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Oil Pulling – The How To Guide
Oil Pulling – The ‘How To’ Guide
By Jade Ellis
What is oil pulling?
Oil pulling is an Ayuverdic medicinal remedy that uses natural substances to clean and detoxify gums. The idea behind Ayuverdic oil pulling is that the natural substance, oil, is swished (Kavala Graha in Ayurveda) or held in the mouth for some time. It has been known to have effects of fighting harmful bacteria in the mouth. Other benefits are also said to include whitening teeth naturally, and gum health.
Why oil pull?
The oil acts a cleanser. When you put the oil in your mouth and work it around your teeth and gums it ‘pulls’ out bacteria. Oil pulling has a very powerful detoxifying effect. Our mouths are the home to numerous viruses, bacteria, fungi and other parasites and their toxins. Candida and Streptococcus are common to find in our mouths. It is these types of germs that cause gum disease and tooth decay, and contribute to many other health problems including arthritis and heart disease. If our immune system becomes overloaded or burdened by excessive stress, poor diet, environmental toxins, these organisms can spread throughout the body causing infections and inflammation, and possibly a number of different health problems. You can use sesame oil, olive oil, ghee or coconut oil can be used for this technique.
Why is coconut oil popular for oil pulling?
Ayuverdic medicinal practitioners naturally use sesame oil as it is staple in India. Coconut oil has become a very popular choice for oil pulling, and the power of coconut oil has boomed over recent years. Coconut oil has been shown to moisturize skin, decrease wrinkles and age spots, balance hormones, lower cholesterol, burn fat, balance blood sugar and improve energy and improve digestion.
Streptococcus Mutans is bacteria that is prominent in the mouth and it has been studied for its role in tooth decay and gum disease. When oil pulling with coconut oil, Streptococcus Mutans bacteria in the mouth has been shown to decrease. It is said that oil pulling with coconut oil can help with everything from acne, to sore throats and even heart disease. Good oral health can benefit the body in other ways.
Oil pulling and Ayurveda
There have been studies written about health benefits of oil pulling. The Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, which highlighted a study that reviewed holistic approaches to oral health and discovered that oil pulling is one of the most effective natural health solutions known to scientists that prevent tooth decay and loss. It highlights that Ayurveda advises oil gargling to purify the system, as each section of the tongue is connected to different organs, such as the kidneys, lungs, liver, heart, small intestines, stomach, colon, and spine. The detoxification process of oil pulling extends far beyond oral health, and reaches the entire body.
Oil pulling tips
- It is important not to gargle with the oil as you may swallow toxic oil back into the body.
- Always oil pull first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.
- If using coconut oil, let the oil slightly melt in your mouth first.
- When starting out try to oil pull for 5 minutes, then increase to 10, 15, 20.
- Use the right amount of oil for you. Perhaps start out with a tea spoon and then increase each time.
- While oil pulling, do a small task at the same time. This can take your mind off of your mouth and help time pass.
How to Guide
Put 1-2 tablespoons of oil in your mouth.
Make sure to oil pull first thing when you wake up. It is best to oil pull on an empty stomach. The oil traditionally used in oil pulling is sesame oil although coconut oil has proven to be the more popular option recently with many people favouring this oil.
Swish for 20 minutes
When oil pulling, timing is very important. You need to leave the oil in your mouth long enough to break through plaque and bacteria but not long enough that the body starts re-absorbing the toxins and bacteria. The oil will double in volume and the oil will get thicker and should be a creamy white colour when spit out. It may be difficult at first to make the full 20 minutes; so maybe aim for 5 – 10 minutes on your first try.
Spit the oil out in a bin
It is important not to spit the oil in the sink! The oil might thicken and clog your pipes. Also, do not swallow the oil, as it should be full of bacteria, toxins and pus that have been removed from your mouth.
Rinse well with warm water
Most say that warm water seems to clean the mouth better. Swishing the warm water around your mouth a few times will get rid of any remaining oil. You could also use warm salt water which is known to be a good antibacterial method.
Brushing your teeth well after oil pulling makes sure that the harmful bacteria that has hopefully been extracted, has been removed from your mouth.
- Which is the best oil for hair growth and thickness?Thank you Emiliano for your comment. In this blog we are referring more to oils, more so than butters and while we agree with you Shea is an excellent emollient for hair, it's consistency is more buttery and it is used more as a leave-in remedy to smooth hair texture. We have suggested Coconut oil as it helps slow down hair loss by penetrating deep into your hair shaft to prevent protein loss, which in turn prevents breakage. When applied to your scalp, it simultaneously moisturises and removes build-up around your hair follicles to encourage hair growth and is one of base oils always used in Ayurveda for hair treatments. As this post is more focused for hair and not for skin, the comedogenic scale applies to skin/pores and not hair follicles. Thank you again for your feedback.
- Which is the best oil for hair growth and thickness?Hello Zu, yes hair loss can be very stressful and this in turn amplifies the cause almost.. Perhaps with Covid, your system may have been depleted of nutrients and fighting the virus can take its toll on your immune system, so sometimes our hair and skin suffer when we have been ill. We really believe in oils for scalp massage as the best way to revive the growth and help regenerate the follicles. It may be also worth at looking at internal supplements and making sure you are getting enough of omega oils, perhaps plant based such as nuts and seeds in your diet. For external oil treatment, would recommend the Really Good Hair oil which we create with Brahmi, this herb is known to help bring the scalp back to health and improve growth. Biotin is also a good vitamin to take as a supplement to help with hair growth so do look into that. So hope these tips will be helpful for you.
- Which is the best oil for hair growth and thickness?I, am very surprised that your article did not include Organic Shea Butter and that coconut oil, is your number one choice for hair growth and thickness. According to the comedogenic scale, coconut oil, has a rating of (4), on a scale from (0), to (5), on clogging your pores. Why would anyone put coconut oil, on their hair or skin knowing the pores will get clogged up. Shea Butter, on the other hand has a (0), rating on the comedogenic scale, which is great for dry hair and skin and won't clog up your pores.
- Which is the best oil for hair growth and thickness?Thank you for your very informative article. I suffered COVID in December, 2020, and in February I started experience extreme hair loss and all my hair jus falls like a person who is under going Chemo therapy. It's very depressing. Had to cut off all my hair and even the little that is left is falling off daily not sure what to do. Please suggest something.
- Carrot Oil for Face Hello :) You can use carrot oil only in small drops on your skin in the morning/during the day since it is highly potent. Carrot oil is rich in vitamins and is a very effective moisturiser. You can also mix a few drops of Carrot Oil with your favorite face cream. You can do that at least twice a week or include it in your daily skincare routine. Hope this helps.
- Carrot Oil for Face Can I use the carrot oil in the day time? Because I am using Vitamin c serum in the night. Please advise. Thanks