One of the things I’ve heard a lot about this year is this thing called Oil Pulling. At first I was like, “What in the world is this?”. So, I decided to research it a bit and see what this crazy fad was about. Oil pulling is where you put about a tablespoon of coconut oil into your mouth and swish it around for up to 20 minutes. Um, gross, right? Yeah, that’s what I thought at first too. But, after some more research I decided to try it. Oil pulling apparently has a long history of being used in Ayurvedic medicine, but has a limited amount of scientific studies that have looked into it. Regardless, I decided to try it. At first, I almost couldn’t stand it. It’s weird! It goes from a solid to a liquid and it’s like having olive oil in your mouth and swishing it around for a long time. After the first time, I thought to myself, “I’m never doing that again!” However, I noticed some effects that night. Here are some of my findings:
- The pain in my mouth from my teeth decreased. Little back story, my teeth are apparently a bit too big for my mouth! So, I’ve had a lot of pain there for quite some time. After oil pulling, it actually decreased after just one use!
- My teeth became whiter. One of the claims of oil pulling is that it can improve dental health. I was dubious of this until I actually saw the results for myself. I pull for about 20 minutes, so I’m not sure if the same results will be seen if you pull for less than that. So experiment and find what time frame is best for you!
- My teeth sensitivity decreased. Generally, my teeth will hurt a bit when sipping or eating hot and cold foods (like tea or ice cream). However, I saw my sensitivity go down and it lasted for at least a week, even going between hot and cold foods quickly.
- Every single night that I’ve oil pulled, I’ve slept really well. Usually, I have problems staying asleep and relaxing before bed. Not only does oil pulling leave me more relaxed, but it has helped me go to sleep and stay that way. I wouldn’t say that it’s any better than taking Melatonin, which is also a natural supplement to improve sleep quality, but it did work for me.
These are just the results I’ve seen from doing it, and I don’t do it all the time. There are numerous claims to the benefits of coconut oil, from absorbing toxins from your body, curing cavities, improving acne, and even helping with weight management and weight loss. I can’t say for certain that I’ve experienced all of these things (I’ll write another post with updated results!) but I can say that the inflammation in my gums has decreased, my teeth have become whiter, and I have had improved sleep. However, don’t just take my word for it; make sure you do your own research about it! If my post has convinced you to go a step further and consider oil pulling, here’s how you can get started:
- Buy raw, organic coconut oil (less than $10 in most stores!) I don’t think it matters what brand you use, I use one from Trader Joe’s, just because I know the quality of their products is high
- Store it in the cupboard so that it’s at room temperature (it melts better this way)
- Take a tablespoon of coconut oil and let it melt in your mouth before swishing it around
- Do this for 10-20 minutes before you go to sleep or when you wake up (that’s when I’ve seen the most beneficial results)
- Make sure to spit out the oil in the trash, so your sink doesn’t clog!
- To see long term results, try and do this every night to every other night
If you have concerns about starting this, it wouldn’t hurt to go to your doctor and ask about it. That way, you can decide if it’s really right for you. If you try oil pulling, let me know your results! I’d love to hear your story and your thoughts about this weird, but kind of cool, health routine! Feel free to like, subscribe, and share your thoughts below!