On first glance, there is not much difference in the type of salt you are using for cooking.
However, dig deeper, and you’ll understand that every type of salt has its own benefits and downsides.
One of the common mistakes people do is that they think salt is entirely bad for our health.
On the contrary, you need salt to balance your iodine level.
The problem is, how much salt is too much, and what type should you use for cooking.
We will try and answer that question.
Controlling sodium and iodine intake is the main thing you want to achieve with your salt in cooking.
There hasn’t been a study that has proven clear downside of using salt in regard with cardiovascular diseases.
However, it is common thinking among doctors, nutritionists and health experts that salt large doses of salt are damaging our health.
With that being said, let’s take a look at the different types of salts.
The good old table salt is the one most people use in their cooking.
It is the cheapest option, and one can safely say, the most dangerous. Why so?
Because the name itself suggests that the salt contains refined ingredients.
Or, in other words, most of the minerals are removed from the salt compound.
Another problem with table salt is its richness with sodium chloride.
Almost 97% of table salt is actually sodium chloride.
One of the reasons why people commonly think salt is dangerous is because of the sodium chloride, an ingredient that causes autoimmune disease when taken in heavy doses.
There are several subtypes of sea salt, with the two most common being crystalline and flaked sea salt.
Produced by evaporating seawater, sea salt is considered a healthy alternative to regular table salt because of the many benefits.
Sea salt contains several minerals including zinc, iron and potassium, helping us achieve the recommended daily intake of minerals.
When it comes to cooking, you can use crystalline sea salt for just-cooked foods where the crystals can complement your salad or fillets.
Flaked sea salt, on the other hand, is a better option for shellfish and vegetables.
The best way is to crush the crystals with your fingertips, and then sprinkle on freshly cooked food.
Himalayan Pink Salt
The main difference between Himalayan and regular sea salt is in the color.
Harvested from the Himalayan mountain, this pink salt gets its color due to the high amount of minerals like iron, magnesium, calcium and potassium.
One thing to note, Himalayan pink salt is usually a tad more expensive than the regular table or sea salt.
However, it is more pure and healthier, making it worth your money.
And the best part is, Himalayan pink salt contains the least amount of sodium.
Kosher salt has started gaining popularity in kitchens and cooking recently, as it was mostly used for religious purposes some 10 years ago.
Kosher salt is flaky, which is the only big difference between kosher and table salt.
The biggest health benefit of kosher salt, when compared to regular table salt, is that it contains less iodine and fewer additives.
Another advantage is that it dissolves extremely fast and the flavor disperses quickly, making it an ideal alternative for all cooking.
If you cannot afford to buy sea salt or Himalayan pink salt, kosher is the cheap, healthy alternative to regular table salt.
Why You Shouldn’t Use Regular Table Salt
I mentioned several times that table salt is the most dangerous type of salt.
But I didn’t mention the reasons why. So let me guide you through some of the harmful ingredients of table salt.
- Sodium Chloride: As mentioned previously, 97% of table salt is actually sodium chloride, a dangerous ingredient that causes autoimmune disease when taken in large doses. One of the most common diseases that occur due to high doses of sodium chloride is encephalomyelitis, an illness that happens due to the inflammation of the spinal cord.
- Iodine: While it is true that most of the salts these days contain iodine, the problem with regular table salt is that it contains synthetic iodine. As I mentioned at the beginning, table salt is refined salt and most of the ingredients are processed. Synthetic iodine is a compound that our body cannot absorb properly, which in turn, results with reverse effects of regular iodine.
- Fluoride: Another dangerous compound, fluoride can sometimes cause dysfunction of organs, mainly kidneys, brain damage and lower your IQ.
- Aluminum: Often linked with Alzheimer’s disease, aluminum can also harm your bone development.