For ages Doctors have been telling us to reduce salt intake for a healthy heart and to help reduce blood pressure.
Research now shows that salt has little do with heart disease and reducing high blood pressure. In fact some studies indicate salt restriction does more harm than good.
What we really should be doing is concentrating on the type of salt we consume.
There is a difference!
Sodium and the Body
Sodium is an essential trace mineral. Since sodium is not produced by the body –it must be supplemented through diet to aid in proper bodily function. Sodium helps maintain fluid balance; regulates blood volume and nervous system activity; and ensures healthy heart function and muscle contraction.
When sodium is depleted (for example, via perspiration), it needs to be replaced for healthy electrolyte balance. Without dietary electrolyte replacement – sodium levels drop dramatically, causing symptoms of weakness; dizziness; vomiting; headache; fatigue; changes in mood and appetite. In every cases, sodium deficiency can be fatal.
Types of Salt
What we know as Table Salt is a highly refined product. During the manufacturing process, what was originally sea salt, is stripped of all its naturally occurring minerals (including iodine). Additives (including aluminum) are added to dry it and heat it to temperatures of about 1200 degrees. This alters the chemical structure. The stripped iodine is replaced with potassium iodide. The salt is then stabilized with dextrose, which turns it purple and then bleached to make it white. Doesn’t sound very appetizing does it!
Side Effects of Table Salt
- Refined salt passes through the body quickly. Researcher Dr. Henry Bieler found evidence of sodium starvation in the tissues of people who consumed refined salt. Salt is used in the body to retain water in cells, along with helping get nutrients from the small intestine. If we don’t have enough salt in the body, your cells can’t retain enough water – causing the cells to dehydrate.
- Table salt puts people at risk of developing cardiovascular events and chronic disease because of elevated blood pressure and arteriosclerosis.
- Refined salt causes your body to retain fluids in tissues leading to cellulite; rheumatoid arthritis and gout; kidney and gallbladder stones; high blood pressure; diabetes and obesity. Table salt is iodized and puts people at risk of over-iodization, which has been shown to abnormally enlarge the thyroid gland and cause thyroid-related autoimmune disorders.
Choices include Sea Salt; Celtic Sea Salt; and Himalayan Salt. Natural salts are unrefined with minimal processing and no additives. Natural drying techniques help these salts retain their rich mineral content and important electrolytes like potassium, magnesium and calcium.
Benefits of Sea Salt
- Contains trace minerals which help the body stay hydrated
- Sodium levels that help balance your sodium-potassium ratios
- Powerful electrolytes like magnesium
- Include trace elements for proper adrenal, immune & thyroid function
- Contains digestive enzyme enhancers, which aids in absorption of nutrients from foods.
Benefits of Celtic Salt
- Alkalize the body
- Balance blood sugars
- Eliminate mucus buildup
- Build immunity
- Improve brain function
- Increase energy
- Provide electrolyte balance
- Promote restful sleep
- Prevent muscle cramps
- Regulate heartbeat and blood pressure
Benefits of Himalayan Salt
- Regulate the water content throughout your body
- Promote healthy pH balance in your cells (especially your brain cells)
- Promote blood sugar health and can help reduce the signs of aging
- Absorb food particles through your intestinal tract
- Support respiratory health
- Promote sinus health
- Prevent muscle cramps
- Promote bone strength
- Regulate your sleep
- Support your libido
- Promote vascular health
- Regulate your blood pressure (with sufficient water and potassium intake).
Natural Salts, used in moderation, are a healthier alternative to regular table salt and can easily be found in supermarkets and health food stores.