Around 10 years ago I realised there is a difference (and a big difference) in types of salt. Salt isn’t just salt, and more importantly, much of the alleged “sea salt” marketed on grocery store shelves isn’t real sea salt after all. My research enlightened me to the fact that the salt we add to our foods, in general, ought not to be perfectly white, polished and uniform. Rather, it ought to resemble the beautiful complexities and diversities of trace minerals contained by real, unrefined salt. After learning this, I began researching the subject in more depth and consequently have been including Himalayan sea salt instead of table salt in in all my cooking. Not only does it act as a flavour enhancer, it also boosts the essential minerals we as a family are consuming.
You’ve likely heard many people talk about the “dangers of getting too much salt.” While too much salt, especially refined salt, can exacerbate health problems, salt is also a crucial mineral essential to bodily functions. As in most cases, industrialized over-processing and over-refining of foods strip those foods of the nutrient, mineral and vitamin diversity found in nature. For instance, unlike refined table salt, unrefined Himalayan sea salt, as its name implies, is taken from areas of the Himalayan mountains that were once sea beds and have now become crystalized, laden with a beautiful array of trace minerals useful and necessary to our bodies.
The body uses salt to complete many basic physiological processes from absorbing nutrients to maintaining electrolyte balances, to transmitting messages from our neurons to our muscles. Since our bodies don’t produce salt, it’s critical for us to ingest it, but even more critical to consume the right type and in the right balance. Excessive salt consumption has been known to potentially lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, dehydration and even osteoporosis. This is especially true of consuming excessive table salt, which is uniform, white, refined and stripped of essential trace minerals.
Table salt is 99 per cent sodium chloride and the refinement process it undergoes often uses chemicals that our bodies consider toxic, such as Aluminum hydroxide (known to heighten the risk of Alzheimer’s disease). Using too much table salt can strain the body’s organs since the body will try to detoxify itself of table salt. In this detoxification process, the body’s cells use up precious water resources in an attempt to ionize and neutralize the excessive sodium chloride. This can lead to dehydration.
When we consume Himalayan salt, on the other hand, the 84 plus trace minerals the salt contains help our body to more effectively neutralize the sodium chloride, according to Mike Adams, editor of “Natural News.” For this reason, Himalayan salt helps the body maintain an optimal pH balance. Because Himalayan salt exists in the structural state mother nature originally intended, adding it to our diets (in moderation) can actually help us detoxify, absorb water and nutrients more effectively, as well as relieve sore muscle cramps.
The next time you’re buying your groceries, instead of re-stocking on table salt, go for those luminously pink crystals called Himalayan salt; they will not only add a more pure flavour to your cooking, but they’ll also help purify your body, and as a bonus, will beautify your spice shelf. After all, your body deserves to be given the best!
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