8 Oil Pulling Benefits For Better Oral Health

8 coconut oil benefits / a coconut, a glass jar full of coconut oil, a wooden spoon on a white wooden table

Last Updated on January 13, 2023 by Lori Geurin

Do you want to improve oral health without spending a fortune on expensive treatments? Oil pulling may be the answer! This ancient Ayurvedic practice has been around for centuries and is gaining popularity as people learn about its amazing benefits.

From reducing inflammation and plaque buildup to whitening teeth and freshening breath, oil pulling can do wonders for your mouth. In this blog post, we’ll discuss eight of the most impressive oil-pulling benefits that will help keep your pearly whites shining bright!

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What Is Oil Pulling?

Oil pulling is an ancient Indian remedy that has been around for centuries. For one to practice this, they must take a tablespoon of organic, cold-pressed oil and swish it back and forth in their mouth for 20 minutes.

While swishing or “pulling” the oil, it should be kept in your mouth until there is no more oil left. This process may be repeated once a day. One of the best types of oils to use is coconut due to its many health benefits.

coconut oil

How To Do Oil Pulling With Coconut Oil

Oil pulling is a very easy practice to master once you get the hang of it.

  1. First, if you want to try oil pulling with coconut oil, make sure the organic oil you are using is cold-pressed.
  2. Second, make sure your mouth is filled with coconut oil and no other food or liquid because this will prevent any kind of accidental swallowing while also preventing bacteria from spreading.
  3. Thoroughly swish the coconut oil in your mouth for 20 minutes when you first begin. This may be tough in the beginning, but do not give up! Keep swishing until there is no more oil left in your mouth and then spit it out in the trash (do not swallow).

I filmed this little (somewhat goofy) video to demonstrate how I oil pull with coconut oil when I’m getting ready in the morning. Here is a link where you can watch the video.

8 Oil Pulling Benefits For Better Health:

Here are some of the fantastic advantages of oil pulling with coconut oil.

1. Detoxifies the body

Our mouths are home to a variety of bacteria and harmful toxins. Examples of common toxins include:

  • pollution
  • pesticides
  • preservatives added to prepackaged foods
  • harmful bacteria
  • yeasts inside the body
  • chronic infections
  • stress
  • negative thinking

Plus, many people have amalgam fillings in their teeth which are made of about 50% mercury.

If these toxins build up in your body they can cause a lot of damage and disease. Oil pulling can help “pull” the toxins out and eliminate them from your system.

Related: 15 Simple Strategies To Detox Naturally

Check out our social media detox challenge!

2. Freshens breath

Halitosis is a by-product released by bacteria in the mouth. Oil pulling helps get rid of these bacteria, giving you fresh, clean breath. What a great benefit!

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3. Whitens teeth

In my experience, using coconut oil for teeth whitening is amazingly effective. It works just as well, if not better, than commercial teeth whiteners (such as Crest Whitestrips) which are full of bleach and other toxic ingredients – and often taste terrible and cause tooth sensitivity.

Related: Healthy Teeth: How Loving Your Smile Can Be So Simple

oil pulling benefits / toothbrush and coconut oil
Credit: @herbalremedies.247

4. Helps your body manage hormonal changes more efficiently

Though scientific evidence is lacking to support this claim, many people maintain that oil pulling has helped them balance their hormones.

When your body has fewer toxins to clean out, it has more energy to spend on other important functions like restoring its delicate balance of hormones.


5. May help prevent headaches and migraines

Did you know that a major cause of headaches is an overload of toxins in the body? Oil pulling may help naturally cleanse your body from these harmful toxins.

This may help prevent future headaches and migraines.

Related: Migraine Buddy: THE App For People With Migraines

6. Removes plaque

Oil pulling may help reduce harmful bacteria (Streptococcus mutans) which produce plaque that causes cavities (1).

Just 20 minutes of swishing with coconut oil may stop plaque from settling and building up on your teeth. Oil pulling can also eliminate any kind of bacteria on the surface of the mouth by coating it with the oil. This will lessen the risk of tartar buildup and help avoid gum disease.


7. Improves skin conditions

Removing toxins from your body has a positive impact on your skin too. It can help clear acne and other skin conditions.

Oil pulling has been used in an attempt to treat a variety of ailments, including eczema and psoriasis, while others have reported seeing a more radiant complexion.

8. Heals bleeding gums

Oil pulling reduces overall inflammation and helps reverse gingivitis, which is inflammation of the gums.

Oil pulling seems to reduce inflammation which can help heal irritated or bleeding gums. Coconut oil may also soothe gum tissue and help reduce redness.

Oil Pulling Side Effects

There are no known physical side effects to practicing oil pulling. However, swishing the oil around in your mouth might irritate your jaw or give you a headache as a result of the swishing movement.

Coconut oil is very beneficial and may kill some types of bacteria. If you do notice any adverse reactions to the specific oil you’re using, discontinue use and consider switching to a different type of oil.

coconut oil in a glass jar  with a spoon

Which Oil Should I Use For Oil Pulling?

There are different oils you can use. I use coconut oil for my daily oil pulling. You might like to try coconut oil too because of its many health benefits.

A reader recently asked me if there is a type of coconut oil that doesn’t have the coconut oil flavor.

It’s important to mention that virgin coconut oil generally has a mild flavor but if you don’t want to try this you may want to try expeller-pressed refined coconut oil.

Although expeller pressed oil is refined it has the same health benefits as virgin coconut oil. And the refining process used to make the expeller pressed is all-natural so it is not harmful to you like other refined products can be. Still, you don’t have to use coconut oil to do oil pulling.

You do want a high-quality, pure, organic plant-based oil. Coconut oil is one many people use. But you can also use sunflower, olive, sesame, walnut, avocado, black cumin seed, and others.

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Tips for Using Coconut Oil in Other Ways, Including Externally and Internally

There are many fun ways to use coconut oil aside from just oil pulling. Here are just a few:

  • If you have a chronic sore throat, try gargling with coconut oil instead of saltwater. It can soothe your throat and provide relief from the discomfort it is causing.
  • Coconut oil also makes a great moisturizer for your skin. If you have dry skin, apply a thin layer of coconut oil to create a protective barrier for it.
  • And if you’re a morning person who never feels awake no matter how much coffee they drink, try using coconut oil in your morning coffee or tea by blending in just one tablespoon before drinking it.

There are many other uses for coconut oil at home and with your pets as well!

Be sure to check out 81 Uses For Coconut Oil for a huge list of creative ways to use coconut oil.

oil pulling benefits infographic on a blue green background with coconuts
8 Reasons To Start Oil Pulling INFOGRAPHIC | LoriGeurin.com

Final Thoughts – Oil Pulling Benefits

If you’ve never done oil pulling before, you may want to read How To Do Oil Pulling For Better Health. It explains exactly what to do.

I hope this list of 8 oil-pulling benefits encourages you to try it for yourself and enjoy the health benefits! Even though there’s not a ton of research about the effectiveness of oil pulling so many people say that it’s helped them. And I know from experience that oil pulling with coconut oil makes my teeth whiter, is super affordable, and doesn’t cause sensitivity like commercial products.

Here’s a popular organic virgin coconut oil from Thrive Market. It’s high-quality and affordable.

There are many benefits of using coconut oil for everything from oil pulling to beauty routines and more. It is a staple in my house and I hope you feel the same after reading this post!

Have you tried oil pulling? What results did you notice? Comment below!

25 thoughts on “8 Oil Pulling Benefits For Better Oral Health”

  1. Hey, thank you for this informations. Do I have to brush my teeth before I start pulling oil in the morning or should I do it afterwards?

    Thank you

    1. Hey, Joana – absolutely, thanks! That’s a great question.

      You don’t need to brush your teeth before oil pulling. Just make sure you spit the oil out in the trash when you’re done. Then swish some water around in your mouth and spit that out to make sure you get rid of all the bacteria and toxins you “pulled.”

      When you’re all done you can brush your teeth. Hope this helps!

    2. I did this almost every day for 2 months and my teeth became very white! I actually cut back coz I thought they were too white!

    1. Hi Carol! Thanks so much for sharing this! I’m happy you’re seeing whiter teeth from oil pulling. It really is a great benefit.

      So glad you stopped by…hope to see you back soon!

  2. I’ve never tried oil pulling but the health benefits sound amazing. I know coconut oil does so many good things to our body. Should try this!

    1. Hi Lori, Beautiful name, by the way! 🙂

      I’m so happy you’ve tried it before! It’s okay if you miss a few days (or weeks). I’ve been there too. To me it’s so worth the small amount of effort it takes, and I agree…it works!

  3. I have heard of oil pulling but I have never tried it myself. I had no idea that it had so many great health benefits. I may have to try this myself.

  4. I have never tried oil pulling(actually I never heard of it before). This is definitely something I am going to look into further, especially the migraine aspect of it.

  5. Add Turmeric to that dollop of coconut fat. Whitens teeth even more and more. After, brush your teeth with water to remove yellow coloring. Remove stains around the mouth with a smidgen of coconut fat.

    1. Thanks for sharing this, Jackie! Turmeric is great, isn’t it? I definitely have to add this to my oil pulling regimen!

      Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Please come back soon!

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