Oil Pulling — Everything You Need to Know
What is Ayurvedic Oil Pulling?
We first started learning about Ayurveda while on a backpacking trip in Thailand. We think eastern medicine is fascinating. Our personal opinion is that eastern medicine involves much more sacrifice and work. Western medicine usually provides the way for the “easy way out.”
In the US it is common for someone to pop many pills and not really know what is in the medicine they are consuming. Most do not even have patience to think about, why am I feeling sick? What did I consume? How have my thoughts contributed to this illness? That is a conversation for another day.
Lucid Practice’s newest contributor, Rory Trollen, talked about the niyama, Saucha. Saucha is among many things, cleanliness. At this point in my life I look at it as purity.
According to the Sutras, yogis should keep their bodies extremely clean. Rory spoke about how before and after asana his guru would teach him to clean his body thoroughly from his tongue to his feet. It helped the body know that it was pure.
One of the better cleaning cleansing techniques he taught us about was oil pulling.
What is oil pulling?
Oil pulling is an ancient, effective, harmless way to cleanse the gums, teeth, tongue, and other areas of the mouth. Oil pulling is very simple and inexpensive. The cost is the price of a daily spoonful of vegetable oil, cheaper than even a multi vitamin. Yet it is one of the most powerful forms of therapy.
How to Oil Pull
Take a spoonful of your preferred oil (it can be olive oil, coconut oil, vegetable oil or any plant based oil) and swish it around your mouth like you would use mouthwash. Continue to swish and gargle the oil around in your mouth for twenty minutes. Whatever you do, do not swallow the oil as it has become toxic from cleansing your mouth. Spit the oil (we usually do this outside because it can clog sink/shower drains) and rinse your mouth thoroughly with water.
Why Oil Pull?
The most obvious result of oil pulling is improved dental health. Teeth become whiter, gums pinker and healthier looking, and breath fresher. That alone makes it worthwhile.
Oil Pulling removes harmful organisms, bacteria and fungus from the mouth in ways that are not otherwise possible.
What is really remarkable is that the health benefits don’t stop there. Many health problems, including those which medical science has yet to find cures for, are also improved or completely cured.
Additional Benefits of Oil Pulling
- Better quality of sleep
- Better breath (because of the removal of bacteria stuck between teeth and gums)
- Increased energy
- Regulated menstrual cycles
What type of oil to use for Oil Pulling
Use any of the following type of oil for oil pulling (always use extra virgin oils):
- Sunflower Oil (used in traditional oil pulling in India)
- Sesame Oil (used in traditional oil pulling in India)
- Olive Oil
- Vegetable Oil
- Coconut Oil
For the following reasons, we prefer oil pulling with coconut oil:
- Coconut oil is antimicrobial
- Coconut oil is antibacterial
- Coconut oil tastes sweeter and less acidic than most other oils!
Our Experience Oil Pulling
We have been oil pulling a few times a week for the past two years and have noticed the amazing benefits. After beginning this practice, you’ll likely never purchase Crest white strips or any other artificial whitener. You’ll probably never again use mouthwash because oil is cheaper, more effective, and free of alcohol and harsh chemicals. Your teeth will feel healthy, your mouth will feel healthy, and your mind might even feel healthier.
Have you ever tried oil pulling? What type of oil do you use and why?