Eastern Insights: Oil Pulling


Eastern Insights: Oil Pulling
Written by: Kayla Copeland

There’s a lot of talk about oil pulling these days. It seems this age-old practice is making a come back & for good reason! Oil pulling is an oral hygiene technique which first originated over 3,000 years ago in India. The process is done by using a tablespoon of coconut oil (sesame and olive oil are also fine too) and swishing it in the mouth for 15-20 minutes (a minimum of 5 mins) pulling it between the teeth. Sounds kinda funny, huh? I know but keep reading. The benefits range from healthier gums & whiter teeth all the way to weight loss and increased energy.

So, how does this happen? What is the oil doing exactly? When we swish the oil around in the mouth – or, pull oil rather – the plaque and and millions of bacteria, fungi, viruses and other toxins get pulled out by the oil, leaving before they even get a chance to spread throughout the body. Neat! When combined with flossing regularly there will be no need to worry about cavities or gum diseases. Plus, oil pulling works as natural teeth whitening removing stains in the process.

About a week ago, I went to visit my dentist for a routine teeth cleaning and they asked me what on earth I was doing. Oil pulling is such a part of my daily routine that it took me a while until they asked me if I had ever heard of it. There it is – I guess it really does work. No cavities, healthy gums, and white teeth. Sounds good to me. The fact of it is is that I actually feel like it’s working. I can tell the extra energy boost it gives me throughout my day, healthier & overall cleaner teeth, and the detoxifying that is going on.

With yoga, we are always becoming more efficient, more alive, and more radiant in our bodies and minds. Like yoga, this practice is a gateway to health and well being. Why not give it a try.

To safely practice oil pulling:

  • use 1 tablespoon of oil (sesame, coconut, or olive oil) I use coconut
  • swish for 15-20 minutes or however long possible
  • be cautious NOT to swallow any of the oil by accident as it contains harmful bacteria
  • do 3-5 days a week if possible or even everyday. if this is difficult, begin with 1 day a week and gradually build up to 2

Here are some of the TOP REASONS for making oil pulling part of your daily routine:

  1. A brighter and whiter smile
  2. Healthier teeth and gums
  3. Increases energy
  4. Clear skin
  5. Improves digestion
  6. Weight loss
  7. Promotes normal sleep patterns
  8. Beneficial to liver & kidneys

So, I encourage you to give it a try! Notice the days that you do it and the days that you don’t – whether there is a difference at all in how you feel. Write it down. Check in with yourself after a month and see how you feel!