I know, they’re the color of Cheetos
. . . and you’re probably wondering if you’re being punked right now, but I’m totally serious. As I wrote about in this post on whitening teeth naturally, some of the most unexpected ingredients brighten up pearly whites. Activated charcoal that looks like squid ink when you brush with it? Yep. Turmeric. Absolutely.
Now, maybe it’s just me, but squeezing my personal care routine between “Hey, where are your pants?” and “Why is there an ice cube in my purse?” can be a challenge, so I simplify whenever possible. When I first learned about oil pulling I dismissed it due to the time issue, but once I realized how it may benefit the oral microbiome – AND THAT I WOULDN’T HAVE TO TALK FOR THE FIRST 20 MINUTES OF EACH DAY – well, let’s just say I found the time.
One thing I’ve loved doing recently is incorporating tooth whitening turmeric in my oil pulling chews, both for its whitening and oral health supporting properties. (source) The chews themselves make the process much more convenient – I keep mine in the fridge and pop one or two in my mouth while I’m pulling supplements and breakfast together. Essential oils are optional, but they add a bit of flavor and studies suggest they may be helpful for encouraging a balanced microbiome as well!
Teeth Whitening With Oil Pulling Chews
- 1/3 cup melted virgin coconut oil
- 1/4 – 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- essential oils (see options below)
Essential Oil Options
- Spearmint essential oil – Between 15-30 drops
- Peppermint essential oil – Between 15-30 drops
- Myrhh essential oil – Between 15-30 drops
- Clove leaf essential oil – Up to 9 drops
- Clove bud essential oil – Up to 7 drops
- Cinnamon leaf essential oil – Up to 9 drops
- This Healthy Mouth blend – This blend is pre-diluted so you can use it to taste.
How To Make
Melt coconut oil and stir in turmeric and essential oils, if using. Pour mixture into individual ice cube or silicone candy trays – I use this one. Each piece should be 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon in volume.
How To Use
- When you wake up – before drinking, eating, or brushing your teeth – place one to three chews (equalling about a tablespoon) in your mouth and swish for 5-20 minutes. Longer is typically considered better, but do what works best with your schedule.
- When you’re done, spit the oil into the garbage. Don’t swallow it or spit it into the sink/toilet.
Rinse with warm water, either plain or mixed with unrefined, mineral-rich sea salt. Mineral-rich saliva contributes to tooth remineralization, which is a normal biological response to ongoing demineralization from acidic foods, etc. (source 1, source 2)
Brush and floss as normal – I use this mineral-rich tooth powder recipe or homemade tooth suds. If any turmeric powder is left on your teeth or gums it will cause a slight yellow tint, but when the turmeric is fully rinsed away you should notice a brighter, whiter smile. I personally think the tooth suds are the most effective at removing the turmeric so you can observe the final results.