How to Oil Pull + Oil Pulling Benefits


Since filming this video, I’ve discovered an amazing product from Aviva Pure that has coconut oil in packets with peppermint essential oils. HELLO! So much more convenient and tastier because of the peppermint added. You’ve got to try it.

Click right here to check it out!

Bad breath. One of the worst symptoms to be plagued with, right?

Unfortunately breath can get worse as we grow older. It’s just one more awesome side effect of aging, right up there with weight gain and female mustaches!

Fortunately, there’s a simple remedy using a common ingredient (likely on your pantry shelf right now) that helps with this embarrassing condition.

Video Transcript

What the heck is oil pulling?

Mariah here, from, your busy mom headquarters to help you love the skin you’re in and today we’re talking about oil pulling:  what it is and how to do it.

Oil pulling began in India, 1,ooo’s of years ago and is used as a form of detox.

The theory is, when you swish a high quality oil around in your mouth, it “pulls” germs and toxins in the mouth that otherwise would leak into the bloodstream, which in turn, could affect the entire body.

I’ll be honest. I had a hard time finding scientific evidence that oil pulling helps prevent or cure diseases in any way.


A couple studies showed that oil pulling could:

  • reduce plaque
  • improve bad breath and gingivitis
  • kill bacteria

So if anything, it does appear that oil pulling CAN improve oral health.

Of course, I had to try it out for myself and I’ve been oil pulling for almost a year now, and have noticed my dental hygienist doesn’t need to scrape as much.

Some people have reported experiencing significant detox reactions with oil pulling such as:

  • headaches
  • bloating
  • gas
  • fever
  • chills

So if you decide to give it a go, be aware of that.

Let’s get to it!

{see video demo on how oil is able to clean makeup brushes vs. water}

The best time to oil pull is right away in the morning before you eat or drink anything.  Since I work out first thing in the morning, I oil pull at night before bed.  Hey, it may not be the best time, but I’m still o.k. with good.

Start with a high quality oil.  Sesame oil is popular but I prefer coconut oil because it has anti-viral, anti-fungal and antibacterial properties.

To oil pull, you place 1-2 teaspoons of oil in your mouth and swish it around for 20 minutes.  This is long enough to pull out toxins, but short enough that your body won’t re-absorb them. That’s the theory anyway.

Once the 20 minutes is up, you spit the oil out in the garbage and brush your teeth, easy peazy.

Now, I have an optional bonus step for you.  Add 3 drops of oregano oil to your coconut oil—just make sure it’s food quality oregano oil.

Oil of oregano is anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-microbial so you get more bang for your buck, and who doesn’t want that?

Now I want to hear from you!

Do YOU oil pull?  If not, are you willing to give this a try?

Let me know in the comments below.

Cheers to your health,


  1. Joy

    I’ve got to admit I don’t oil pull. I tried it a long time ago and nearly gagged each time and kept running into problems. Here are some obstacles that maybe you can address:
    How do you keep from swallowing the oil?
    Swishing for 20 mins is an eternity to mouth muscles-seriously, my mouth hurt after a few mins.
    I found my kids got really frustrated when I couldn’t talk to them-frankly 20 mins is an eternity to them too.

    Ultimately, I decided that the oral health benefits gained from oil pulling can also be achieved through regular brushing, flossing and generally good eating habits. And as you mentioned, I also had a difficult time finding scientific evidence of the other health claims. Therefore, oil pulling is not for me.

    • Mariah Dolan

      Joy, thanks for your comments. I’m happy to address the obstacles you’ve found while oil pulling.

      #1. If you find it difficult to not swallow the oil, more than likely you’ve started with too much. As you hold the oil in your mouth, saliva gets added to it creating a really FULL feeling as the 20 minutes progresses. My recommendation would be to start with 1/2 teaspoon of oil and see if that triggers the gag reflex.

      #2. Instead of using your mouth muscles to swish around the oil, try using your tongue inside to push the oil around. This will save those jaw muscles from getting sore.

      #3. I totally get it with the kids. When I first started oil pulling they were frustrated too when I couldn’t speak to them. So in order to communicate with them, I had to be really animated—jumping around and using large hand gestures. They thought it was hilarious. Now, they’re so used to it that all I have to do is hold up one finger to signal I’m oil pulling and they’ll say, “okay, talk to you when you’re done.”

      And yes, I scoured the internet trying to find whether or not oil pulling had any great health benefits and only found a few studies that showed it helped with bad breath, gingivitis etc.—basically oral health in general. There are many claims that it can cure some chronic diseases but I have yet to find any scientific evidence to back those claims.

  2. Janet

    I have occasionally done oil pulling with coconut oil. I’m going to start doing it regularly for a while because I recently had root canaled tooth pulled and am hoping it will help it to heal along with warm salt water rinses and the antibiotic I need to take for the infection. Hoping this is getting me one step closer to another root cause of some long term health problems. 😉 Love the videos, Mariah! Keep it up!

    • Mariah Dolan


      So sorry to hear about the root-canaled-pulled-tooth—ouch!

      And yes, root canals are a strange phenomenon in that I keep reading articles linking root canals to chronic disease and ailments. I’m not sure how root canals affect other systems—but there’s certainly compelling evidence.

      Much luck to you uncovering the cause of some long term health problems. That’s always a relief!

      I’m going through something similar now and just got back a ton of lab results today—incredibly eye-opening to say the least. I’ll share all the details in my next blog post, so stay tuned.

      P.S. In your case I would definitely throw in some oil of oregano during oil pulling for it’s added anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. A little goes a loooooong way—you only need a couple drops 😉

  3. Stacie

    I just started oil pulling and the other day about 2 weeks in I woke up with a canker sore in the back of my throats and a fever that lasted 2 days. So I have stopped pulling. Do you think I should continue and do you think it’s due to the pulling ornjust considebtal?

    • Mariah Dolan

      Hi Stacie,

      Great question. I doubt the oil pulling created the canker sore, but I’d definitely encourage you to consult with your doctor if you have any worries.

      Best of luck!


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