My kids called me crazy when they saw me doing my coconut oil pulling routine this morning, but this trick is believed to offer so many benefits that it is worth your time to take a look. There is actually nothing new about this practice. Oil pulling comes from the Ayurveda or Ayurvedic medicine, which dates back to the Vedic Period in India, in the mid-second millennium BCE.

Oil pulling basically means replacing your mouthwash with virgin oil, and working it around your mouth for a few minutes. I do my oil pullings with coconut oil, but you can use any cold-pressed virgin vegetable oil. Coconut, sunflower, and sesame oils seem to be the favorites because they have milder tastes than other virgin oils. What you need to do is, when you wake up, or at any time of day on an empty stomach, take about a tablespoon of oil and move it around your mouth without swallowing. Swish the oil through your teeth, and around your entire mouth, do this for as long as you can, ideally 20 minutes. You can do it in the morning while you shower and do your other morning routines, this way the time will go by without you even noticing. The reason why it is important to do it for a long period of time, a minimum of 10 to 15 minutes, is that you want to create an enzymatic reaction between the oil and your saliva, which will ultimately be responsible for the health benefits attributed to the practice.

After doing this for 20 minutes, spit it out, and rinse your mouth thoroughly with water. The process is very easy, and the benefits are very much worth it. When you work the oil around your mouth, it reacts with your saliva, activating key enzymes that draw toxins out of the blood through the mucous membrane of your mouth. When you do your oil pulling for enough time, you allow time for the oil to “seep” into the periodontal pockets in your mouth. The extended time of the pulling keeps the antibacterial agent in the mouth long enough to reach and pull out the harmful bacteria responsible for many of our ailments. It is very important to keep in mind NOT to swallow the oil after pulling, since it will have become contaminated and toxic, as it has pulled out all the toxins and impurities in your oral cavity.

Here are, among the many reported, my top 10 benefits of oil pulling.

  1. Teeth whitening, together with overal oral health. Prevents cavities, gingivitis, and bad breath. Helps stop bleeding gums and prevents dryness of the lips, mouth and throat. You will start seeing your teeth whiter and brighter after a few days of doing your oil pullings.
  2. Helps relief migraine headache and pain relief.
  3. Reduces inflammation of arthritis, and joint pain.
  4. Helps support normal kidney function, and prevent gastro-intestinal illnesses and problems. Oil pulling is very effective in helping detoxify the body of harmful metals and organisms. Aids with constipation problems.
  5. Reduces the symptoms of allergies, and may help reduce symptoms of bronchitis and sinus congestion.
  6. Improves skin health, and aids in the reduction of eczema.
  7. Aids in the correction of hormone imbalances, regulating menstrual cycles, and reducing PMS symptoms.
  8. Reduces hangover after alcohol consumption.
  9. Helps have clearer mind, increased energy and faster metabolism.
  10. Improves the quality of your sleep and may help with insomnia problems.

I truly believe  the answer to most of our beauty and health questions has been in nature all along, available through this kind of practices together with a balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. An easy and natural treatment like oil pulling can replace expensive, and sometimes toxic, chemical treatments. Give it a try!