Are Unrefined Sea Salt and Table Salt Containing Toxins?
Salt is a basic building block of life, providing many essential trace elements required for our bodies. We need salt on a daily basis, and the only problem is that we don’t know how to properly absorb it. Most of us prefer salty snacks and foods, so there’s a big market for artificial ‘salt’ – from rock salt to industrial sodium chloride. There’s also unrefined sea salt available, which is much healthier and better for you.
“Rock salt” is derived from the pores of the rocks, and is typically refined first. Unrefined salt is unprocessed and typically made by evaporating seawater into water. It’s used in cooking and baking, as well as for medical treatment. In comparison to refined salt, unrefined sea salt undergoes no chemical treatment – generally by slow evaporation or even heating – leaving behind the mineral rich qualities found in seawater. Not only does this leave behind the beneficial trace minerals found in seawater, unrefined sea salt also contains more sodium (and magnesium) than do refined alternatives.
There are several unique benefits of unrefined sea salt, including high mineral content, which is much higher than that found in table salt. As well, it contains a range of trace minerals, including potassium, magnesium, sodium, calcium, iron, and manganese. Many of these trace minerals are lacking in our diets, because our dietary magnesium and potassium intake are low relative to our sodium intake. (The average American consumes only two-thirds of the recommended daily allowance of sodium.)
In addition to minerals, unrefined sea salt contains about thirty to fifty trace amounts of iodine, including iodine and other minerals such as bromine, chlorine, sulfur, and iodine. Iodine is necessary for human life, and the levels needed vary greatly by region. However, iodine is removed from seawater by the bodies’ natural filter system. Trace amounts of iodine are present in fish, halibut, mackerel, and other seafood. Because of these trace amounts of iodine, and the fact that sea salt tends to contain a larger amount of iodine, people who consume a lot of seafood tend to have higher amounts of iodine in their systems than people who eat very little seafood.
The trace amounts of iodine also make unrefined sea salt an excellent source of the essential B vitamins. If you’re wondering how much iodine is in a teaspoon of table salt – or the amount you would need to take in order to get your body full of all the B vitamins – keep in mind that one teaspoon of table salt contains about five billionths of one teaspoon of iodine. That’s about how much iodine is in a teaspoon. So if you want to get a healthy amount of these vitamins and minerals, use unrefined sea salt instead of refined salt.
Refined salt contains a lot of different chemicals, many of which are unnecessary. One of the most common chemicals added to the salt is sodium chloride, which is a de-mineralizing agent. This salt doesn’t help to retain moisture in your body – it only makes the surface of the skin feel dry. It also attracts toxins, which it then absorbs and releases as waste. To ingest unrefined sea salt and not have it remove essential minerals from your body, you should buy kosher salt. Kosher salt contains trace amounts of iodine, potassium, calcium, iron, and many other important minerals.
The trace amounts of iodine are not enough. Experts agree that one gram of iodine will help you obtain about twenty milligrams of calcium. Unrefined sea salt contains about twenty milligrams of iodine, so you need less than one gram to benefit from this mineral. Calcium is an essential mineral that your body needs, so just one gram of iodine will give you more than you need. You should also avoid refined salt, because it contains a large amount of iodine.
There is no need for you to purchase special products to obtain trace minerals. All you need to do is make sure that the salt you’re using contains unrefined sea salt and has no additives. That’s really all you need to know. Avoid artificial additives, such as those found in processed table salt. If you can’t find unrefined sea salt on your local market, consider making your own at home.