Oil Pulling: Can You Say “Go Swish?”


If you had never heard of oil pulling, then you are about to be introduced to one of the easiest and most inexpensive ways to detox the body and improve your health. The more I read and learn about oil pulling, the more I love this simple process that offers all sorts of benefits. Here’s an article from Be Well Buzz that will fill you in on this great self-help health tool…


(BeWellBuzz) A gift from India and brought back from the dead by a Ukrainian physician, Dr. Karach, oil pulling is nothing short of a miracle. It is so effective against various ailments that it is rightfully considered as an alternate medicinal treatment in itself. The best thing about this 5,000 year old practice is that it is neither esoteric nor expensive. Anybody and everybody can use it if they want to. To use it, you need only two things: 10 ml of sesame or sunflower oil and 15-20 minutes of time.

What is Oil Pulling?

Oil pulling is a simple home remedy that cures various diseases ranging from common colds to acute allergic conditions, bronchitis,indigestion to stomach ulcers, and headaches to migraine. The treatment involves rinsing your mouth with 10 ml of sesame oil or sunflower oil for about 15-20 minutes.

This treatment has its roots in ancient Indian traditional medicine system Ayurveda, considered by most Eastern and Western scholars as the oldest form of health care. The avatar of oil pulling popularized by Dr. Karach is slightly different from the original one, listed in the Ayurvedic textbook Charaka Samhita.

Both forms, however, are equally effective. To avoid confusion, in the “how to do oil pulling” section, we speak of only Dr. Karach’s method.

Sesame oil is more warming and may be more gently detoxifying than other oils that are “colder” energetically. It has a somewhat strong sesame flavor, which is a familiar food taste for most people. Sunflower oil has a milder taste if you prefer that.

Shared ahead are the key differences between the original oil pulling and Dr. Karach’s oil pulling. Before we see them, we must understand two things:

  • Both the original oil pulling and Dr. Karach’s version are highly effective
  • Users can choose any one of them or practice both

Ayurveda’s oil pulling Vs Dr. Karach’s oil pulling

There are two differences between the aforementioned two versions. These are:

  • Ayurveda recommends the use of sesame oil, while Dr. Karach propagates sunflower oil
  • Ayurveda recommends oil pulling first thing in the morning (on empty stomach) right after brushing teeth. Dr Karach, however, advises oil pulling just before breakfast on an empty stomach

Sesame or sunflower – which is more effective?

Both are equally effective. It is interesting to note that while these two oils have shown almost identical healing capabilities, other oils, used by various scientists at different times, did not exhibit any noteworthy healing capabilities.

What are the benefits of oil pulling?

Oil pulling is known to be useful in the treatment of the following conditions:

  • Common diseases such as cold, cough, allergies, headaches, etc
  • Skin problems such as itching, pigmentation, eczema, scars, rashes, etc
  • Respiratory problems such as bronchitis, asthma, etc
  • Headache and migraine
  • Tooth pain, gum diseases, dental caries
  • Back pain, neck pain, joint pains, and arthritis
  • Constipation and other conditions arising due to some problem in digestive system
  • Blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes
  • Piles

In addition to the aforementioned conditions, which studies confirm can be treated, prevented, or controlled by oil pulling, other conditions in which oil pulling might be useful include:

  • Chronic sleepiness
  • Liver disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Cancer

A survey conducted by Indian daily newspaper, Andhra Jyoti, confirms the healing properties of oil pulling.

Approximately 2 ½ years after publishing an article on oil pulling and its several benefits, Andhra Jyoti conducted a survey to understand the following:

  • The kind of health conditions the procedure cured
  • The degree of its effectiveness

1041 readers responded to the advertisement sharing their experience with oil pulling. Among the respondents, 927 (about 87%) stated that oil pulling cured one or more disease. 114 respondents (approx. 11 %) reported that oil pulling did not provide relief from the ailment(s) they were suffering from.

An analysis of the testimonies of people who found oil pulling useful revealed that it successfully cured the following diseases: allergies, cough and common cold, gum diseases, dental caries, infections in the ear, nose, mouth, eyes, and throat, tooth pain, headache, neck pain, migraine, back pain, lip cracking, allergic sneezing, and fever.

Recently people started using organic coconut oil as it tastes better. It has a cooler energy than sesame oil, so it’s good for people who tend to have a warmer constitution or condition of heat. Some people have reported that coconut oil is more strongly detoxifying, which isn’t always a good thing for some people, so it’s best to be cautious and go slowly.

How to use oil pulling

To use oil pulling, follow these steps:

  • After brushing your teeth, and while on empty stomach, take 10 ml of sunflower oil (1 tablespoon or 2 teaspoons) and put it into your mouth
  • Rinse your mouth thoroughly for about 15-20 minutes
  • Spit the oil after 15-20 minutes
  • Wash your mouth thoroughly with water
  • Drink a glass or two of water

Note: If you have had a cup of tea or coffee after brushing, wait for at least 60 mins before doing oil pulling. If you have had a breakfast, wait for at least 4 hrs before doing oil pulling.


  • Oil pulling is not recommended for children under 5 years of age
  • Use 5 ml of sunflower for children above 5 years of age
  • Do not gargle and do not swallow. More importantly, do not worry if you swallow the oil. Sunflower, or sesame oil, is edible oil. When swallowed, it is either digested or excreted naturally.
  • If the color of the solution you spit is yellow, it means that you have not rinsed the oil long enough or have used it in amounts greater than the recommended dosage. A white spit indicates that you have done the procedure correctly.

References: http://oilpulling.com/whatisoilpulling.htm

Oil pulling for alleviating bad breath:



PERSONAL NOTE: When I was first introduced to oil pulling a number of years ago, all the data mentioned using sesame oil, which was what I used, even though I didn’t like the taste or consistency (I like it in recipes, but not a big mouthful of it straight). Then when I started reading so many good things about coconut oil (see my numerous posts on this “miracle” health aid) and began to add it to my health routine, I had the thought that it might be a good alternative to the sesame oil. Lo and behold, not long after that I found data that supported my theory, and even this Be Well Buzz article mentions it as an option. 

BTW, if you swallow the oil you’ve been swishing , it’s okay, as the article mentions, BUT realize you’ll also be ingesting all the bacteria and toxins the oil has accumulated or pulled from you’re system. The oil changing to white or cloudy at the end of the process is because of all the toxins; that’s why this article points out that if the oil is still yellow or clear (or whatever color it was when you started), then you didn’t swish long enough for it to absorb any toxins.

And if you want another take on oil pulling, you can go here to read what Dr. Edward Group, of Global Healing Center, has to say about the process. Much of the information is similar to the article above, but there are also a few other tidbits. And don’t forget to read my blog post on using coconut oil for pulling.

FYI, you can get organic sesame, sunflower and coconut oils at discount prices at Vitacost.com, one of my favorite on-line places. If you shop at Vitacost, be sure to sign up for a free account at eBates.com beforehand, if you don’t already have one. That way you can use the eBates portal to shop at Vitacost and earn cash back on your purchases. Plus, if you are new to Vitacost and spend a certain amount (I believe it’s $25), you will get a $10 coupon to use; eBates also gives a gift card or some other “prize” when you place your first order of $25 or more. How does it get any better than that?!



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.


13 thoughts on “Oil Pulling: Can You Say “Go Swish?”

    • zirah1 says:

      I think it’s always good to be skeptical of certain things and it’s an interesting article and may have some valid points, although she calls oil pulling a “new” technique and from all the reading and research I’ve done that couldn’t be farther from the truth and says there’s no research, which isn’t true either. I could be wrong, but it seems like her source (given at the end of the article) is more mainstream medical/dental and I find they are usually quick to judge all-natural processes that don’t fit into their belief systems or training as worthless, but that’s just my point of view and experience.

      Boy, I wish I had a list of resources and references in front of me right now that I’ve read and referred to over the years on this subject. Dr. Bruce Fife wrote a whole book on it and I’ve got a 5 page pdf of his I’d be glad to send you. And I have some more info where Dr. Karach talks about the process and a study done in India about the results people were getting. And I’ve read about (but unfortunately don’t remember where right now) how, at a chemical/molecular level it made sense/seemed possible that the oil could be extracting toxins from the mouth. And there are about a bizillion testimonials from people using the process if you do much reading on the various sites that talk about oil pulling.

      In my opinion I think the bottom line should always be to ask your body what it wants/needs by using some form of self-testing (I am in the middle of writing a post about this process). I do this w/ just about all the supplements and health protocols I do/try to make sure it’s something that’s “right” for me because every body and everybody is different, and I think if we listened more to our inner guidance, regardless of what someone else says to do or not do, then we’d all be healthier and better off in a lot of ways. 🙂

      All I know is my body says “yes” to oil pulling (often twice a day) and my gums and teeth seem healthier and stronger. Other things seem better, too, health-wise, but it’s harder to know for sure that the oil pulling had a direct link. And an interesting thing I noticed….since doing the oil pulling and spitting out the oil at the end of the process into the toilet, I have had to start cleaning the toilet every few days, instead of every few weeks. Didn’t know if it was the toxins/bacteria in the spit causing this or what, but interesting.

      Anyway, I say do more reading and research on the topic and then decide for yourself. Personally, oil pulling is something I would recommend to everyone….not only because it is easy, simple, inexpensive, all-natural and might be able to help w/ a wide variety of things, but even the article you mentioned says that there are pluses to doing it. What have you got to lose? 🙂


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