Oil Pulling

What is Oil Pulling?

Oil pulling originates from the traditional holistic Ayurveda medicine that dates back to ancient India 5,000 years ago. Ayurveda practitioners knew the importance of detoxing the body and discovered that cleansing the mouth with warm sesame oil had a positive effect on the health. The technique has been gaining popularity in recent years due to extensive media coverage with some A-list celebs adopting the practice.

What are the benefits?

The mouth is linked to general health and well being far more than most people realize. Poor oral health is known to cause and intensify many medical conditions. Tooth decay and gum disease are not trivial conditions that are just contained in the mouth but can be the root causes of many serious life threatening conditions.  People with gum disease are three times as likely to suffer a heart attack than people with healthy gums. With over 50% of the population suffering from some level of gum disease this is a major health concern for many. Diabetes, arthritis, cancer, lung infections, osteoporosis, asthma and many more ailments can be attributed to or exasperated by poor oral health. Oil pulling is by no means a magical cure for all ills, but it can be a very easy and effective way to improve dental and general health.

What is the best oil to use for oil pulling?

The ancient Ayurveda treatment used warm Sesame oil for treating certain ailments but other oils such as sunflower oil, olive oil, pumpkin seed oil and coconut oil have been successfully used. There is no evidence to suggest that any particular oil is any more or less effective than another. There is also some debate on whether the oil should be refined or unrefined, again there is no evidence to suggest that there either type is more effective than the other. Coconut oil is becoming the most popular oil by many users due to its much publicised health benefits. For anybody looking to give Oil Pulling a try Coconut oil would be a great choice to get started.

How often to oil pull?

Twice a day, first thing in the morning and last thing at night before bed would be the optimum schedule. Oil pulling directly after you wake up is a great habit to get accustomed to. The mouth does not produce saliva to bathe the teeth when we sleep so when we awake our mouths are dry, acidic and full of bacteria. This is a great time to oil pull, the process stimulates the saliva production and helps to remove as much bacteria as possible. Repeating the process in the evening will cleanse and PH balance the mouth to give the teeth protection during the night. Although morning and evening are perhaps the best times, oil pulling can be done successfully at any point during the day.

How to oil pull.

Step 1

Take 2-3 teaspoons of your preferred oil and swish it around your mouth by exercising your cheek muscles and tongue ( do not gargle or swallow). When starting out it is a good idea to use just 1 teaspoon of oil to get accustomed to the sensation. It is surprising how much saliva will be produced so starting with a small amount of oil will give an indication of how much oil is comfortable. If you find your mouth getting to full, just spit some out and carry on swishing.

Step 3

Spit the oil out into a trash can. Do not spit out onto the sink or toilet since the oil can eventually cause blockages.

Step 2

Continue the process for up to 20 minutes. The positive effects and benefits of oil pulling can diminish if it is done for less than 10 minutes. If you are struggling to hold the oil in your mouth without swallowing some, just spit it out and start again for the remaining time.

Step 4

Rinse out the mouth with water to remove the last traces of oil.

Does Oil Pulling Replace Tooth brushing and Flossing?

Absolutely not! Oil pulling is a great addition to your daily health regime but it in no way replaces the need to clean the teeth thoroughly.

Does Oil Pulling Work?

As of yet there has been very little research or controlled experiments to verify how effective oil pulling is. Some people report amazing results while others fail to realize any tangible benefits. There are many reasons why oil pulling may not work for everybody. People often find it difficult to stick to a 20 minute oil pulling routine and lose interest in the process before  seeing the benefits. In other cases a poor diet and poor health choices may prevent oil pulling from helping the body heal.

What The Skeptics Say.

Oil pulling is a controversial practice that attracts its fair share of skeptics. Some believe it is a marketing ploy or just the latest health fad to capture the imagination. There are however a growing number of people who are seeing very real benefits that can’t be achieved any other way.


Oil pulling is not a miracle cure and is not meant to replace daily tooth brushing and flossing. However, it is clear to many people that it can give very real and sometimes remarkable results. At the end of the day everybody is responsible for their own health. If you are willing to try something different I would definitely recommend giving oil pulling a try.

Feel the power!

Electric power toothbrushes have been clinically proven to be more effective at removing plaque than manual toothbrushes. Studies show that as many as 75% of people fail to take the necessary care when brushing their teeth with a manual brush. A good electric brush takes the hard work out of teeth cleaning by applying a dynamic cleaning action at the correct pressure for the optimum time period.  

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