December 21, 2013

Coconut Oil: Solid, Liquid…Gross. ~ Alicia Wozniak

This stuff is gross.

Sure, it can be used in cooking and is supposed to be awesome as far as health benefits, but this stuff is just gross texturewise.

I’m nearly 41 years old and as I age, my teeth are yellowing. In my family not only are we cursed with zero calf muscle definition, but our teeth suck. At least mine do. I got jipped on everything. Height, boobs…okay, well, that’s it.

I’ve done the teeth whitening strips and gels in the past and they worked, but damn, peroxide on your teeth is kind of painful. I gave those up years ago. My addictions to espresso and Pepsi have maintained, however, and have only helped the darkening of my teeth.

A friend of mine who takes my class has amazingly white teeth. I asked her after class, “What’s the deal?”

She explained that she “swishes” with coconut oil. It not only whitens your teeth, but it’s also supposed to “pull” toxins out of your body and kind of cleanse everything. Okay—I think I need an exorcism to cleanse things, but I’m up for anything that might lighten the hue of yellowish-brown I’m currently sporting.

Seriously, I catch me smiling back at myself in the mirror during class and my teeth match my skin. Not cool. I’m super white, but not porcelain, like I’d like my teeth, so something’s got to give as far as the teeth and I need to work on my tan. I am a Floridian, for crap’s sake.

I was thinking coconut oil was going to be like any oil; a liquid. Nope.

I bought my canister of it at the Wal-Mart, surrounded by folks waiting on the Pharmacy. An older lady stared at me while I looked over the opaque jar. I was happy to find it there since that’s where I buy pretty much everything. I picked up some snacks too and probably milk. I shook the container expecting to hear a swooshing sound like you would if you picked up any liquid. Nope. Nothing. I shrugged, paid for my stuff, and went home.

I opened the container at home and had the confused dog face.

It’s like Crisco with a great big loogie in it; kind of watery and a little broken down, but mostly solid. It doesn’t smell like coconut at all which is good because I don’t like coconut. I mean, I wish I liked it like I wish I liked yogurt and cream cheese, but I just don’t. My palette says, “No.” My friend assured me it didn’t taste like coconut either and I prayed I didn’t have some secret allergy to coconut since I rarely eat it on purpose.

I added a spoon to my toothbrush cup and decided instead of “swishing” a teaspoon of this stuff every morning, I’d do it at night since every morning I grab a coffee and what’s the point of whitening your teeth if you’re just going to turn around within an hour and dirty them, right? Right.

The first night I was apprehensive.

I opened the container and stared at the semi-solid stuff. I sniffed it again and gave the “here goes.” I shoveled a teaspoon into my pie hole and almost puked. The texture is horrible.

My gag reflex was not happy.

All the posts I’ve read about coconut oil pulling instruct the person to do this on an empty stomach. My friend assures me it’s to help with the removal of toxins. I’m convinced the lack of contents in your belly is to prevent you from hurling all over your vanity.

I resisted the urge and swished this semi-solid that does eventually go totally liquid with a hint of not so liquid within moments of being warmed for about a minute. You’re supposed to swish for anywhere between five and 30 minutes. No way. No can do. I spat it out and brushed my teeth and fast as possible.

I’m a few weeks into the routine and am up to about two minutes. I’ve done the coconut oil swish every night except one because I fell asleep on the couch. I’m not sure it’s doing anything, but because I’m making the effort, I’ve cut down on my beloved mochas (my bank account thanks me) and I’ve also 86’d Pepsi / dark colas. So, the basic math is, I’m not really contributing to the darkening of my teeth and maybe this coconut oil is helping.

I floss and brush regularly anyway. I have lovely gums.

Do I feel any cleaner? This stuff is supposed to clean the toxins from within the body. Nope, but I’m still new.

This evening I scooped up a teaspoon, placed it in my mouth (there is no way to write that to not make it sound dirty) and damn near barfed. It’s part of the routine. I had been watching TV and decided I’d try for five minutes. I sat down on my Big Red Chair.

The Dingo, my dog, jumped up to cuddle with me, I thought. Nope. Her bat hearing picked up the swishing noise I was making. She was all in my face; nostrils flaring, “Lady, what are you doing?” I almost spit the stuff all over myself laughing. I couldn’t breathe. A recent cold in control of my head decided now would be a good time for a runny nose too. I made a beeline for the bathroom, purged the grossness from my mouth, dry heaved, laughed, and brushed.

The Dingo followed me.

I hope this is all worth it and my teeth are whiter as a result. It is lovely to use on dry skin!

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Editor: Bryonie Wise

Photo: elephant journal archvies

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