Oil Pulling: What is it?

Several mornings a week I do a strange ritual that really helps me stay healthy and feel good. At first it totally grossed me out but once I got the hang of it and felt the results, it’s become one of my go to daily rituals, especially after a day of heavy eating, or drinking any alcohol.

What is it?

Oil pulling has been around for centuries and was used in ancient Ayurvedic medicine. It’s simple to do, inexpensive and has many health benefits. Basically you take about a tablespoon of oil in your mouth and swish and suck it around for 15 minutes, then spit it out.

The oil will have absorbed toxins, bacteria and other harmful substances from your body. When you spit it out, you’re ridding yourself of all those pollutants that slow you down and create disease.

Once these are removed your body can begin to heal itself. Oil pulling has been reported to reduce migraines, fatigue, muscle aches, arthritis, bronchitis, gum disease and skin diseases, amongst other things.

I was introduced to it by a Chinese doctor during my struggles with adrenal fatigue. The idea being that all the accumulated garbage in your systems greatly contributes to the disruption of your endocrine system. After only about two weeks I began to notice a few changes:

  • My eczema disappeared
  • I had more energy
  • My mouth felt fresher and cleaner
  • I had no more tooth sensitivity

So I kept going and continue to reap the benefits. Now I swish and suck oil about 3 – 4 mornings a week and love how clean and light it makes me feel. Lately my dentist has been asking me what I do that’s causing my gums and teeth to be so healthy and I have to say, oil pulling is one of the main contributors. At the very least, it’s harmless so why not give it a whirl.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. First thing in the morning on an empty stomach, take one tablespoon of oil into your mouth. I like coconut oil but you can also use cold pressed sesame or sunflower oil. Swish it around and pull it back and forth through your teeth. Continue this for 15-20 minutes. Then spit it out into your toilet (not your sink, where oil can clog up your pipes).
  2. Rinse your mouth with warm salt water. The salt soothes inflammation and helps to pull any remaining oil from the oral cavity. Gargle and rinse a few times until your mouth feels really clean.
  3. Then brush your teeth with a mix of salt and baking soda. I just pop it on top of my regular toothpaste but you can just use the mixture by itself.

I love this ritual because it’s simple, effective and makes me feel sparkly clean inside and out. Try it out and let us know your results in the comments below.

Happy swishing, xox

Sonia Sommer

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