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Friday, 6 July 2012

45) SEA SALT VS ROCK SALT VS TABLE SALT. WHICH IS HEALTHIER?



Rock salt Poland
Rock salt Poland (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Sometimes when I do my research on health, I will come across articles from two learned experts giving contradicting views on the same topic. 

In this instance, salt is the subject open for debate.  It is up to you, dear readers to make your own deductions about the information that I am about to share with you.

Fancy or Plain, Salt is Salt


Mediterranean Sea Salt
Mediterranean Sea Salt (Photo credit: artizone)

The majority designer salts which include sea salt and rock salt are, like plain salt, mostly sodium chloride.
Sea salt is a favorite with gourmet cooks and are found in supermarkets, restaurants and your favorite food shows. TV chefs tells you to season, season, season but public experts tells you not to add salt at all.
So is sea salt healthy? According to Professor Bruce Neal, chair of the Australian Division of World Action on Salt says that Sea Salt are fancy salts that are just a more expensive way of doing yourself harm. So the answer is a resounding "No".
His argument is that 40 percent of the salt is sodium and it is sodium that raises your blood pressure which is a major risk factor for heart attacks and strokes. He claims he has evidence for this and it is as iron clad as the evidence for the adverse effects of tobacco.

Why give different names to salt?

Chemically similar, the various salts are made differently. 
Sea Salt Chocolate Truffles
Sea Salt Chocolate Truffles (Photo credit: SliceOfChic)
Sea salt which is also known as solar salt, is produced by evaporating seawater and harvesting the salt that is left behind.
Table salt is processed by refining sea salt to purify the sodium chloride. Rock Salt is also refined to make table salt. The difference is that rock salt is mined from inland deposits that are the remains of ancient lakes or seas.
No matter what method the salt was produced, it has no effect on our health when we eat these salts. Professor Neal also states that the only 'healthier salts' are salt substitutes that are lower in sodium as they contain a mixture of sodium chloride and potassium chloride and for taste, a little magnesium chloride is added.  Furthermore, the potassium in potassium chloride can help lower blood pressure in its own right. However, he advised that it is better to get your potassium in fresh fruit and vegetables and it is one of the reasons they are so good for you.

Health Claims are misleading

Professor Neal is of the opinion that the health claims are a con. This is an excerpt of what he said:-

Sea salt might be sold as nature's bounty – "straight from the sea" – but the health claims don't hold up. For example:
  • "Sea salt is healthier because it's sun dried and chemical free":
    Since sea salt, like table salt, is essentially sodium chloride (a chemical) it is untrue to describe it as "chemical free". The most harmful chemical in table salt is the same as in sea salt: sodium chloride.
  • "Sea salt is healthier because it's unprocessed":
    While it's generally true that unprocessed foods are much better for you, it's not in this case. Sea salt, in spite of its raw state, still raises your blood pressure.
  • "It's the minerals in sea salt that are good for you":
    Sea salt is unrefined – it contains extra minerals, like magnesium and boron, which our bodies need in minute quantities. The tiny quantities affect taste, but are only beneficial when people have deficiencies that cause disease – not the case in Australia, says Neal. Iodine deficiencies do occur in Australia, but there's no more iodine naturally occurring in sea salt than in regular salt. And in any case you can buy iodised versions of both. (Other good sources of iodine are dairy products, seafood, kelp (seaweed) and eggs. Supplements are also available.)

No added salt is still the best

English: Halite, Rock salt, Sodium chloride, N...
English: Halite, Rock salt, Sodium chloride, NaCl; Collection of the Institute of Mineralogy, University Tübingen. Used in homeopathy as remedy: Natrium chloratum / Natrium muriaticum (Nat-m.) Deutsch: Halit, Steinsalz, Natriumchlorid, NaCl; Lehr- und Schausammlung des Institutes für Mineralogie der Universität Tübingen. In der Homöopathie als Arzneimittel verwendet: Natrium chloratum / Natrium muriaticum (Nat-m.) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Avoid adding salt to your food. Whether it is
sea salt or table salt, it does not make any difference. Even onion, celery and garlic salt are also high in sodium and are no better.

However, Professor Neal acknowledged that if anything, sea salts generally coarser texture means it could be said to be less healthy. Coarse ground salt or flakes don't taste as salty on the tongue as finer particles, because of the lower surface area. So you need more salt to get the same "hit". But it is the texture rather than how the salt is made that makes the difference.

In reality, we need only about one gram of salt a day, an amount that is so minute, we could meet our daily needs almost completely from the salt that occurs naturally in foods. Even processed foods like bread, cheese and margarine will easily push our salt intake over this level. Therefore, we definitly do not need added salt as well.

Our tastebuds have been conditioned by our love for hawker food, fast food and snacks that it is working against us in the modern world. So if you cannot give up the taste of a particular salt, pink or grey, flaked or ground, be very sparing.

"Our message is not to ban salt," says Professor Neal. "But people need to think about it, and use other herbs and spices to season where they can."

Professor Bruce Neal is also Chair of Vascular Epidermiology and Prevention Medicine, The George Institute for Global Health.

We will now continue with the debate from the opposing medical expert, Dr Joseph A. Anthony. This is from an email send by a friend for sharing with you.
STRESS RELIEF. Is salt bad for hypertension?
A salt mill for sea salt.
A salt mill for sea salt. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
What is bad for hypertension is iodized salt, which is a fake salt. It
is made up of only 3 synthetic chemicals, sodium, chloride, iodine. It
takes long to dissolve in water (glistens like diamonds), does NOT dissolve in the
body, does not get through the kidneys, gives kidney stones, and raises
blood pressure. However, it is the salt favored by the synthetic
drug-based doctors who say it is very clean and sanitary, pointing to
how white it is and how it glistens like diamonds. The fake salt is
man-made in a factory. The true salt, which comes from the sea and
dried under the sun and commonly called rock salt , has 72 natural
minerals including natural sodium, chloride, iodine. It dissolves in
water, absorbed in your body, does not produce kidney
stones, and best of all brings down blood pressure and stops/prevents
muscle cramps, numbness, tingling.

If you get muscle cramps in the lower legs at night, just take ½
teaspoon of rock salt and a glass of water, and the cramps with its
horrific pain will be gone in 5 minutes. The highest BP that came my
way was in a woman who had a BP of 240/140 and came to my house at
10:30 pm on what she said was a matter of "life and death" because the
high BP was already giving her a crushing headache, especially the
back of her head. She could not walk up the 6 shallow steps to my
porch. Two men had to help her, one on each side, in addition to the
cane that she needed to prop herself up.

I muscle tested her and found that underlying her BP of 240/140 and
the crushing pain in the head, her body's water content was only 6%
(normal is 75%), salt content was zero, potassium was 96% deficient,
and cardiac output (blood flow from the heart) was only 40% (normal is
100%). So the blood supply to the head was 60% deficient.

I gave her one 6" long green hot pepper, 1 raw ripe
banana, 1/2 teaspoon of rock salt and 3, 8-oz glasses of tap water. The
pepperi was to normalize cardiac output and shoot blood to the head, the
saba banana was for the potassium deficiency and to have food in the
stomach because pepper will give a stomach ache if the stomach is
empty, and the rock salt and the water were the first aid for her
severe dehydration which was causing her arteries to be dry and stiff
and her blood to be thick and sticky, because they were dehydrated.

After 5 minutes, she said, "The pain in my head is gone." We took her
BP, it was 115/75, and cardiac output was up to 100%.

She walked out of the house to her car without the men helping her and
without the cane.

She has been taking 2.5 teaspoons of rock salt, 15 glasses of water, 6
Saba bananas and 3 of the long peppers daily since the beginning of
September 2009, and her BP and cardiac output have been normal since
then.

Two months later, in November, at a PCAM round table forum on
hypertension in Club Filipino, she gave her testimony, followed by her
brother who said that she grew 2", because the salt and the water had
refilled her compressed disc spaces in her vertebral column. The disc
spaces had become compressed because they had become dehydrated since
the fluid filling up these discs are 95% water.

Why salt? Because without salt the body cannot retain water no matter
how much water is drunk. You will still be dehydrated because you will
just keep urinating and sweating the water out.

This is not an isolated case. When BP is rising high but there is
little or no headache but there is stiffness of shoulder and neck
muscles, all you need to normalize the BP and remove the stiffness and
the pain in 5 minutes is 1/2 teaspoon of rock salt and 3 glasses of
water. If there is crushing pain in the head, it means blood supply to
the head is lacking, and you will need the hot peppers to normalize it and
shoot blood to the head and remove the extreme pain.

PLEASE SHARE, IT MAY HELP SOMEONE

DR.JOSEPH A. ANTONY (FRCS(C); FICS; FAAS)
Urologist & General Surgeon
Consultant: St.Philomena's Hospital, Florida, USA.
Former Professor: St.John's Medical College, California, USA.
Former Medical Director: St.Philomena's Hospital, Florida, USA.
1715, BRUNTON ROAD., FLORIDA.
An image of a grain of table salt taken using ...
An image of a grain of table salt taken using a scanning electron microscope. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Now that that you have heard the opinions from both medical experts on , it is up to you to decide which recommendations you want to follow. 

My next topic for discussion is, "Do It Yourself Facial Massage."


You may also like to read:

I have also found a website that shows you how to make herb salt. Click on this link to find out more. How to make herb salt.


MY ART CORNER

This is one of my earliest drawings. An attempt to draw ice and glass effect. Hope you like it.

Thanks for looking and taking the time to read my blog.  I welcome feedback and please feel free to share your experiences in relation to today's topic.

Until my next post, "Here's to your health!"



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2 comments:

Hi I welcome your comments and sharing on the topic that I have posted.