- Food and Cooking»
- Cooking Ingredients
25 Everyday Uses for Salt (Sodium Chloride)
A Move to More Natural Medicines
Homeopathic and alternative medicine have become big business in recent years. More and more adults are looking for ways to treat common problems and ailments. There is a growing concern about both the expense and side effects of the more complex world of synthetic chemical and prescription medicines. There are physicians that are developing increasingly popular practices using alternative medicines and, there are physicians that are adding alternative medicines as a part of their traditional practices. There was a time, not so long ago, that our mothers and grandmothers were the unofficial holistic practitioners of our families. They knew that the herbs, spices and vegetables they grew in their gardens were good for more than cooking. Do you remember?
Great Uses for Table Salt
One of the kitchen cabinet items used for many things in my house was salt. My mother would reach for the salt for everything from treating minor sore throat pain to soothing aching feet. It is amazing what one can do with one little box of salt. Following is a list of some great uses for table salt.
- Minor sore throat - mixing a small amount of salt in some warm water and gargling will ease the pain of a sore throat.
- Tired aching feet - mixing salt with warm water in a foot pail or tub will bring a smile to your face. Mixing salt in bathwater will ease the soreness and ache in our muscles. Epsom salt will work as well.
- Muscle cramps - I have suffered, of and on, from muscle cramps in my legs and thighs most of my life. My mother taught me to place a little salt in my mouth or under my tongue as it dissolves it begins the ease the pain and help the muscle relax.
- Sprains or strains - taking a warm, damp towel, sprinkling salt inside and fold, then place on affected area will bring relief until you can get to the doctor.
- Bee stings - by wetting the sting and covering it with salt will bring soothing relief. If you are allergic to bees then you should do what you normally do. The method just described will sooth and ease the pain.
- Cleaning teeth and freshening breath - mix salt with baking soda and use as toothpaste. Mixing salt with baking soda and a little water makes a great mouth wash.
- Mix salt in very warm water dip a cotton ball, cotton pad or small towel in it lay across the eye to reduce puffiness.
- Sooth the irritation of poison ivy by soaking in a salt-water bath.
- Make your own saline solution and drops by mixing ¼ teaspoon of salt, ¼ teaspoon of baking soda and mixing with 8 ounces of boiling water. Let it cool before use.
Using Salt Around the House
There are many others uses for salt around the house--inside and out. Here are a few:
- We ate fresh vegetables either from my mother’s garden, roadside vendors, or the grocery’s produce section and before cooking them, of course, they needed to be washed/cleaned. Greens (mustard, turnips, collars, etc) where dirt and grit can be trapped on and between the leaves is cleaned in short order when salt is added to the water.
- Clean stains coffee and tea stains from cups by rubbing with damp sponge or cloth dipped in or sprinkled with salt.
- Salt sprinkled on a grease fire will help to extinguish.
- Salt sprinkled on snow and ice in the winter will melt it from steps and entryways to house.
- Salt placed in your coffee pot or percolator, filled with water, then boil or percolate as usual, will clean, deodorize, and take the bitterness out of the next pot of coffee.
- Sprinkling a good helping of salt down the drain and running hot water will help eliminate the grease build up and freshen its smell.
- Sprinkling salt outside can deter ants.
- Sprinkling salt on cracks in sidewalk or driveway and pouring on hot water will kill the weeds.
- Put salt in the water before boiling an egg and it will be much easier to peel.
- Putting a little salt in vase before adding fresh flowers will keep them fresh longer.
- Make your own bath salt by mixing equal parts table salt, Epsom salt, and sea salt. Add a few drops of essential oil (your choice of fragrance. May add food coloring and put in decorative jars.
- Rubbing a cutting board or your counter top with salt and water will clean it….mixing with a little bleach will also disinfect the cutting board. Rinse well after cleaning.
- Clean up oil spills on driveway or garage floor by sprinkling with liberal amount of salt. Let stand for 15 or 20 minutes lightly scrub with brush and rinse.
- If the family pet brought in fleas sprinkle carpet and rugs with salt, let stand for a few hours then vacuum.
- Loosen and clean a glass casserole dish by filling with boiled water plus a few tablespoons of salt. Let stand until the water is cool--wash as usual.
A Final Thought
Are you worth your salt?
Once upon a time in ancient Roman tradition soldiers were paid in salt rather than money. It was called salarium argentums (salt money) which is where the word salary originated.
In ancient Greece salt was traded for slaves and gave us the phrase “not worth your salt”.
Salt was considered a very valuable commodity and people were in constant search for salt mines to strike it rich.
Salt was once used as a symbol of integrity and honesty. A covenant of salt when used as a binding agreement was thought to last forever.
And may you always remember this little fact, you are the salt of the earth.
Love to all,