If you follow any health articles, websites, blogs, Pinterest boards, etc. you’ve probably seen something about “oil pulling”. Part of my Young Living adventure has also been to help my home and family become more healthy. With all of the posts about this new miracle practice of oil pulling, I had to find out what it was and why people would do such a thing.
What is it? Oil pulling is the act of swishing an edible vegetable oil around in your mouth for a certain length of time. It involves swishing the oil and pulling it through the teeth – hence the name oil pulling.
Where did it come from? Oil pulling is a popular practice in Indian Aryuvedic medicine. According to some sources it has been practiced for over 3,000 years!
Why do it? While there are many claims out there for why you should practice oil pulling, the most consistent (and somewhat proven) claim is for improved oral health. Coconut and Sesame oils contain antibacterial properties that help clean up the mouth.
What are the benefits? Many people have something to say about the benefits of oil pulling. Some say that oil pulling helps get rid of mucus. Others say that it can help heal cavities. Still others say that it can reverse receding gums and even claim that oil pulling can cure chronic diseases such as diabetes. However, there is little evidence to prove any of these claims. There are some studies on PubMed with some interesting results!
Ok, how do you do this? Swish 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil (preferably coconut, sesame or sunflower) around in your mouth for 15-20 minutes. As you swish the oil will increase in size because saliva is mixing with the oil. After 15-20 minutes spit the oil out in the trash. At this point it should be white in color. Be sure to wash out your mouth and teeth as you were ridding your mouth of toxins.
Are there variations? YES! Many people will add a drop of an essential oil to the vegetable oil for added benefits. Popular options include: Theives, Orgeano, Frankincense and Peppermint among others. Be aware that traces of the essential oils could be left in your mouth after oil pulling.
Hope this helps explain that weird practice that seems to be popping up everywhere as the miracle cure all!
Check back next week for my experience with oil pulling!
Sites used for research in this post:
*Note: I only support the use of therapeutic grade essential oils, like the ones produced by Young Living.