The Ultimate Regular Salt Alternatives
It would be near impossible to find a kitchen without salt on the table or in the pantry. We would almost suggest that if you were ever dining at someone’s home who didn’t have salt as a staple in their pantry to run far the other way. While salt doesn’t belong in absolutely every meal that passes through the kitchen, it is the most basic and foundational flavouring mineral that one can have.
While salt is a standard ingredient, there isn’t a standard salt! Salt comes in many forms and is harvested from both the land and sea. Before salt reaches your table, it goes through a refining process to remove any harmful impurities while leaving the good stuff behind; sodium chloride.
Sodium chloride is the magical ingredient that our bodies need in order to absorb and transport nutrients, maintain blood pressure and a healthy balance of fluids and relax muscles. There’s a reason sea salt baths exist for post-exercise!
Considering there are so many types of salt we break down the benefits of our two favourites and compare them with the rest.
Introducing Himalayan Salt and Sea Salt:
Benefits of Himalayan Salt
Himalayan salt comes from the Khewra Salt Mine in Pakistan and is pink because of all of its minerals. Yes, the pink colour is actually completely natural. The salt is mined and ground by hand, making it the most naturally sourced form of salt there is. Himalayan salt also contains up to 84 essential trace elements and minerals that are essential for the health of our body.
Himalayan salt has many health benefits including the ability to improve respiratory diseases, balance your body’s pH levels, reduce signs of aging through improved sleep quality and better blood pressure, regulate blood sugar and can even increase your libido!
One teaspoon of Himalayan salt contains 2,300 mg of sodium.
Benefits of Sea Salt
Sea Salt is an all-natural calcium, sodium and potassium supplement with no additives and no chemicals – just raw macrobiotic sea salt. As a rich source of Macrobiotics & Electrolytes, sea salt has high amounts of calcium, potassium and iron to help protect from heart diseases and improve your brain muscle and bone health. Sea salt also has iodine which is essential for a healthy thyroid.
Though it’s 72 essential trace minerals, sea salt nourishes and strengthens your body every time you add it to your meal. The potassium and sodium found in sea salt team up to eliminate bloating and water retention while the high sodium levels focus on easing muscle cramps and helping you absorb calcium.
One teaspoon of sea salt contains 2,000 mg of sodium.
Himalayan Salt vs Sea Salt
As both Himalayan salt and sea salt are not processed, are naturally sourced and both contain high amounts of sodium chloride and trace minerals choosing between the two can really come down to personal preference.
Himalayan Salt vs Rock Salt
Rock salt refers to a salt that has come from oceans that have been dried for up to hundreds of millions of years. Pink Himalayan salt is the most commonly known version of rock salt.
Sea Salt vs Table Salt
The biggest difference between sea salt and table salt is how it is harvested. While sea salt is created through the evaporation of oceans and salt lakes, table salt is mined from the ground before it is then processed. Table salt needs to be processed once harvested as it contains excess minerals and additives while sea salt is all-natural. Once the processing is complete table salt only contains sodium chloride and not the other trace minerals available from sea salt. While sea salt seems like the best alternative due to its lack of human intervention, it can carry traces of the pollution that our oceans are inundated with.
One teaspoon of salt contains 2,300 mg of sodium.
Sea Salt vs Kosher Salt
Kosher salt is a coarse, less refined salt that is made of uneven large grains from salt mines. Also nicknamed rock salt, kosher salt adds crunch and brine to savoury dishes and can be used at any point of the cooking process. It can be used for more than table salt and spreads easily across dishes due to its large makeup. Sea salt and kosher salt can be used interchangeably, however, kosher salt is slightly more processed and like table salt, kosher salt only contains sodium chloride and not the extra trace minerals that are prevalent in sea salt. Sea salt also has a lighter texture, is presented in pyramid shapes and is not as coarse.
One teaspoon of kosher salt contains 1,800 mg of sodium.
So, Which Salt is the Healthiest?
Of course, natural chemical-free options are always the healthiest. For this reason, people say sea salt is the healthiest, but pink Himalayan salt is just as healthy. Because you only use salt in small amounts, the difference between the two salts is small. Considering they both contain additional minerals like calcium, iron and potassium the salt you choose is up to your flavour and presentation preference.
And finally, Which Salt is Best for Cooking?
The answer to which salt is best for cooking depends on what you are cooking! If you need salt to be fine and quick dissolving, sea salt is best. This includes baking, seasoning and preservation. Sea salt uses are endless and it always tastes fantastic. Himalayan salt can also be used for these meals. Himalayan salt flakes, however, has the added benefits of presenting beautifully as it adds a pop of flavour and colour to every meal!