a few weeks ago I began oil pulling. a friend of mine had told me about this and after doing some further research I decided to give it a try. I made 2 batches, one with spearmint and coconut oil and the other with peppermint, tea tree oil and coconut oil. both taste pretty good, i was a bit weirded out at first; having to put coconut oil in my mouth. i was honestly worried i'd swallow it, which is pretty silly because i'm in control of that. anyways, while it can be daunting at first (as are new routines) i totally recommend this for our self-care focus this month. let me give you some background on this and explain it's benefits a bit more.
oil pulling is an Ayurveda method. Ayurveda is a holistic system of medicine that was formed around 3,000 to 5,000 years ago. as you can see in the graphic above it has some pretty great benefits. here's a brief rundown of how to do it: oil pulling involves placing a tablespoon of extra virgin organic cold pressed oil (I use coconut oil, but sesame or olive oil is fine too) into your mouth and then swishing it around for up to 20 minutes, minimum 5 minutes (pulling it between your teeth), before spitting it out. yes, 20 minutes is a lot but 5 minutes is more reasonable for some folk. my kids actually think it's funny because I can't talk to them while oil pulling and we make a little game out of it. when I first started pulling I honestly didn't think I had time to do it, but as you do with all new habits, you just go for it and make time daily.
please, DO NOT swallow the oil as you will ingest the toxins you are trying to wipe out. Afterwards requires brushing your teeth with an all-natural fluoride-free toothpaste, and rinsing your mouth out. And you’re done! It really is that easy.
studies on oil pulling
- a 2009 study published in the Indian Journal of Dental Research found that when compared with mouthwash, swishing with sesame oil reduced plaque, modified gingival scores, and lowered microorganisms in the plaque of adolescents with plaque-induced gingivitis.
- a 2014 study published in the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research found that oil pulling with sesame oil helped in reducing oral malodor and the microbes causing it just as much as using a chlorhexidine treatment.
- a 2011 study published in the Journal of the Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry found oil pulling to be as effective as chlorhexidine in the treatment of bad breath.