“Did you pull last night?” It came out in mid conversation when speaking on the phone to my Dad. I didn’t realise how it sounded until every head turned towards me whilst sitting in my 9 to 5 office cubicle, I shly backtracked…. Ahhh…ummm…I was referring to “Oil Pulling” …..of course.
Oil pulling, it’s an ancient Indian health remedy for your mouth. “The original Mouthwash” that has been used for centuries. It has become a little bit more main stream these days due to the popularity of coconut oil. So what is it? Basically it is when you take a tablespoon of oil (either coconut, sesame or sunflower) and swish it around your mouth anywhere form 10 to 20 mins. You then spit the oil into the bin (never down the sink as it can solidify). I do it in the shower most mornings or when I’m blow drying my hair. I also do it during the day when I’ve eaten something that lingers in my mouth even after I have cleaned my teeth a million times, also great if you have had a few to many drinks the night before.
For something so simple, the health benefits are incredible. Basically what you are doing when you “oil pull” is you are removing a large amount of plaque and bad bacteria that live in your mouth and cannot be reached just through the simple act of brushing. It can prevent mouth ulcers, gum inflammation, gingivitis, cavities and bad breathe just to name a few. They also claim that it can whiten your teeth, while I’m not sure if my teeth are whiter I like the thought of it. I grind my teeth when I sleep so when I wake in the morning and “oil pull” it also acts as a really nice muscle relaxant and I don’t hold so much tension in jaw throughout the day.
Those of you who know me well would know that I always carry a toothbrush and toothpaste in my handbag. I am the girl that when you go into a the public bathroom and everyone if reapplying their lipstick and mascara, I am brushing my teeth….it’s a strange habit but having clean mouth for me feels so GREAT and I can honestly say that oil pulling is ten times better then the ordinary toothbrush! I also love to tongue scrape but will get to that later post.
So just to recap on how to oil pull;
A spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth. I use a tablespoon but you can start with a teaspoon if you prefer. You may have to allow the oil to melt in your mouth if it is room temperature.
Swish it around your mouth for 10-20mins. I recommend doing this when in the shower or blow-drying your hair so it becomes a part of your daily routine.
Spit it out in the bin or out in the garden. Never swallow the oil as you will be taking in all the yucky toxins from your mouth and don’t spit it down the sink as after a while it will solidify (trust me I learnt this the hard way).
Wash your mouth out with water and then brush your teeth.
At first you may find you want to gag and or spit it out before the time is up, it can take a bit to get use too. It’s like anything though, if you want the results you have got to give it a go and be consistent. I would encourage you to leave a jar of coconut oil in the shower or next to the hairdryer so you can multi task and it just becomes a habit after a while. Do this everyday for 10 days and see what happens.
Let me know how you get on with it? I would love to hear your thoughts on oil pulling below.