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Coconut Oil Pulling: The Beginner’s Guide

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What is Oil Pulling? - www.ohlardy.com

If you have been reading Oh Lardy, you know that in the past I made a goal to oil pull every morning.  Well, guess what!  I did!  And it was great!

I keep a small jar of organic coconut oil and a spoon in my bathroom and put a spoonful in my mouth upon arising.  I would ‘swish swish swish' while I showered, got dressed, made my daughter breakfast, etc.  I probably average 10 minutes a day.  

What is oil pulling?

Great question.

Oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic technique that dates back thousands of years.

It is a super simple process.  Essentially you swish and gargle oil (coconut oil is used often due to the myriad benefits of coconut oil), much like you would mouthwash, but for a much longer time, anywhere from 5-20 minutes.  The oil pulls toxins, bacteria, viruses, fungi, yeasts, plaque and more out of your mouth.  You then spit the coconut oil out (DO NOT SWALLOW) and rinse.

Many experts say it should be done first thing in the morning, which I have been trying to do.  But doing it at anytime will still be beneficial.

Benefits of oil pulling

The benefits of oil pulling are numerous.  Oil pulling can be detoxifying, cleansing and healing to the body.  It leads to improved skin health with less acne and a glowing complexion. It has the benefit of whitening teeth and improving gum health.  There are also countless testimonials, online, where people experience healing with arthritis, asthma, hormone imbalances, skin conditions, and more.

Since I started oil pulling, I have noticed whiter, shinier teeth and a better overall feeling in my mouth and gums.  Oil pulling is a great technique to add to your cleansing regimen, in addition to dry brushing, drinking green drinks, etc.    

You can even add essential oils for oil pulling to make it more powerful!  I often add Peppermint to make my mouth feel fresh. 

Even my daughter enjoys oil pulling!

How to Do Oil Pulling

  • Take a spoonful of organic coconut oil (sesame oil is also traditionally used) and place in mouth.
  • Swish forcefully around your mouth for at least 5 minutes (ideally up to 20 ).  Do this while you are showering, getting dressed, etc.  The time goes by quickly.
  • Spit out the oil into the garbage (don't spit in sink, it may clog your pipes!).
  • Rinse with warm water.
  • You can brush your teeth now, also, if you would like.

Here are even more ways to improve your oral health naturally.

Have you tried oil pulling?  Let us know in the comments or feel free to join our online community at Healthy Living with Oh Lardy on Facebook and let us know your experiences there!



  •  Oil Pulling Therapy
  • Tooth brushing, oil pulling and tissue regeneration: A review of holistic approaches to oral health. J Ayurveda Integr Med. 2011 Apr;2(2):64-8.
  • Effect of oil pulling on plaque induced gingivitis: a randomized, controlled, triple-blind study.  Indian J Dent Res. 2009 Jan-Mar;20(1):47-51.
  • Effect of oil pulling on Streptococcus mutans count in plaque and saliva using Dentocult SM Strip mutans test: a randomized, controlled, triple-blind study.  J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent. 2008 Mar;26(1):12-7.
  • More Great Uses for Coconut Oil from The Healthy Honeys

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What is Oil Pulling? This simple technique can lead to clearer skin, whiter teeth and better health. Helps your body detox. You will notice amazing results if you commit to it every day! My dentist recommends this for all of his patients. - www.ohlardy.com




    1. There seems to be controversy over that. I am unsure, to be honest. I do not have any mercury fillings (anymore) so have not looked into that. The book I reference in the post may give more insight!

    2. Hi!
      Could you answer that question?
      I’ve been doing this for almost 2 weeks now but i feel that the results are far from great! I’m having a lot of pimples and blackheads! i never had a very clear skin but i feel it’s getting way worse this i do oil pulling… I was wondering if it coul be linked to that…?

    1. Hi Peter! That sounds great!! I just started adding Thieves oil to mine. Makes my mouth feel so fresh. Rinsing with ACV is an interesting idea. Do you do it straight or mixed with water?

  1. I just finished the book, ‘Cure Tooth Decay,’ and so I’ve been doing this every morning for the last 2 weeks. I am really suprised by the change in my skin (for the better! Lol). I really wasn’t expecting it. Seeing your posts about it motivate me to keep going!!

    1. If you want to eat a spoonful of coconut oil for dietary benefits *AFTER* you spit out the “pulled” coconut oil, go for it! Just don’t swallow the leftovers from pulling.

  2. Could you do this while pregnant? I’m in my first trimester, and was trying to figure out some ways to stay healthier and keep bacteria, fungus, yeast out.

  3. How does one get used to doing this? I tried it a couple of times and after only a couple of minutes, I would gag, have to spit it out, and vomit. i would really like to get into this habit.

  4. The question of do you need to melt the coconut oil needs to be addressed. I see one person advised it melts in your mouth but it did not for me. My coconut oil is kept at room temp.

  5. If you have all that stuff in your mouth you better see a doctor right away.

    Do you have even one single study that claims this nonsense is true? Coconut oil is good for many things, but eliminating all that you have stated makes you a fool.

    1. This article is great, thank you. I’m not sure if you are being serious because this information is recommended by holistic dentists, along with other natural treatments.
      In case you are serious, search “Save Your Teeth” or “Cure Tooth Decay”. I got my first cavity last year and two of my children had a cavity as well. We oil-pulled 10-15 a day alternating coconut and sesame oils bc it removes bacteria in the gums between teeth which is the root cause of decay. We remineralized our teeth and did not have to get composite.
      Good luck on your quest to health.

      1. Mandy, how do you get your children to do this? Even though we brush diligently and eat a whole foods diet, my kids get cavities like crazy. However, they are 6 and 3 and I don’t think I could get them to understand the idea of this or to not think it was “yucky.” Just wondering if you had any suggestions! 🙂

  6. Dr Oz just did a segment on this a few days ago, i like the idea of using Coconut oil instead of sesame oil. Good to know thanks for the info 🙂

  7. Can I do this with a crown and fillings on my teeth? My teeth are so bad as well as my breath. I always took/take care of my teeth but drone having braces for 8 yrs and drinking pop as a kid it ruined my teeth. Wish my mom was on me more cuz now I hardly have any teeth left and can’t afford to get what I need.

    1. I have been oil swishing over a month, it has not affected my crowns, my teeth are definately whiter , note that the colour of your crowns will not change.

  8. I have heard about this oil pulling technique and I have a family member that has just adopted it. But what do you think about those that think that the potential side effects as a result of the high MCT levels in coconut out ways the benefits that will be derived??

  9. I like the idea of a healthy mouth. I am concerned about clogged drains because the multitude of foreign matter we dump in our sewers. I have an old hose with antique plumbing. The coconut oil is a solid before and when it hits cold drains will it re-solidify?

  10. I remember reading about oil pulling using sunflower oil. I tried it couple of times, and I hated it because I felt like gagging when I was pulling. Now you encouraged me to try the coconut oil.

  11. Georgia, name calling (especially when you don’t know all of the facts) only makes YOU appear foolish! Coconut oil has anti-fungal properties, therefore fungi and yeast WOULD be eliminated using coconut oil. Also you say a person needs to go see a doctor if they carry all of gross stuff that is listed in the article… It’s apparent that you haven’t a clue of basic human anatomy. A person can die from a ‘staph’ infection, but some people are common carriers of ‘staph’ which can be swabbed from an area inside of their nose! A myriad of different bacterias, et cetera, are common in and on the human body, too many for a doctor to identify. So who were you calling a fool??

  12. Is this good for bad breath. I have it all the time and have good oral hygiene. It has to heredity because my mother is the same way. Thank you for the information.

  13. Your article says it will clear up your skin and I did it for a week and my face broke out badly and I usually don’t have skin problems. Is this normal? Does it get worse before it gets better?

      1. Coconut oil is highly Comedogenic (poor clogging). Your face deserves rosehip oil ( high in vitamin c) and or grape seed oil (high in vitamin E). Coconut oil is usually not recommended by a dermatologist for the face. My teenagers as well as myself (48 yrs old) use it from the chest down to seal in moisture after showering.

  14. After the oil pulling (I haven’t tried it yet) you say I can brush my teeth. Might sound silly but can I use toothpaste? or will that ruin the benefit of the oil?

  15. thank you for the info. I’ve read a lot and have been doing it for months. when everyone else got sick with colds, I was fine. lol, at the questions u have to answer. some people just can absorb what they’re reading!

  16. Thanks doll, I have been looking for helpful feedback before I tried this. I am excited to see the results.. Do you have any other health tips you’d care to share?

  17. I was wondering how the coconut oil pulling helps your skin? I am trying to clear up acne problem, have tried sooo many different things since I was bout 13 years old, still suffer with oily and dry skin and continue to get acne at 45. I just starting using coconut oil after shower works great! And my 13 yr. Old German Shepherd ‘s ears, she suffers from yeast in ears and paws, it’s amazing!!! Please help with skin?! Tx

    1. I had acne in my 40s too until I went on bioidentical hormones after getting a full panel done. Lots of hormones were either way too high or way too low. May want to look into that.

  18. I was wondering if anyone else here is allergic or had sensitivity to coconut. I get hives when I eat coconut (shaved coconut), but don’t seem to have issues with products that have it in. Just wondering if anyone life me had tried it. Will the other oil have the same results?

  19. if you’re like me, one of the negative 99%, and color your own hair at home. Use coconut oil on your hair prior to coloring; leave on overnight, if you cannot leave on overnight, place on hair for at least two to three hours befor coloring. DO NOT rinse out apply color as you normally would on top of the coconut oil. Follow color instructions from here. Your hair when dry will be silky smooth and shiny! We all use a moisturizer on our face before applying make-up; this is basically the same process! I was shocker, the first time, how smooth my normally coarse hair felt. Will not color now without it! OH! If you sleep with coconut oil on, even though I wore cap, it seeped out and ruined my pillow. Cover your pillow with an old towel or possibly you have a better idea?

  20. So- how do you keep it in your mouth all that time..even 5 minutes is long enough to generate enough saliva and not to mention the oil ( you never said how much..a teaspoon, a table spoon??) to slobber all over your carpet, shoes, clothes and breakfast too!! eeuh!

  21. I add a drop or two of peppermint essential oil. Love how clean my mouth feels after and my teeth are getting whiter with regular use

  22. I tried oil pulling one time. I did it with half the amount but for twenty minutes. Withing 24 hours I was on my couch with a sore throat, fever, massive headache, and digestion problems. All of these are symptoms of oil pulling and I vowed never to do it again because it was painful. But I still want the benefits of it… is there a way way to do It and not become bedridden?

    1. After oil pulling for twenty minutes; you spit out the toxic bacteria filled oil pulled and saliva mixture and hopefully did not swallow it; usually after any kind of oil pulling session one not only spits out the the toxic bacteria laced pulled oil and saliva mixture but one also has to brush ones teeth also as well afterwards; I take the unusual additional precaution of using chlorhexidine a very potent dental disinfectant just to make sure all those nasty bacteria are truly dead and completely inertly harmless.

  23. I’ve been oil pulling for about 7 years. I switch up the oils I use … sometimes coconut, sometimes olive, etc. and use various essential oils too (thyme, oregano, clove, peppermint, spearmint). My gum health has improved significantly. My dentist thinks I’m crazy but can’t deny the incredible results.

  24. I am going to try this altho I have great teeth and no mouth problems. I do have a fungus problem on my big toe that I have been self medicating for three months. Coconut oil is ANti fungal so I use it daily. My homeopath was so impressed with my results that she is sharing it with other patients. Sea salt is another anti fungal. For my nail I use tea tree oil, fresh garlic, sea salt, hydrogen peroxide and coconut oil. I put a thin slice of garlic on in the morning with tea tree oil and cover with a bandaid. At night I do Hydrogen peroxide, tea tree oil, coconut oil and sea salt and go to bed. After losing my nail to the fungus, it is Now about two thirds back in, pink and healthy.

  25. I’ve been having terrible allergy sinus for a few years and it seemed to only be getting worse. I decided to try oil pulling with coconut oil. I haven’t taken any medication since day one. It has been approximately six weeks now. I have not taken a single pill and my allergy sinus seems to be non existent. I still sneeze but the sinus cavity and nasal passages are CLEAR! I WILL BE AN OIL PULLER FOR LIFE.

  26. Karen DeSha, how is it possible the hair dye will color over the coconut oil? doesn’t seem that it will color especially the gray.

  27. Cool !!! Above post is a pretty much amazing post. I want to thank you for this informative read. I really appreciate sharing this great. This article really contains lot more information about this topics.

  28. There is a study about coconut oil, in which coconut oil, mineral oil and sunflower oil were taken for the experiment and unsurprisingly coconut oil performs well in all the tests, coconut oil helps to hold the protein of the hair

  29. My wife had radiation treatments for oral mouth cancer. All is clear now but the healing process is slow, would this help with healing and inflation?

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