Oil Pulling: Day One

a hand holding a spoon with a white substance
If you’re thinking “WTF is oil pulling?“, that was also me two days ago. Those were the exact words in my thoughts. Luckily, if was also the title of this blog post that explains what it is in detail. (I borrowed the image above from that post.)

Then I went to the Google monster and found a few other choice links:




So now, I thought I’d document my experience along the way in case anyone else is interested. Feel free to skip this little mini-series if this is like, totally not your thing. I totally understand. 🙂

After researching oil pulling articles late into the evening, I got up the next day and walked to my closest natural food store and eyed the many varieties (?!) of coconut oil. Once I found what I was looking for (organic, cold pressed, unrefined), I checked out and walked home. I was excited to get right to it.

I grabbed a teaspoon and dipped into the jar. I set a timer on my phone. Then I stuck the spoon in my mouth.

First thoughts: 

  • Wow, this stuff is kinda really solid (then it started melting)
  • OMG I’m making so much saliva!
  • God, I’m swallowing a little of it. Don’ do that!
  • OK, start swishing
  • Whoa, this is incredibly weird WTF am I doing?
  • “I’m swishing coconut oil in my mouth… with 19 more minutes to go”

It took some getting used to. I really fought the instinct to swallow all of it. The taste didn’t bother me. The texture didn’t bother me. I just didn’t want to swallow it. And I made a LOT of spit (sorry if that’s gross!).

I sat down and checked my email and tried to not think about it, swish-swish-swishing the whole way. Time seemed to pass really slowly. I tried not to dribble. I focused on making a swishing a pattern and keeping the oil moving near the front of my mouth so I wouldn’t be tempted to swallow, but not so much in the front that I might accidentally let it out.

After about ten minutes, I started getting used to it. I could feel something draining down my throat. No idea if I accidentally let some oil get back there or not. It was more challenging than I thought it would be.

Then my timer beeped! The last ten minutes went by really quickly.

I spit out the oil into the garbage. My tongue felt like it still had some stuff on it. I rinsed with warm water, then sprinkled some baking soda on my toothbrush and brushed my tongue and teeth to get anything leftover brushed off and rinsed away.

So then, yeah. Cool. Whatever, I’d swished some oil. Until an hour later.

I got the most raging freaking headache. I felt nauseous. Started sneezing. My eyes watered. I felt lethargic. I slugged through the rest of the day, sneezing, headache-y, congested, icky. I was in bed by 9pm with a full-blown cold and allergy attack.

What the hell happened to me? Did a teaspoon of coconut oil really drudge up that much crap out of my system? Was it the weather? Did I coincidentally have an allergy attack?

So… that was my first day with oil pulling. I’d be very curious to hear how others reacted after their first time.

Oh, and I’m categorizing this as “Positivity” because, in my mind, health is a positive thing. Totally.

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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Memphis, traveling, and working toward financial independence.

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