, “Why not?”
What was I going to do, DIE?
Nope, I just checked and I’m still here. Alive & well.
I’ve read on Oil Pulling before and am slightly intrigued by the idea yet mostly grossed out, especially from the name. It just sounds … wrong. Like, what are you pulling? Well, to be honest, you’re pulling the oil through your teeth and around your tongue and along your gums.
But really, how did I like it?
Well, I’ve only given this a try once. And I was a little wary as I have a canker sore in a mouth crevice that’s been killing me all week.
I woke up this AM and without brushing my teeth first (which is an immediate action), I took about 3/4 of a tablespoon of Organic Coconut Oil (not melted) into my mouth and set my timer for 20 minutes.
At first the texture was definitely weird but after a few swishes the Coconut Oil liquefied and was much easier to deal with.
I swished it back and forth, through my teeth, along my tongue. I had a hard time keeping it in my mouth for 20 minutes as it was more distracting to me than therapeutic. I like doing a lot in the morning so it was an inconvenience to have my mouth multi-tasking, but that’s probably the reason why it’s therapeutic. It kind of gives you those 20 minutes of peace and silence and I definitely was more efficient getting ready in the morning because I was concentrating harder.
It wasn’t a bad feeling but it wasn’t a good feeling having to swish oil around in my mouth. After 20 minutes I spit it in the toilet (otherwise it would harden my pipe), washed my mouth with water and brushed my teeth (FINALLY!)
Onto some history & insight … Oil Pulling is an ancient Ayurveda holistic practice of medicine. Originated in India a long time ago, the practice was used for oral and other various health benefits. It’s been claimed to cure 30 “systemic” diseases including migraines, diabetes and asthma. In addition to problematic oral issues like bleeding gums, cracked lips and strengthening weak gums, teeth and jaw.
The short-term benefits of Oil Pulling are mainly cleansing. The oil’s stickiness cleans the mouth and oral cavities of all the bad bacteria and toxis.
People have also reported the act of Oil Pulling as therapeutic, relaxing and a natural teeth whitener!
For this practice you can use organic coconut oil, sesame oil or sunflower oil.
Take a tablespoon of the oil and put it right into your mouth. Swish it around, pull it through your teeth, along your gums and tongue. Do not swallow it as it’s grabbing all those gross, bad bacteria.
After 20 minutes, spit the oil out into a baggy or toilet. Not your faucet as it may harden or gunk up the pipe.
Rinse your mouth with warm water and brush your teeth.
Bizarre or Brilliant?
Bizarre? Most def. Brilliant? Not sure.
I’m not a fan of mouthwash so this is certainly a more natural and less pungent way to orally cleanse. After one try I can’t speculate whether it’s brilliant or not. Coconut Oil has so many other health and beauty benefits and uses that I don’t doubt it can’t bring some goodness to our mouthcare routine.
I had a difficult time keeping it in my mouth for 20 minutes. Ten minutes would be much better. It also screws up my morning routine which throws me off since I thrive on routine. Not to say I can’t, and maybe should, make it a part of my routine.
I may have noticed my teeth looking a little whiter but I often randomly think they look whiter. I didn’t notice too much of a remedy for my canker sore. It’s getting a little better anyway but I couldn’t help but hope the oil would relieve it 100%. Wishful thinking!
The verdict is it’s really not that bad. Give it a try. Maybe I’ll try it consecutively for a few days and see if I notice any changes.
Full-time Oil Pullers
Some of these people have been doing oil pulling for a while. It’s cool to read about their experiences!
Oil Pulling skeptic: Skeptoid
I want to hear from you!
What are your thoughts on Oil Pulling? Have you ever done it?
Have you ever used coconut Oil for things other than cooking?