I started oil pulling recently. What is it? Let me explain

Every morning, I wake up and this is my routine:

  • Wash my face six times with cold water to wake up and refresh.
  • Oil pull for 20 minutes with coconut oil. As I do that, I get my lunch ready, water my plants and wander around the house.
  • Yoga for 30 minutes.
  • Brush my teeth and tongue scrape.
  • Get dressed for work.
  • Drink a warm cup of water and have breakfast.
  • Pack my bag and head out the door.

I think most people will understand most of that — it’s a pretty basic morning routine, save for the oil pulling and maybe even the tongue scraping.

What is oil pulling?

Oil pulling, or gundusha, is an ancient Ayurvedic technique — think of it as ancient mouthwash.

What kind of oil do I use?

The type of oil you use is entirely dependent on your dosha because the benefits are completely different.

Pittas should use coconut oil (go for virgin, unrefined and organic) because it’s cooling and counterbalances their active digestive fires.

Vatas and Kaphas should use sesame oil (raw and organic) because it’s warming and counterbalanced their cool digestion, which often leaves them feeling cold.

When should I do it?

You should oil pull in the morning, but depending on who you ask, you could get different answers as to whether you should do it before or after you brush your teeth and tongue scrape.

I prefer to do it before, as I find it more efficient when it comes to drawing out any toxins.

How do I do it?

You oil pull by swishing oil in your mouth for anywhere between five and 20 minutes.

Put ½ to 1 tablespoon of oil in your mouth.

Move it around your mouth and in between your teeth — don’t forget the tongue and the back of the mouth.

You can walk around, get ready for work and make breakfast as you go.

You’ll gather saliva, toxins and more, so don’t be surprised if you suddenly find you don’t have much room.

When you’re done, spit it out into a compost bin — if you spit it down the drain, it could block the system.

Don’t swallow the oil though — it’s full of toxins, so you’ll reverse all the work you just did.

Rinse your mouth with warm salt water to remove any leftover bacteria.

Why should I do it?

There are countless benefits to oil pulling — some of the more obvious ones are whiter teeth and fresher breath.

But, did you know it can also help:

  • Prevent cavities and gingivitis,
  • Improve digestion,
  • Alleviate headaches,
  • Clean the tongue and roof of the mouth,
  • Improve breath,
  • Strengthen teeth and gums,
  • Lessen jaw pain,
  • Alleviate headaches and hangovers,
  • Reduce acne, psoriasis and eczema.

Digestion starts in your mouth, so it makes sense that keeping that area clean is the best way to encourage your body to work better.

It does all of this by separating the good and bad bacteria in your mouth, as well as calling up anything your body needs to get rid off.

Are you ready to try oil pulling?
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