Got Plaque? Want to Detox? Try Oil Pulling! (It's Not as Crazy as it Sounds)

What is oil pulling? In a society riddled with complicated, expensive and even dangerous detoxification methods, oil pulling offers a technique that is refreshingly simple. Oil pulling therapy is a practice taken from Ayurvedic medicine that involves swishing, or pulling, unrefined oil in your mouth for several minutes. The modern adaptation of oil pulling has only recently become popular in Western society, but already many are reporting amazing results from this unorthodox therapy. (Read about my results at the end of the post!)

What are the Benefits of Oil Pulling?

The alleged benefits of oil pulling cover everything from curing gingivitis to facilitating weight loss. Some users even report a decrease in gray hair! Other users note:

- Whiter, straighter teeth

- Healthy, pink gums

- Increased energy

- Decreased migraine headaches

- Clear sinuses

- Less severe asthma

- Decreased allergies

- Improved PMS symptoms

- Regulated menstrual cycles

- Better sleep

- Clear skin

Overall, oil pulling is known as a powerful method of detoxifying the body. Coconut oil expert Dr. Bruce Fife, author of Oil Pulling Therapy, says “Oil pulling is one of the most remarkable methods of detoxification and healing I have ever experienced in my career as a naturopathic physician.”

What is Oil Pulling? How Reap the Benefits of Oil Pulling

Traditionally unrefined sunflower or sesame oil was used for oil pulling, but today many other oils are used as well. Unrefined olive or coconut oil come highly recommended if you don’t want to use the traditional oils. Find quality sources of oil in the marketplace here.

- Ideally oil pulling should be done first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.

- About one tablespoon on oil should be used. You can start with less, though.

- A couple drops of essential oil or a healing oil like oregano (which might be good for thrush) can be added if desired.

- Swish the oil slowly and methodically, not vigorously.

- Try to make sure the oil reaches every region of your mouth.

- Be careful not to swallow the oil.

- Continue swishing the oil for at least 10 minutes, preferably more like 20 minutes.

- The oil will become very thin and foamy as you swish.

- Spit the oil out and rinse your mouth thoroughly with pure water.

- Brush with a natural toothpaste afterwards.

Oil pulling can be done as often as you like. Daily sessions are recommended if you have specific health problems you are trying to address with oil pulling. This traditional practice is also an excellent measure to add to your daily routine to facilitate detoxification and overall health.

My Oil Pulling Benefits Testimonial

I discovered oil pulling therapy last year and decided to try it for fun. I used coconut oil since that's what I had around at the time. I didn't notice any astounding benefits, so after about a week of swishing for 20 minutes each day I gave it up. Since then I've pulled oil a couple times a month at random. Then about a week ago I started thinking about it again and decided to give it another whirl. I used olive oil this time because it seemed convenient. I swished for about ten minutes a day for a few days.

Now, before I continue I want to explain that I've had a problem with plaque building up on the back of my lower front teeth for as many years as I can remember. Because of a (mostly unfounded) aversion I have to dental visits, I don't get my teeth professionally cleaned often (don't worry, otherwise my dental hygeine is great!) and I've been wanting to find a natural way to combat this stuff.

So, lo and behold I decided to floss right after oil pulling with olive oil for the first time (usually I floss at night and do oil pulling in the morning--it never occurred to me they might go better together!).  

And as I was flossing all of the plaque build up literally just broke away from my teeth. I was astonished, and ran into the bedroom exclaiming to my husband how crazy this was, that almost all the build up was gone. Over the next few days I continued to floss after oil pulling, and now I have virtually no plaque build up behind my lower front teeth. My teeth feel very smooth and clean. Nothing short of a dental cleaning has ever been able to accomplish this before, and to put the icing on the cake this was absolutely painless (yay!) and basically free (I guess besides the tiny cost of a few tablespoons of olive oil).

Oil Pulling Therapy: Detoxifying and Healing the Body Through Oral CleansingIf you want to read more about the benefits of oil pulling, check out coconut guru Bruce Fife's book Oil Pulling Therapy: Detoxifying and Healing the Body Through Oral Cleansing which can be found at a fairly reasonable price online. Not sure if your local library is going to carry this one, but it's worth a shot to see if you can reserve it to get a peek at this interesting stuff.

This post is part of Fight Back Friday hosted by Food Renegade.

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