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Health Benefits of Sea Salt

Kanika Khara Mar 10, 2019
Sea salt is obtained after the evaporation of seawater. This write-up will throw light on the difference between table salt and unrefined salt along with health benefits of unrefined sea salt.
Sea salt, which is also referred to as solar salt or bay salt, is manufactured by evaporation of seawater. It is mined from the underground salt beds that form due to drying up of salt-water lakes.
While the production of table salt as well as sea salt involves the process of evaporation, the difference in their taste and texture results from the industrial processes that are followed for making table salt.

How is Table Salt Different from Sea Salt

There is not much difference when it comes to the chemical composition and nutritional value of these two, however, the taste and texture of table salt differs due to heavy processing that is involved. The sodium chloride crystals that are obtained after various stages of evaporation are washed, kiln-dried and bleached.
While processing, trace minerals are also removed with the debris. Table salt also has certain additives and anti-caking agents that makes it free-flowing. However, unrefined salt is coarse. The trace minerals present in saline water are retained in unrefined salt. Some people prefer using natural or unrefined salt in their food due to its flavor.

Is Sea Salt a Better Alternative to Table Salt?

Sea salt has been marketed as a healthier alternative to the heavily processed table salt. The health benefits that are stated by its promoters are attributed to the fact that it is pure and contains trace minerals such as sulfate, calcium, magnesium, potassium, bromide, bicarbonate, strontium, borate, and fluoride.
Unlike the iodized table salt, the naturally-occurring sea salt may contain iodine in negligible amounts. The advocates of sea salt say that the body's requirements of iodine can be met by consumption of certain food items. The main argument in favor of unrefined salt is that it is not processed and doesn't contain additives and anti-clumping agents.
There's no denying the fact that sea salt can impart a nice flavor and texture to food. Some believe that people on a low-salt diet should opt for this natural salt as lesser amount of unrefined salt can impart more flavor when compared to refined salt.
While refined salt may contain about 97% to 99% of sodium chloride, unrefined salt contains around 87% of sodium chloride. Those who are opting for unrefined salt should check the label to ensure that processed salt is not sold as natural salt. Unrefined salt is not free-flowing.
On a concluding note, the main component in these salts is sodium chloride, which is necessary for the body to function properly. Sodium chloride is essential for maintaining the pH of the blood. It also helps to maintain electrolyte and fluid balance in the body. It also aids in muscle contraction and digestion.
According to experts, recommended intake of sodium should be somewhere between 1,500 and 2,300 milligrams per day for healthy adults, but RDA can vary in case of people suffering from hypertension, diabetes or kidney disease.
However, excessive use of either of these salts can put a person at an increased risk of developing cramps, electrolyte imbalance, hypertension and cardiovascular problems.