What Is Oil Pulling Anyway?

What oil pulling teeth can do for you.

May 12, 2016 | By Lily Hartley

You know it's a curious health trend when it comes in hot and heavy supported by celebs, takes over the health and wellness world by storm and has you ordering a batch from amazon – but what is oil pulling anyway? 

Oil pulling was primarily used in Ayurvedic treatments, and now it is more commonly used as a fantastic method of oral detoxification. Simply, swirl around a tablesoon or two or oil, typically coconut oil, in your mouth for 10-20 minutes a day for 1-2 weeks.

The health benefits of oil pulling are great, however the thought of swilling oil around my mouth first thing in the morning did not have me jumping out of best if I'm honest. It wasn’t until late last year when I did some more research that I became more interested about oil pulling teeth. I tried oil pulling with coconut oil and here's what happened:

The first time was no picnic, but once you get used to it, it really isn’t that bad! Once you get used to swirling the oil around your mouth, it gets easier – start with 5 minutes and gradually build up the time over a week or two as to not feel like you're straining your jaw!

How To Oil Pull:

1. Oil pulling teeth is most commonly done with coconut oil, sesame oil and sunflower oil – however coconut oil tastes the best!

2. Melt the coconut oil – I boil the kettle and place my coconut oil jar into a bowl and fill it with the boiling water. The coconut oil melts very quickly!

3. Spoon 1-2 tablespoons of the melted coconut oil into your mouth and start to swill it around your mouth. Try not to swallow the coconut oil because the whole point is to keep it swirling in your mouth for as long as possible.

4. After 10-20 minutes (start with 5 minutes if this is your first time!), spit out the coconut oil into a bin, do not spit it into the sink because it will clog up your drains.

5. Rinse your mouth with water and then immediately brush your teeth.

6. This should be done first thing in the morning before you have drunk anything or brushed your teeth.

The Health Benefits Of Oil Pulling:

Better Energy

Oil pulling teeth draws out all of the bad toxins rather than you ingesting them – this frees up your immune system and gives you more energy as it reduces bacteria and keeps you clear of gum disease.

Whiter Teeth

Oil pulling with coconut oil is best if wou are primarily swishing for whiter teeth, as it has a natural antiviral property known to help brighten and clean teeth. If you can manage 2 weeks straight you should see a big difference!

Clearer Skin

If white teeth aren’t the thing you're after, maybe it's clearer skin. Oil pulling teeth removes the toxins that would otherwise enter the bloodstream through your mouth and these can affect your skin – by getting rid of them, your skin has a chance to glow!

Shift That Hangover

Now I know the thought of swilling oil around your mouth might be the last thing you want to do when you are hungover but it can actually help you! Getting rid of the toxins and bacteria can clear that hangover right up!

So go on and try it – I know it probably doesn't sound that appealing, but once you have done it a few times you get used to it, and the health benefits are amazing!

Read next: 9 Tips For Beating A Hangover From A Nutritionist

Expert Philly Gammel's tip for oil pulling
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