Self-Care Tip #2: Coconut Oil, Meet Mary Poppins!

We all have bacteria in our mouths, and many people suffer—sometimes unknowingly—from systemic oral infections. Gingivitis (gum disease) and periodontal disease are our most prevalent forms of microbial infection. Left unchecked, they kill. Who among us was not touched by the story of Deamonte Driver, a 12-year old from Prince George’s County who lacked access to dental care and whose untreated tooth abscess led to his death following an infection that spread to his brain?

Aside from the usual tips—brushing and flossing after meals—there’s a fairly easy way to clear up oral infections and, in the process, actually protect other areas of the body, including the brain and heart, and turn around certain illnesses.

The way is oil pulling, which comes from Ayurvedic medicine and is an old method. Various oils have been used over time, but coconut oil works best, says Bruce Fife, N.D. in Stop Alzheimer’s Now! How to Prevent and Reverse Dementia, Parkinson’s, ALS, Multiple Sclerosis, and Other Neurodegenerative Disorders. (Fife also has published a book specifically on coconut oil pulling.)SpoonfulCoconutOil

Just a Spoonful of Coconut Oil…

First thing in the morning, before breakfast, put a spoonful of coconut oil into your mouth and begin to swish it around. Don’t gargle! You do this for 15 to 20 minutes. Although this seems like a long time, it goes quickly when combining this with other things. Oil pulling has worked best for me when I’ve combined the swishing with washing pans or preparing breakfast or lunch. Just like the oil in your car’s engine, the coconut oil “sucks up bacteria, toxins, pus, and mucous,” says Fife. When finished swishing, spit the oil into the trash—do not swallow! Spitting it into the sink may clog the drain over time.

You can use oil pulling two or three times a day. Just make sure you do it before meals on an empty stomach.

Taking oil into the mouth this way will certainly feel uncomfortable at first. But stick with it, for at least a week. People who have done oil pulling have reported seeing progress, a little every day.

2 thoughts on “Self-Care Tip #2: Coconut Oil, Meet Mary Poppins!

    • Hi, Brynn!

      Thank you for your question. Yes, you “pull” the oil before brushing and before eating breakfast. A tongue scraper also helps to remove any bacteria that have collected overnight.


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