Salt is an awful horrible thing right? It raises blood pressure, clogs your arteries, and causes heart disease….right? … wrong… Well mostly wrong. Why has salt gotten such a bad rap?
Well if you are used to eating table salt…. then all of this is true. The white table salt that is in the majority of our packaged foods and what most of us find on our table is precisely the kind of salt that does damage to us and why we are all told to reduce our salt intake.
Why Table Salt is the Wrong Salt to Consume
Table salt, which is 97% sodium chloride, is chemically produced, bleached, and heated removing most other nutrients. In many cases it may contain processed white sugar, anti-caking agents, Fluoride, toxic levels of manufactured iodine, aluminum, and even msg.
Table Salt is created by taking natural salt and cooking it at 1200 degrees fahrenheit. Once it is heated at this temperature it starts to lose up to 80 important elements that are naturally occurring.
It’s no wonder that salt has been associated with numerous health conditions. It has been dramatically altered, had many of the balancing nutrients removed, and had toxic additives replace them. Table salt is associated with high blood pressure, kidney problems, liver problems, thyroid problems, hypertension, muscle cramps, edema, stroke, heart failure, pms, and major nervous system disorders.
Real Natural Salt
Natural Salt is a different story. The human body needs a careful balance of water, minerals, and nutrients to function properly. Salt in it’s natural form is essential in the right concentration for optimal health and function. While many believe that salt is to blame for hypertension… it is actually the proper balance of calcium, magnesium, and other minerals that improves blood pressure and hypertension… not salt reduction.
Many of the studies used to promote salt reduction fail to take into account natural salt vs table salt.
“And in 1989, researchers at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine decided to re-evaluate the link between salt and blood pressure through a study of more than 10,000 people in 52 cultures around the world. Participants ranged from Yanomamo Indians in Brazil, whose diet is almost salt free, to residents of northern China, who eat as much salt in a day as a Yanomamo eats in three years.
Instead of merely estimating salt consumption, the researchers calculated precise values based on urine samples. They took into consideration obesity and alcohol consumption.
Among their findings were that except in a few places with extremely low salt consumption, the amount of sodium in the diet was unrelated to the prevalence of hypertension in a society or to its average blood pressure. Moreover, although the high rates of hypertension in the United States had long been considered a function of this country’s love for salty processed food, the study placed Americans right in the middle of the world’s salt intake curve.”
A diet low in salt throws off the balance of essential nutrients. Granted we should all limit or eliminate our consumption of chemically processed table salt (as it can cause many of these same problems)… A diet without natural salt can result in the following conditions:
- High Blood Pressure
- Kidney Stones
- Gallbladder Stones
- Sore or swollen joints
- Brain Fog
- Poor Sleep
- Irregular heart beat
- Poor Adrenal Health
- Poor muscle tone
- Lack of coordination
- Water retention
So What Does Natural Salt Do for Us?
Real Salt not only keeps us from having the numerous problems mentioned above but also provides us with the vital balance of these minerals that we need. Although table salt causes an imbalance of fluid throughout the body, natural salt enables the body to achieve optimal fluid balance in and out of our cells.
Salt has negatively charged ions, that when combined with water, support our electrical, hormonal, and chemical balances.
- Aids in Digestion: By stimulating enzymes in the digestive tract salt enables us to get more nutrients out of the food we eat.
- Adrenal Health: Natural sea salt has been used to aid in adrenal fatigue.
- Cell Cleansing: The ions in salt allow it to cross cell membranes to remove toxins from them.
- Heart Health: The negatively charged ions in salt help stabilize the electrochemical reactions that control our heartbeat.
- PH Balance: Salt is alkalizing.
- Blood Sugar: Proper mineral balance has been shown to increase insulin sensitivity.
- Improved Sleep: Balancing trace minerals in our bodies helps balance our hormones that control our sleep cycles.
- Reproductive Health: Balancing our hormonal health increases fertility in both men and women.
- Cell Communication: Ions from salt improve the communication between cells.
- Aids in Muscle cramps/Tension: The trace minerals and ph alleviate muscle cramps.
- Bone Health: Bones contain a high percentage of salt. When we aren’t getting enough from our diet it is pulled from our bones thus resulting in osteoporosis.
- Thyroid Health: The trace minerals found in salt as well as the ph are beneficial for proper thyroid function.
- Nerve function: Our nerves need the electrical properties of salt to function properly.
- Oral health: Swishing with salt water can help remineralize teeth.
Where do we get Real Salt?
There are many natural salts available in the market… Many can even be found at your local grocery story. These may include celtic sea salt, Himalayan salt. I normally buy Redmond Real Salt.
Celtic Sea Salt: This salt is harvested from our oceans. It is unprocessed sea salt that contains the trace minerals it should.
Himalayan Salt: This salt is harvested from ancient salt deposits created long before many of our modern toxins would have corrupted it. This salt tends toward an earthy flavor. These salt deposits are found in Pakistan.
Redmonds Real Salt: This salt is harvested from an ancient sea bed in Redmond, Utah. This sea bed is also less likely to be contaminated by modern toxins because it is not attached to the ocean.
Be sure not to confuse so called sea salt with true unrefined salt. Many manufacturers label their salt “sea salt” but it is still highly refined. Instead choose a brand that offers unrefined salt that still contains trace minerals and is clear on how they process their salt.