Monday, April 1, 2013

Healthy Habit Worth Making: Oil Pulling

Oil pulling comes from Ayurvedic medicine and is a simple thing you can add to your daily routine that can provide amazing benefits.
So what is oil pulling? Simply put it is the swooshing around of oil in your mouth (similar to using mouthwash). According to Ayurveda, there are key organ meridians in the tongue and therefore this practice is integral to preventing and treating illness. Additionally there is potential for the veins and mucous membranes in the mouth to absorb nutrients from the oil. I use coconut oil because it has so many natural benefits; i.e. antimicrobial, ant parasitic, etc. The idea is that the oil attracts bacteria and toxins, as well as pulls mucous from your throat and helps to clear your sinuses. It is recommended to do it for about 10-20 minutes daily. I do it while I am blow drying my hair and getting dressed for work, as before I know it time has passed.
A couple of things to note:
  • Do not swallow or gargle with the oil – it is fully of nasty toxins!
  • When done, spit the oil into the trash, NOT the sink, as the oil can clog your drain
  • Follow by drinking a glass of water and/or rinsing your mouth
  • It is recommended that you do this first thing in the morning, but it can be done any time of the day
Oil pulling has been shown to be an effective way to improve oral heath, as it cleans up the bacteria in the mouth. However In addition to improving dental health, people have seen a wide range of health benefits from helping with sinus infections and allergies, skin disorders, digestive issues, reducing joint pain and many more.
Personally I have been doing it for a little over a week and I have already noticed some changes. I have been suffering with seasonal allergies – with all the changes in the weather lately from it snowing one day to it being in the 60s two days later, I finally broke down and started taking an antihistamine a few weeks ago. However, since I started oil pulling I have seen significantly less congestion. Further, I was suffering with some break outs on my face, which just would not seem to go away – within a few days they were well on the way to being completely cleared up! And finally – no idea if this is truly related, but something that has definitely changed is that I have a lot less cravings. I struggle with snacking at night – it is truly a conscious effort to not snack, but I have gotten better at managing it. But for the last week I have literally had NO cravings at night! This has never happened to me before and I really hope it continues! One thing is for sure, oil pulling is one habit I plan to stick with!
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