WTF is oil pulling?
Oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedan practice of swishing a tablespoon of oil (coconut, sesame, or sunflower oil will work fine) around your mouth for 10-20 minutes and then spitting it out. The result? Whiter teeth, a reduction in plaque-induced gingivtis and halitosis, plus, it can also clear up your sinus, according to some studies. Awesome, ey? Celebrity fans include Gwenyth Paltrow and Shailene Woodley! Ma-try na nga!
So how does it work?
Lipids from the oil dissolve with the saliva in your mouth, and that process is said to detoxify your mouth AND your body.
Remember to swish, don’t gargle. Spit out the oil so the toxins don't linger for too long inside your mouth. I suggest spitting on thick tissue or a kitchen towel and tossing it into the trash. If you spit on the sink or your toilet bowl, the oil could clog the pipes. Rinse with warm water, then brush and floss as usual.
Oil in your mouth?! Doesn’t that feel disgusting?
Ain't gonna lie. It was weird. I suggest letting the oil come to room temperature so it’s in liquid form. Don’t panic if the oil seems to multiply in your mouth the longer you're swishing—totally normal because the oil mixes with your saliva.
I pulled first thing in the morning as suggested, on an empty stomach, before brushing my teeth. The first try wasn't what I expected. I felt I had to consciously not gag. I only lasted five minutes and since it was the first day, I felt no huge difference but wanted to give it another shot.
Coming from the previous day’s experience, I decided to come up with a distraction to help pass time. I pulled in two 5-minute intervals, checking my emails, and browsing through my social media accounts to keep busy.
Results: I suffer from mild allergies and was pretty impressed that by midday, I would feel phlegm building up so that I could cough it out. Gross, but satisfying.
I noticed something super interesting and probably TMI, but I felt like I had way less morning breath! This is most probably because oil pulling lessens the plaque buildup and gets rid of bad breath-causing germs.
By the end of the week, I could do about 15 minutes of swishing straight with no problem. I noticed my teeth were getting whiter and that my pimples were way less inflamed than usual.
To be honest, the effects of the first week totally impressed me! I didn't notice any life-changing effects on my health, but waking up with better breath, clearer skin, and whiter skin were enough to convince me to incorporate oil pulling into my morning routine! It’s painless, hassle-free, and cheap! I’m pretty excited to see what the results will be a month or so from now.
How about you, CGS? Would you try oil pulling?