After reading a number of articles (most good, a few, not so good) I recently switched to Himalayan pink salt for cooking. There are a number of claims that I would like to believe stating the benefits. While you can’t believe everything you read, I prefer to give natural sources special consideration. Let’s face it, most of us use salt in our food. My feeling is that if I can substitute something that may be more beneficial to my health, or a product that, at the very least is not processed, why not try it? Like everything, moderation is the key. I use salt anyway so why not make a better choice?
In most of my recipes I include Himalayan pink salt, it can be substituted for table salt, sea salt or kosher salt if you prefer. I am not someone who likes to hunt for “special” ingredients when cooking and baking. While I do love specialty markets, my kitchen is stocked with items I find in any basic grocery store. Occasionally I will find something unique in Homegood’s, but that’s another story; I could get lost on that place! Anyway, you can find it in most stores now.
For me being healthy doesn’t mean a complete overhaul. I am constantly evaluating my lifestyle to make improvements wherever possible – it’s all about creating good habits. I thought I would share this since it’s not very common to see this listed in a recipe.
Below are a couple of articles that inspired me…
Want the simplest way to enjoy the health benefits of Himalayan salt? Just swap Himalayan salt for the refined stuff in your salt shaker!
Misinformed dietitians warn the public to decrease dietary sodium. Studies tell us that this is dangerous advice, since sodium restriction is associated with increased mortality (1) and insulin resistance (2, 3).
The health benefits of Himalayan salt include:
- Supporting thyroid and adrenal function
- Aiding in overall hormone balance for men and women
- Supports a healthy and fiery metabolism
- Contains 84 trace minerals vital for wellbeing
Himalayan salt should be freely enjoyed. (If you have kidney disease, however, it is recommended that you work with a health practitioner when increasing salt, unrefined or not.) Salt your food to taste, and maybe a little more!
Imagine everyone sitting down for a big family feast. The best china set gently upon silk cloth, crystals brimming with fresh apple-cinnamon-ginger juice. An array of baked, steamed and sautéed vegetables decorate the table. Suddenly Grandma reaches for the salt, startled she rears back and exclaims, “Why is the salt PINK?!”
Oh Grandma, “Its Himalayan salt, and it’s wonderful!”
The Himalayan mountain range stretches across Asia passing through China, Nepal, Myanmar, Pakistan, Bhutan, Afghanistan, and India. Most people associate the Himalayans with Mount Everest, the highest peak on this planet, but here is something new to think about- salt.
Once upon a time (a couple of hundreds of millions of years ago) crystallized sea salt beds, now deep within the Himalayans, were covered by lava. Aside from being kept it in a pristine environment that has been surrounded by snow and ice year round, the lava is thought to have protected the salt from modern-day pollution leading to the belief that Himalayan Pink salt is the purest salt to be found on earth. It is now hand-mined from the mountains and brought to the culinary market.
The many hues of pink, red and white are an indication of this salt’s rich and varying mineral and energy-rich iron content.
In the same manner that vitamins and minerals are perfectly packaged in fruits and vegetables, because this salt was formed naturally the minerals within the sodium work in synergy.
(Synergy is the interaction of multiple elements in a system to produce an effect different from or greater than the sum of their individual effects.)
Iodine- Natural salts are rich in iodine, so it doesn’t need to be artificially added in.
Less sodium consumed per serving- Himalayan salt is made of the same components as table salt but since the crystal structure is larger than refined salt, and by volume- this salt therefore has LESS sodium per 1/4 t. serving- because the sea salt crystals or flakes take up less room on a teaspoon than highly refined tiny table salt grains.
Packs a hearty 80+ minerals and elements- Himalayan salts are mineral packed crystals which formed naturally within the earth made up of 85.62% sodium chloride and 14.38% other trace minerals including: sulphate, magnesium, calcium, potassium, bicarbonate, bromide, borate, strontium, and fluoride (in descending order of quantity).
Because of these minerals Himalayan pink salt can:
- Create an electrolyte balance
- Increases hydration
- Regulate water content both inside and outside of cells
- Balance pH (alkaline/acidity) and help to reduce acid reflux
- Prevent muscle cramping
- Aid in proper metabolism functioning
- Strengthen bones
- Lower blood pressure
- Help the intestines absorb nutrients
- Prevent goiters
- Improve circulation
- Dissolve and eliminate sediment to remove toxins
- It is even said to support libido, reduce the signs of aging, and detoxify the body from heavy metals.
Pink Salt vs. Sea Salt
Even though pink salts come from the mountains, they are technically sea salts as well. All salt comes from a salted body of water—namely, an ocean or salt-water lake. However, Himalayan salt is said to be the purest form of sea salt.
Why Table Salt is Inferior
Commercial refined salt is not only stripped of all its minerals, besides sodium and chloride, but is also chemically cleaned, bleached and heated at unnecessary high temperatures.
In addition, it is treated with anti-caking agents which prevent salt from mixing with water in the salt container. These agents also prevent dissolving within our system leading to build up and then deposit in organs and tissue, causing severe health problems.
Finally, the iodine that is added into salt is usually synthetic which is difficult for your body to process properly. Shockingly under U.S. law, up to 2% of table salt can be additives.
The Many Uses of Pink Salt
Cooking and curing- use pre-ground salt or grinders like any other salt.