What is Oil Pulling & Why Are So Many People Doing It?

 You may have heard of it, you may have seen it while scrolling through some social media feed, or maybe you have no clue what it is; either way, oil pulling has definitely become more mainstream lately. Simply put, oil pulling involves scooping a hunk of coconut oil (or sometimes sesame oil, but coconut oil has more benefits) into your mouth, swishing it around for 20 minutes, and spitting it out into the garbage. The coconut oil is said to improve your oral and total body health by pulling toxins from your body. The actual experience is definitely better than it sounds, I promise. 

 What exactly is it?
Oil pulling is an Ayurvedic dental technique [Ayurveda = holistic approach to health and healing; focusing more on fostering good health in the body by balancing body, mind, and spirit, and focusing less on fighting disease or illness]. There isn’t a complete understanding of how oil pulling actually works, but there are a few main theories behind it:
1.      The lipid in the coconut oil attract and absorb the toxins in your mouth
2.     The oil itself attracts and absorbs toxins
3.     The oral mechanical action of swooshing a liquid around in your mouth loosens bacteria

Sounding a bit strange? The benefits may change your mind!
o   Whitens teeth
o   Improves gum health
o   Total body detoxification
o   Help with TMJ issues
o   Strengthens the jaw
o   Prevents cavities (some people even claim it cures cavities), and prevents gingivitis
o   Clears sinuses
o   Helps with hangovers!
o   Relieves headaches 
o   Improves skin care issues (acne, psoriasis, eczema)

So how do I do it?
You’ll want to use an organic coconut oil for this, and the ultimate goal is to swish a tablespoon of it around in your mouth for 20 minutes. If you haven’t tried it before, a tablespoon might be a bit overwhelming, so try a teaspoon amount instead, and work up to the tablespoon. It is also best to do this first thing in the morning before you brush your teeth or eat any breakfast. 

The amount of oil will increase in size throughout the process; this is said to be the accumulation of toxins being pulled out by the oil. This is the main reason why you do not swallow this after the 20 minutes are up – the goal is to rid the body of toxins! Once you’re done remember do not spit the oil down the sink (it will clog your pipes as coconut oil becomes a solid at room temperature), the garbage can is your friend here.
Citing a "lack of science," the America Dental Association does not recommend oil pulling as either a supplementary oral hygiene practice, or as a replacement for standard oral health behaviors, so still be sure to attend your regular dental check ups to maintain a good dental health regime!

Sierra Yorke
Customer Service Representative 
Catalyst Health  


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