How & Why To Do Oil Pulling

reading time: 2 min

Episode 4.
As I already explained in this blog post, oil is actually very beneficial for your body – at least in some ways. 

Overnight, toxins accumulate on the tongue. That's why we usually have a bad taste in our mouth when waking up.

Like tongue scraping, oil pulling – or Gandusha – is an ancient Ayurvedic method (dating back over 3,000 years!) to improve oral health, combat bad breath, treat gum inflammation, and even brighten your teeth. I've started doing this about 1 1/2 years ago, and I absolutely love it now :)

Oil pulling works by drawing out the bacteria and overall toxins in your body that have build up in my mouth overnight. Besides the oral hygiene benefits your mouth will just feel so much more cleaner! This method also stimulates the tongue reflexology zones associated with different organs of the digestive system in our body, thereby stimulating these organs. Read more about oil pulling here or here.
It's important to support your body's natural detoxification process through various cleansing methods such as fasting, bowel cleanses, or – you guessed it – oil pulling.

What You Will Need For This Method

  • 1 tbsp of cold pressed organic coconut oil, sesame seed oil, or sunflower oil (not olive oil! it tastes yucky)
  • a spoon
  • your mouth

The Benefits of Oil Pulling

  • detoxifies the mouth by "pulling" out toxins
  • treats bad breath
  • massages and strengthens gums 
  • prevents cavities 
  • prevents colds 
  • removes stains from coffee and tea 
  • soothes dry chapped lips
  • helps relieve headaches
  • treats and prevents flu-like infections, sore throat, coughs, as well as nasal and sinus infections
  • boosts the immune system due to its antibiotic and antiviral properties
  • exercises facial muscles
  • whitens teeth naturally

How To Do Oil Pulling

1. Put a spoonful of cold pressed organic oil into your mouth. 
Start with 1 tsp if 1 tbsp is too much to keep in your mouth without discomfort. I prefer to use coconut oil as it has a milder taste than other oils, but that's totally up to you.

2. Swish and twirl for 15 to 20 minutes. (You can also do several shorter rounds of 3-4 minutes each with fresh oil instead of doing one long round.)
Again, start slow if that's too much, say 2 or 3 minutes, and increase the swishing time each time until you're at 20 minutes.

3. Occupy yourself while gently pulling the oil through your teeth. 
I like to spend those 20 minutes to get dressed, make breakfast, and pack my things for the day :)

4. Spit the oil into the trash – not into the drain, or else it will clog the sink over time!

5. Rinse your mouth with a glass of warm (salt) water. 

6. Brush your teeth. Don't forget to scrape your tongue!

How Often Should You Do Oil Pulling?

For best results, do this every morning or every 2-3 days on an empty stomach before brushing your teeth. That is because the body detoxes mainly overnight. 

I usually do this only every 2-3 days, but every now and again – for example during flue season or when I feel like I need a bit of a "detox" – I'll do it daily for 2-4 weeks straight.

Have you ever done oil pulling before? How do you feel about it? 
Let me know in the comments!