Oil pulling, or Kavala, is an ancient Ayurvedic technique where you swish an oil, such as sesame seed oil, around in your mouth for about 20 minutes and then spit it out.
Dr. Bruce Fife, who has written an entire book on oil pulling, says the oil acts as a cleanser, similar to a mouthwash, but without the chemicals. “When you put it in your mouth and work it around your teeth and gums it “pulls” out bacteria and other debris. As simple as it is, oil pulling has a very powerful detoxifying effect. Our mouths are the home to billions of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other parasites. It is these with their waste products that cause gum disease and tooth decay and contribute to many other health problems through the result of inflammation.
Although there’s no scientific evidence to support these claims, there are 3,000 years worth of personal testimonials from people India and a growing number of testimonials from people in the U.S. I have personally been oil pulling for three years. I love it!!! Since I started to oil pull, my dentist always comments on how healthy my gums are and how little plaque I have. I have listed some of the other benefits claimed.
- Brightening & whitening teeth
- Healthier gums
- Removal of mucus
- Reduction of bad breath
- Decreased headaches
- Clearer sinuses
- Reduction in allergies
- Decreasing inflammation
How to oil pull
Drink 1 cup of warm water on an empty stomach first thing in the morning.
Have a sesame oil bottle dedicated to your personal use and take a swig of organic unrefined sesame oil.
Swish through your mouth for 20 minutes while you’re busy doing something else; I usually walk my dogs. The first few times you may activate your gag reflexes, but usually clears by the third day it is fine. If you have this problem, I recommend sticking with it for at least three days. Remember this won’t kill you!
Spit into the trash, the compost or outside in the grass, but not in the sink, as you don’t want to clog the pipes.
Rinse mouth with warm salt water made by combining ½ c water with ¼ teaspoon of sea salt.
Another method that my mother uses is a water pick with an essential oil added to it. She adds three drops of Young Living Thieves essential oil to the water and does her water pick thing. She states her dentist has commented positively on the health of her gums since she started doing this. If you use an essential oil, please make sure you purchase a therapeutic grade essential oil.
The bottom line is oral hygiene is extremely important in reducing overall body disease burden by reducing inflammation, which is believed to be a common pathway to many chronic diseases. Come on, give it a try! Make your mouth happy today!