OIL PULLING: The Origin, How it Works, and What to Expect?

There’s a lot we can learn from our elders. From grandma’s beauty secrets to your great uncle’s meatball recipe, there is a wealth of valuable information to glean from past generations.

 

One ancient secret that has recently gained steam is a technique that dates back much farther than your family tree, though your ancestors might have tried it, too. 

 

Oil pulling, also known as Kavala Graha or Gandusha, has been around for more than 3,000 years. The practice originated in India as part of the Ayurvedic health care system. 

 

Ayurvedic medicine is largely based on holistic treatments for a variety of ailments. 

 

In case you’ve missed the trend, oil pulling is a method of cleaning your entire mouth (including teeth and gums) and ridding your body of harmful toxins. The practice is supposed to treat gingivitis, fight plaque, and freshen your breath. 

 

It’s just as straightforward as brushing your teeth (and probably easier than flossing). To do it, you just need to swish about a tablespoon of oil around your mouth for a period of time, then spit it out. 

 

Pretty simple, right? 

 

But what do these ancient health nuts really know about oral health? 


The Origin:

Ayurveda is a combination of the sanskrit words meaning life and knowledge, and the system has been a tradition in India for more than 5,000 years. It’s estimated that about 80 percent of the population in the India still practice Ayurvedic medicine today. 

 

Furthermore, Ayurvedic practices weren’t just resurrected. In fact, they’ve survived for thousands of years and evolved to include modern day holistic treatments and wellness exercises like yoga. 

 

Ayurvedic practitioners also employ well-known remedies like dietary changes, herbal supplements, massage, and meditation.

 

So though Ayurvedic traditions sound foreign, they are actually quite familiar. And the Western world is now finally catching on.

 

Much of Ayurvedic medicine is based on removing toxins from the body and achieving a natural balance. Followers aim to find the root of a problem and treat it naturally before it progresses.

 

You’ll also appreciate that these practices are non-toxic and non-invasive. And in a world where every medicine has a laundry list of side effects, that can be a comforting thought. 

 

A lot of research points to the importance of good oral hygiene because it’s not just the teeth and gums you’re protecting. Oral health problems, like gum disease, can lead to much more serious issues like heart attack and stroke. 

 

How it Works:

 

Oil pulling works by drawing the bacteria out of your mouth and from in between your teeth. The bacteria binds to the oil and is removed once you spit. Removing this bad bacteria is one of the best ways to maintain good oral health, and prevent potentially dangerous health problems.

 

 

Oil pulling cleans and detoxifies your mouth in the way that soap cleans dirty dishes. It literally sucks the toxins out of your mouth kind of like a vacuum and creates a clean, antiseptic environment inside your mouth. Detoxifying the mouth creates an environment that aids in preventing cavities and disease.

 

Overall it’s an incredibly effective procedure that acts as a natural remedy.

 

Some of the benefits include:

 

  • Healing tooth decay
  • Ridding the mouth of bad breath
  • Preventing gingivitis
  • Preventing heart disease
  • Reducing inflammation
  • Whitening teeth
  • Soothing throat dryness
  • Preventing cavities
  • Healing cracked lips
  • Boosting the immune system
  • Improving acne
  • Strengthening the gum and jaw

 

But there’s more…

 

You can boost your oral pulling effectiveness by making the choice to use virgin coconut oil as opposed to other options.

 

 

Studies show that coconut oil is the most effective oil at removing even the most harmful bacteria from you mouth. Scientists at the Athlone Institute of Technology found that of three oils tested, coconut oil was the only one able to remove Streptococcus mutans, a bacterium that causes tooth decay.

 

Furthermore, coconut oil is antiviral and antimicrobial, making it a natural choice for detoxification. It also contains the most lauric acid of any oil, which is a key superpower in fighting tooth decay and destroying bacteria.

 

Oil pulling with coconut oil means that you’ll also reap these awesome benefits:

 

  • Improved digestion
  • Better hormone balance
  • Balanced blood sugar
  • More energy
  • Increased levels of good cholesterol
  • Healthier skin
  • Improved metabolism
  • Reduced cellulite

     

    If you decide to try oil puling its important that you use high quality coconut oil. It should be organic, virgin, cold-pressed and unrefined. If the oil that you use does not meet these standards of quality, you will not receive the full benefits of oil pulling or coconut oil because it has been altered to where the nutrients and vitamins have been compromised.

     

    So you’re ready to tackle oil pulling, but you’re not quite sure what to do. Don’t worry! We’ll guide you through the process to make sure your oil pulling practice is successful.

     

    Steps to Successful Oil Pulling:

     

    1. Be sure to oil pull first thing in the morning right after you get out of bed and before you brush your teeth or drink anything. This is important because when your stomach is empty and you don’t have remnants of anything else in your mouth the coconut oil can focus solely on taking care of the toxins, especially the ones that have acquired overnight as you were sleeping.
    2. Scoop up about a tablespoon of coconut oil (doesn’t have to be exact) and gently swish the coconut oil back and forth throughout your mouth and between your teeth for 10-20 minutes, making sure that you don’t swallow any of the oil. It is important not to swallow the oil because it is absorbing harmful toxins and the last thing you want to do is ingest them. There’s also no need to swish vigorously. Remember slow and steady to endure the full amount of time, otherwise your jaw and mouth will get tired quickly.
    3. Once you’ve hit your desired time limit spit the oil out in the trash rather than the sink so it doesn’t clog up the plumbing. Immediately rinse your mouth out with warm water, or for added antimicrobial properties use salt water to rinse.
    4. Once completely finished with the last step just brush your teeth as normal.

     

    Not too difficult, right?


    You might still be a bit apprehensive about starting this new, foreign technique, and that’s okay.

     

    Oil pulling is a great method to improve your overall health while whitening your teeth and freshening your breath. Once you begin, you’re going to love the results.

     

    Here are some things that oil pulling newbies might notice.


    What to Expect:

     

    1. It will be tough at first.

    Oil doesn’t taste great, and trying to swirl it around your mouth for twenty minutes won’t be an easy or pleasant experience the first time around. Those who have done it say it’s best to start slow. So only aim for about 3-5 minutes at first and work your way up from there. And if a tablespoon feels like too much, then use less.

     

    You want to be comfortable with the process so that you’re willing to continue. 

     

    NOTE: If you clench your jaw or suffer from TMJ, start with less oil and really focus

    on gentle swishing from side to side. Being overly aggressive can aggravate jaw pain

    and lead to an uncomfortable oil pulling experience.


    2. You might not see results immediately.


    Oil pulling works to draw out the bad bacteria in your mouth (the same stuff that causes plaque and gingivitis). One day won’t yield results, but two weeks certainly will. Keep at it and you’ll surely notice the difference.

     

    If you can find a way to work it into your morning routine then you will be much more likely to stick with it. Maybe try swishing the oil during your morning shower, or practice pulling while you’re making breakfast or preparing for your day. Distractions will help the time go by faster, and you’ll be on your way to better oral hygiene without even noticing!

     

    3. You can’t give up brushing and flossing.

     

    It might be tempting to think of oil pulling as a cure-all, but you still need to stick to your daily brushing and flossing. Think of oil pulling as a supplement to other good oral hygiene.

     

    What you can give up is those at-home whitening treatments. You’re not fooling your dentist anyways, and like Ayurvedic practice suggest, it’s better to address the root of the problem.

     

    Whitening strips can damage the enamel on your teeth and make them more prone to sensitivity. And they aren’t a real solution—you have to keep using them to see and maintain results.

     

    With time, oil pulling will eliminate a lot of common oral hygiene problems (like bleeding gums and bad breath). You’ll notice that you have less inflammation and even the softness of your lips will improve. With all of these benefits, you’ll be calling your dentist less often and avoiding those harsh, invasive cleanings.

       

      4. Essential oils help.

       

       

      If you just can’t get past the taste of oil, you’ll be relieved to hear that there is another way. Add a few drops of an essential oil (like peppermint) to your mix and the process will taste more familiar. Essential oils are superpowers in their own way, each adding additional health benefits, mood boosters, and experience enhancing flavors. 

       

      When added to an oil pulling regimen, they can make the process more effective and contribute to better overall health.

       

      While peppermint is a clearly great choice because it freshens your breath and aids in digestion0, there are a lot of other great options, too. Lemon is wonderful because it cleanses, detoxifies, and supports a healthy immune system, and basil is effective because it aids in digestion and pain relief and can help you ward off illness.

       

      If essential oils sound like your ideal oil pulling partner, then opt for a convenient pre-mixed option that includes the essential oil right in the tube, like COCOCLEAR (www.cococlear.co). With COCOCLEAR, you won’t have to bother melting the oil to get it to a comfortable liquid, and you won’t make a mess in the kitchen every morning. It’s also super convenient for travel and oil pulling on the go.

       

      And COCOCLEAR guarantees only the finest, organic ingredients to help you make the most of your oil pulling practice.

       

      5. Don’t swallow.


      The whole point is to rid your body of toxins, so don’t make the mistake of putting them right back in. When you spit, you should notice that the oil is no longer clear, but more white or opaque instead. You will know that the process is complete when the oil is converted to a thick milky, foamy solution. And don’t spit it down the drain as that might clog your pipes. Put that gross bacteria right where it belongs—in the trash!

       

      6. Stick with it!

       

      Although it seems tedious, the more you do it the happier you will be with the results and the easier it will get. Do it for at least 30 days to give it a real chance to work. 

       

      So there you have it. Oil pulling is an effective, natural way to improve your oral hygiene, not just another fad sweeping the internet.

       

      You can feel good about paying homage to your wise elders, because anything that has been around for 3,000 years is bound to have some credibility. Try it for yourself. You might become a devout member of the growing Ayurvedic community, or you might just be able to postpone those pesky dentist visits. Either way, it’s a trend that’s too good to be ignored.

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