Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Oil Pulling -- How and Why

The first thing I do when I start my day is head for the kitchen pantry and take a swig of sesame oil. Yup, sesame oil. But I don't swallow it; instead, I swish it around in my mouth until I can't stand it anymore.

I read about this last year, and I figured, "Hey, Why not?" I do some crazy things sometimes, and this is the least of them. The first time I tried it, I almost spit it out. After that, it's been no big deal.

This morning, I've already cleaned downstairs, made my bed, done a few work tasks so they would be DONE right away. I've been oil pulling for an hour, and it's 8:15. Not bad.

Time to spit it out really quickly, swish some salt water, brush my teeth. Then I'll be back to explain...

Why Did I Start Oil Pulling?

I started oil pulling because I had already been eating raw food for a few months, and I still didn't have perfect skin. I thought that raw food should perfectly cure me of all ailments immediately. It did a lot, but it did not make my skin dewy and spotless. Hmph.

So, I saw this girl's blog who is/was a model in Copenhagen (and a raw foodist). She had the "same" situation -- eating raw food for awhile and hoping for perfectly perfect skin. She found out about oil pulling and documented her journey. I saw the pictures of her dewy, amazing skin after she did this for awhile.

Sooo, why not?!

Why Oil Pull (according to me)

When I oil pull, my skin feels softer, including on my body. My feet are as soft as they could possibly be. It's really remarkable. I've always had to do these treatments with scrubs and lotions and whathaveyou just to have okay feet -- but even doing NO treatments when I'm oil pulling consistently, they're so ridiculously soft.

My blemishes disappear.

My teeth are whiter, and they feel clean.

All of the mucous is removed so that I breathe perfectly clearly. Even now -- the pollen is EVERYwhere, but I have no sign of mucous in my nose or lungs, except in the morning when I spit it out after oil pulling. Ick.

Why Oil Pull (according to "them" that agree)
(I'm paraphrasing and jumbling up info from several sources for simplicity.)

In alternative medicine, including in old Ayurvedic texts, oil pulling is an oral and systemic remedy that is said to cure about 30 systemic diseases ranging from headaches to diabetes and asthma.

One theory: Just as the skin is an organ that removes toxins from our body, the tongue is also a key organ for the elimination of toxins. Sort of how the foot is mapped out for reflexology, the tongue is also a map. Oil swishing eliminates toxins from every organ.

Another theory: There is lots of not-so-good (and in fact, really gross) bacteria hiding in our mouth. This effectively helps to remove that quickly and "easily."

Why Not to Oil Pull (according to "them" that don't agree)

There is no hard scientific evidence that oil pulling forcibly removes anything from the body.

Yes, You Can Try This At Home

1. Get some sesame or sunflower seed oil that is not roasted or heated. It should say "cold pressed" or "expeller pressed." If it's organic, great! If not, great!

2. Put one tablespoon of oil in your mouth without swallowing it. Ideally, you'll swish this in your mouth for 20 minutes or longer. If not, no sweat.

3. When you're almost finished, put some salt in a jar with hot water and shake it until the salt melts.

4. Spit out the oil, then immediately swish with the salt water. This will get the oily taste out of your mouth and kill some bad guys in one fell swoop.

5. Brush your teeth!

-Really try not to swallow it, but if you do, the world won't end.
-There will be more liquid in your mouth as you do this (from saliva and mucous), so if you need to use less than a tablespoon, it's no big deal.
-Ideally, this would be done 1-2 times every single day to start noticing major benefits.
-This should really be done on an empty stomach, perhaps in the morning upon rising and just before bed.

If you're out there swishing while you read, Happy Pulling!


Amy said...

Wow. I had never heard of this. Thanks for the post.

Anonymous said...

Hi! I also have been raw for 2 months now hoping to clear my skin but it still isnt what i was hoping for. Just like your case! Thanks for this article! I'm so happy to find someone else that i can relate to! Who is this raw model? I would love to see pictures of her skin.

bicycledays said...

excellent blog post.
i'm assembling an article about oil pulling for a website: http://www.freedomfromacne.com
can i use your picture?
my main blog is at:
nice to meet you

Helena from BrooklynBlonde said...

definitely going to try this! Thanks so much for the review.