Oil Pulling: Safe, Simple and Effective!

Last Modified on Apr 15, 2014

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General Feedback

Approval Ratings
YEA (123)
NAY (5)

[SIDE EFFECTS]  03/31/2012: Dorothy from San Francisco, Ca: "I've been oil pulling for five months, and I've noticed an increasing heart rate, which got up to around 95 bpm at the most. Usually my heart rate is around 65-72 bpm. I've felt increased energy and have lost weight, even more than I would like. After my heart rate shot up, I quit OPing altogether for a about a week and a half and am now OPing every few days. I realize that I could be going through a healing crisis, but how long do these crises usually last? I've had difficulty sleeping and feel very fidgety frequently. I don't understand it. Can anyone shed light on this? I want to continue OPing, but I don't want my heart rate to be out of control. I'm nearing 60 years of age. Thanks for any feedback!"

EC: Hi Dorothy, what type of oil are you using?

03/31/2012: Dane from Portland, Or replies: "I have a similar question, I'm a 26 year old male in very good health, but ever since moving back to Portland, OR (cloudy wet and rainy) 3 years ago I have had sinus congestion and seasonal allergies pretty badly (I struggled with these issues as a child here as well throughout the grey winters and into spring). I started oil pulling and am now on day 7, the first four days I had really red eyes and heavier bags than usual every morning, which I assumed were detox symptoms and now the past three days I have had an increased heart rate with palpitations upon any activity, restlessness and minor abdominal pains. I have been taking some organic food-based vitamins with probiotics and making sure to drink plenty of fluids and electrolytes, but don't want to overconsume any minerals. Are these normal symptoms?

I have been alternating sunflower and EVCO every morning.

I feel great every year by the end of summer so I think there may be some sort of seasonal deficiency that I suffer from, but I wanted to get on top of this if I am going to live here any longer. Should I keep OPing? Are symptoms I am experiencing very unusual?"

04/01/2012: Dorothy from San Francisco, CA replies: "Hi Dane, I have the same problem, an increased heart rate with OPing. I haven't found much info on it. I use ________ organic coconut oil, and I'm wondering if I ought to use another one. I'm afraid that my blood pressure has also gone up, although I haven't taken it. I've had to cut way down on OPing. I used to OP daily, each morning for five months, but I had to stop for awhile, and now I'm only doing it twice a week. My heart rate actually went up to around 95, and it's usually in the 60-72 range. I'm also having heart palpitations. I keep researching for answers. I don't want to stop OPing as it does give me increased energy and is a mood enhancer, but I don't like having a rapid heart rate."
04/02/2012: Dorothy from San Francisco, Ca replies: "Hi EC, Thanks for responding to my post! I've been using ____ Organic Coconut Oil."
04/02/2012: Hope from Sacramento, California replies: "Hi Dorothy -You may want to try sesame or sunflower oil for pulling. More than once, when I pulled with coconut oil, my blood pressure went sky high. Although it made my teeth much whiter than op-ing with other oils, it did not agree with my heart.....

I still, after more than a year, pull only with sesame and sunflower oil without side effects."

04/04/2012: Dorothy from San Francisco, Ca replies: "Thank you, Hope, for your suggestion! I did buy some sesame oil to oil pull with originally, then opted for coconut oil. I wonder what it is about the coconut oil that causes rapid heart rate and sky-high blood pressure? I didn't take my blood pressure as it scared me just having a 95 bpm heart rate."
04/04/2012: Mvo from Johannesburg, South Africa replies: "Please google "the pulse test" you may find the answer to your question."
05/12/2012: Seeker from Tampa, Fl replies: "95 heartbeat is nothing. I was put on heart monitor for a day because of the stress and palpatations I was getting. My heart rate was shooting up over 160 several times a day. No wonder it felt uncomfortable. I am only in my 30s."

[BETTER BUT WITH SIDE EFFECTS]  03/28/2012: Jenn from Toronto, Ontario Canada: "Thanks to all who contribute to this wonderful site and for giving me the gift of oil pulling. I originally started oil pulling to rid myself of a sinus infection. I am a bit wary of antibiotic overuse and big pharma in general (my family thinks I am a conspiracy theorist, LOL! ). After reading testimonials and instructions I decided to use one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil with two drops of tea tree oil for about 5-10 minutes. I was ill and didn't have cocunut oil in the house and didn't feel like going out to source it. Within two treatments I noticed teeth whitening and what seemed to be what I can only describe as pinkening and tightening of the gums. I had been diagnosed with gingivitis for many years by my dentist. My sinus condition seemed to worsen with more and more discharge and swelling. I smoked cigarettes for about 30 years, and I suddenly had an aversion to smoking. I then developed a terrible cough with lots of mucous, difficulty breathing, terrible headaches, fatigue, body aches, sticky eyes, pimples and a gum infection from heck! The gum infection was raging and I tried all the home remedies on Earth Clinic and only seemed to worsen it. I became very scared and my friends convinced me to stop oil pulling go to the hospital. I got two kinds of antibiotics and used multiple pain killers for one week. They seemed to suppress the symptoms but after I finished the doses the gum infection came back even worse than before with swelling on my cheek and lip. A lot of people told me to go an get a root canal or tooth extraction, neither of which seemed to fit with my idea that gums and teeth can heal like broken bones. There were sores and pimple like outbreaks on both my gums and cheeks. I realized that I was going through some type of cleansing/healing crisis and I needed to let it run its course, although others around me thought I would eventually expire from a septic type infection. Interestingly, the site of the gum infection was a previously identified weaker spot.

I didn't restart oil pulling immediately, as I now know that EVOO and Tea Tree Oil mixes (probably the same for other oil and oregano etc mixes) are very potent at drawing out infection and impurities. I used salt/alum poultice, baking soda/salt poultices (use with cotton balls for about 20 minutes, more and your skin will get raw) and rinses, I also got rid of regular toothpaste and started using hydrogen peroxide/baking soda/salt paste. I alternated this with raw garlic clove rubbings and garlic clove/water rinses.

Don't kid yourselves, these remedies hurt worse than childbirth but I felt that this was a bad infection that needed a multi prong approach. If you can, use aspirin rather than ibuprofen or tylenol, I tried all three but something in the aspirin seems to help the healing process. I also used tea bags between the cheek and gum to absorb any pus and blood that came out of the sore area. Use the black bags, they are more effective than other types, I tried peppermint, chai, green tea but found the old fashioned black to be best. As soon as I felt some improvement in the level of swelling, it took about one week, I resumed oil pulling with EVOO and tea tree and took epsom salt baths (rinse afterward).

One more week later, I can say that my gum infection is almost completely gone, my teeth are whiter, stronger and my gums seem to have regenerated. My sinuses and chest are clear and I feel that my energy is greater than before all of this happened. I have taken the tea tree out of my oil pulling regime (twice a day) as I feel it's probably more like an antibiotic. I also think that Ted's simple alkalizing formula (baking soda, lemon juice) will help me avoid many infections in the future so I started that process as well. I also haven't had any cigarettes since I started oil pulling one month ago. OP has the potential for unleashing the remnants of all of your previous ailments and big pharma treatments so if I had to do it again I would not start with EVOO and no Tea Tree, I would get the coconut, and backing off the pulling when the body becomes a bit overwhelmed is perfectly fine. Sorry for the long post, just wanted everyone to know that sometimes the healing crisis is very terrible and you will feel sick and lonely, but it is well worth it to go through to the other side. Thanks Again."

03/13/2012: Shari from Cumberland, Va: "Hi could someone please post on how to do oil pulling? I LOVE this site. I jus found it and already am trying out remedies. I am interested in oil pulling for gingivitis. Thank you so much."

03/09/2012: Mavanou from N.y: "I am so happy to have found your site. I was having a toothache and pain all around my gums. I read about oil pulling and decided to try it for a couple of days. My toothache and gum pains were gone. However, I stopped for a few days because I was having some pain on my right side starting in the front around the liver area and radiating to the kidneys.

Since, I was also doing hydrogen peroxide, so I am not sure which was creating the effect.

I just slowly started oil pulling again using coconut oil and the pain is less. I will try to use black seed oil for op in the future to see if there is any difference.

Thank you so much for your site and for sharing your knowledge."

01/28/2012: Dispenser4hire from Amarillo, Tx Usa: "I 1st heard about oil pulling at this site a few days ago. The given explanation makes no sense to me. It seemed to be a totally safe procedure so I tried it with VOO. I will readily admit that my teeth and mouth felt incredibly clean. Perhaps bacteria designed for an aqueous environment are killed by emersion in a lipid (oil). I will continue to do this for the next few weeks to see the result.

The oil turning white is simply the oil, and saliva forming an emulsion from the physical action of sucking it through the teeth.

I do not know that metals are particularly soluble in oil. We certainly didn't cover that in any of the chemistry classes I have taken. The concept of pulling toxins out of the body from under the tongue seems far-fetched to say the least. Yes some drugs can enter the body sublingually, but in minute doses.

I could believe that some health effects could be from reducing the bacteria, and resultant load of toxins in the mouth, but the given explanation is not something I can believe.

If it makes sense to you, that is totally your decision. I am interested in alternative therapies, and I am sure many of them are effective. The explanations for why they work are often very misleading. …. In my opinion"

01/29/2012: Francisca from Zug, Switzerland replies: "I fully agree with you! I do oil pulling at times like now when my gums are irritated and I think that it is a good exercise for your mouth but I don't believe that it would cure illnesses! I think that the cures talked about on this site and others are more a placebo effect! Sorry, but this is the way I have always viewed it! I think that it is useful and it may indeed have some effect on your gums and teeth, that I don't deny, even because of the massage you do on your gums but people having allergies and all kinds of strong side effects from it.... I think that this is all imagination! Please don't be cross but oil pulling toxins from your body, people feeling depressed, allergies being cured..... Sorry but that can't be true! Like you I am also a big fan of alternative therapies but things are as they are! Who on earth can feel depressed because they swish oil around in their mouths, no matter the type of oil....."
01/29/2012: Liz from Boston, Massachusetts replies: "Francisca - It certainly makes sense that 'pulling' harmful bacteria from our mouths will keep it from entering our system/affecting our organs. And who knows what is possible in terms of cures without that harmful bacteria. You certainly don't, despite your assertion to the contrary.

You're basically saying that people like Ted, Dr. Deepak Chopra, etc. Are quacks. Just because something doesn't work for you, doesn't mean it won't for someone else. And just because you can't wrap your brain around the idea of oil pulling curing anything, doesn't mean that it can't. It just means that you don't understand it.

I don't understand why ACV lowered my blood pressure to where I don't have to take med's anymore, but I do know that it worked. It wasn't a "placebo effect". The numbers don't lie. And, I suspect the same is true for those who oil pull.

You don't have to agree with everyone's testimonials, but you should at least respect them."

01/31/2012: Cat from Papamoa, New Zealand replies: "I'm not really sure any of us understand how it works. We just know it DOES. I wouldn't be without OP now, I do it probably 5 days a week and I can't tell enough people how much different I feel. I'm keen to go to the dentist and get him to take a look at my teeth just for the hell of it!!"
01/31/2012: Timh from Louisville, Ky, Usa replies: "I'm in the affirmative group on this one. I began OP last of Aug 2011 w/ my health having been deteriorating consistently since 2009; and hitting some real lows especially because I have limited support and live alone. In desperation I began reading E.C. site for anything that might help me in any way. "Oil Pulling, proly not" was my skeptical reasoning despite open-mindedness and desperation. Completely out of solutions I tried the OP w/ Canola Oil once then twice daily and regained the long lost ability to fall asleep before daybreak. I continued a temporary major recovery of daily functions over a period of about 1 mo then tapered back down as it appeared my condition was too severe for only OP. Unfortunately for me, I never read about the need for extra mouth sanitation especially for individuals like myself who are infected w/ multiple chronic pathogens. I'm afraid my teeth have suffered some loss, but of course I am dealing w/ that. I also felt heavy metal releasing during many of the OP sessions as I have very high Manganese levels confirmed by hair analysis. The sensation (which has been common for yrs) feels like electrocution especially thru the legs and feet.

My theory on pulling is that it's simply an oral Oil method of chelation. Since many heavy metals, biological pathogens, and chemical toxins are lipophilic, the oil reservoir established in the mouth (I always get almost as much as I can hold) forces those toxins from a lipo gradient of lesser value and "pulls" them to the reservoir of greater value, much like a crowed pool of Salmon or Trout brave all obstacles to make it to the spacious unpopulated lake upstream. It's not an issue of "solubility" as an EC poster viewed it but of molecular weight & mass. Not an issue of "dissolve" but of "attachment". All of course IMHO.

I pull once a day now w/ good results (I can actually feel a very strong pull from my liver/pancreas region). I do back-to-back pull, both for about 20 min as this seems to be a stronger method than way apart times.

"Love is the only answer - hate is the root of cancer" --YES"

04/27/2012: Katy from Roanoke, Va replies: "In response to: Francisca from Zug, Switzerland, I find it arrogant to claim that thousands of years of proven eastern medicine is a "placebo" because you personally don't understand it. Yes, there is a potent mind-body connection, the effect of this type of healing is beyond a chemistry class, and beyond typical western understanding in general. Be careful before you discount these types of remedies as nonsense. You say these people's messages "can't be true", how on earth could you know that to make such a definitive statement? Try to rid yourself of preconceptions and you may gain some insight as well as a healthy body and mind! You say you are a "fan" of alternative medicine, but you only gain half the helpful effects with such a negative mindset."
[YEA]  06/25/2012: Gina from San Bernardino, Ca replies: "I started OPing 8 days ago. I'm amazed! My gums are firmer..... My teeth are tighter, they're whiter! I feel like I get my teeth cleaned daily by my hygenist. I actually love smiling big! Before I began OPing, I had a web of loose skin inside my mouth, It felt nasty. Since I've been OPing, that is gone!! Today, my lips and face feel dry. I don't know if it's from the OPing or because I've been using coconut oil on my skin as a moisturizer. I OP with sesame oil. Sometimes, I put a drop of orange oil essence to give the oil a different flavor. I believe OPing is an excellent method for preventative medicine. I know this isn't in my head. Too many people are all saying the same thing. What would be the benefit for all these people on all the sites on OPing to say how it's working for them, if it really wasn't? Sometimes, certain methods aren't for everyone and that's okay! I just know it works for me and that's my story and I'm sticking with it!!"

01/03/2012: Anwar from Kuwait, Kuwait: "Hello, I'm interested in trying oil pulling! I have amalgams in my mouth. Is it ok to oil pull while having them?

I was reading about oil pulling on the Baseline of Health Foundation (link below) and one of the replies was about having side effects of oil pulling while having amalgams.

http://www.jonbarron.org/detox/nl110404/oil-pulling-strong-immunity?page=2&utm_source=iContact&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Jon Barron&utm_content=

Please let me know what you think. And thank you in advance Ted for your reply :)"

12/31/2011: Estelle from Toronto, Ontario: "Does anyone know if it is safe to do OP during pregnancy? I have avoided doing any type of cleanse during pregnancy because I do not want to expose my unborn baby to any stirred-up toxins in my body. Does anyone have any advice on this?"

[YEA]  12/28/2011: Modern Medicine Maiden from Victoria, Bc, Canada: "I have discovered this website and after reading about oil pulling (and researching on other websites) I decided to try it.......... After two weeks I need to share my story.

I was diagnosed 10 years ago with a tumor/goiter on the right side of my thyroid that was noticeable in size. Oddly enough the left side is trying to compensate for it so my specialist and I decided to just leave it be and I would monitor its size and my well being (noticing any changes to my health) so after several years of blood tests etc.... I am now on yearly monitoring. Seems to be fine but the size has never changed. No matter what kind of cleanse or supplement I did. I just thought it was my little pet to carry around with me. Now I need to mention that I eat very healthy clean whole foods as I am sensitive to a lot of things (thanks goodness my body has a natural defense to all the bad stuff, makes it easier to say no! ). And then I decided to try oil pulling!!!!!!!!!!! The first day I had an awful metallic taste in the back of my throat. From the second day on I would expel a considerable amount of phlegm a few times after I had spit out the oil, IT'S SHRINKING!!!!! I have also had a slight breakout on my chin that happens to line up with my thyroid and only on the affected side so I know its pulling upwards. I honestly think that the doctor may even miss it if I had a routine check up. Not to mention my teeth are so much whiter! I am honestly telling everyone I love because this is so easy! I am fortunate to have seen direct results so I am absolutely convinced that this is another practice that I will incorporate into my daily regime for the rest of my life! Just try it..... Sesame oil, 2 tsp, empty tummy, 20 min and swish-n-spit away your potential future diseases down the drain!"

10/17/2012: Rachel from Franklinville, Ny replies: "I am hoping to start oil pulling with sesame oil tomorrow. I'm reading a lot of great reviews on this but am wondering if anyone out there has reversed bulgy vericose veins by oil pulling?"

12/23/2011: Clara from Salvador, Bahia, Brazil: "Dear Ted, I have been doing Oil Pulling for about 10 days and I would like to know which oil is more recommended to treat Candidiasis and Herpes Simplex. Also, should I use refined or unrefined oil? Since I live in the Tropics, I have easy access to Natural Coconut Oil which is more affordable than other Extra Virgin Vegetable Oils. Would you recommend doing OP with Natural Coconut Oil in my case? Also, I have had a radioactive treatment for my hyperthyroidism so I am now on Synthroid for the rest of my life. Any contrindication with that? Many thanks in advance!!!"

12/21/2011: Brooke from Hammond, La, Usa: "Hi, I have been oil pulling with Sunflower oil for 6 days. I haven't seen any of the benefits yet, in fact I feel worse at the moment. I hope this will get better.

The question I have is what if a person wears dentures, will oil pulling help them? My mother has copd, congestive heart failure, back problems, high blood pressure and many more illnesses, but she wears dentures and I was wondering if oil pulling would benefit her.

Also, I take astaxanthin, krill oil and vitamin D3, is it okay to take this with oil pulling?"

12/19/2011: Jane from Tenneesee, Usa: "I started doing this as per instructions found on this website. Upon doing further research, I found a different way. This site says to do the oil pulling after brushing teeth. The other site says to do it before brushing. So which way is the correct way? Does it matter?

I will say, among the many ailments I have, one is insomnia. I slept like a baby the first nite I started. Haven't noticed improvements of any other ailment as of yet."

12/20/2011: Courtney from Granite Bay, Ca replies: "To Jane from Tennessee - What oil are you pulling with? I suffer from insomnia as well, and am hoping that if I use the same oil as you do, I might benefit similarly."

11/27/2011: Nana from Rowlett, Texas, United States: "For the oil pulling what kind of sunflower oil, sesame oil do you use? Are you talking about just buying the oil that is 100% in the cooking aisle and /or some type of oil at health food store concentrated?"

11/27/2011: Stella from Havelock, Ontario, Canada replies: "The best type of Oil for Oil Pulling is Coconut Oil.

Bonnie in Canada"

11/25/2011: Irene from Nyc, Ny: "I have a permanent mouth retainer in the back of my top front teeth (going across 6 front teeth in total) going on 15 years now. I've been reading here on the forums that some people had their fillings come out with this treatment, is there a possibility it could loosen my retainer? It's wired and dental glued so I want to make sure before continuing treatment. This is my second day on this OP using refined organic sunflower oil."

11/25/2011: Irene from Nyc, Ny: "I am using this treatment so it can clear up some dryness and tightness I'm experiencing on the inside of my mouth. It feels tight on the inside center of cheeks and where the inside corners of the mouth meet. I was using a new toothpaste last month and I think I was allergic to an ingredient so I stopped using it."



Our readers offer information and opinions on Earth Clinic, not as a substitute for professional medical prevention, diagnosis, or treatment. Please consult with your physician, pharmacist, or health care provider before taking any home remedies or supplements or following any treatment suggested by anyone on this site. Only your health care provider, personal physician, or pharmacist can provide you with advice on what is safe and effective for your unique needs or diagnose your particular medical history.