Salt: Why Processed Is Bad For You and What You Can Do About It
Why is "Normal" Processed Salt Bad For Me?
The iodized processed salt that is found in almost everything, and seen on almost every American dinner table is indeed harmful to the human body. Salt in its natural form, as found in Mother Nature is not just sodium chloride, with a little bit of iodine added to it. Instead of 3 minerals it is closer to 80 some minerals! Most of these are in trace amounts but the body still enjoys having the full gamut of minerals, it likes variety. Not only is processed table salt devoid of essential minerals, it is also heat blasted and chemically treated. These chemicals are anti-caking agents and aluminum. Did I mention they also bleach the salt! YUM! Lastly excessive salt of any kind, but especially processed salt is dehydrating. Healthy people's cells are always more hydrated then unhealthier people. A good way to insure you will have wrinkly, dry skin is to consume large amounts of processed salt daily.
Why Do We Refine It And Why Does It Have Added Iodine?
We as a society mainly eat refined salt because of capitalism. It is simply cheaper and easier to mass produce processed salt than it is to use real, in tact salt from other sources. Iodine was added to salt because many health problems were arising from people eating processed salt. The most obvious was goiter. People were getting goiter because processed salt antagonizes the other minerals in the body and creates deficiencies, especially with Iodine. However, the salt industry blamed these health problems on bad soil, which is a problem in our country but the main issue is with consuming too much processed salt.
Don't Fall For The Sea Salt Scam
In response to many people finding out the unhealthy effects of regular table salt, the industry has switched over to call their salts "sea salts". Yes they are from the sea but this still doesn't make them unprocessed. If the salt is bright white, then it is processed and bleached and bad for your body.
How To Avoid Processed Salt
There are two main ways to get processed salt out of your diet. First is to eat as little processed, and fast foods as possible. Every food you buy in the grocery store will have labels on the back. Start observing them, and you will see how loaded most foods are with salt. Fresh, natural food, that has life giving energy, doesn't have any added salt. The second way is to replace the white processed salt sitting on your table right now, with a healthier salt. I will explain these options below.
The first alternative is Celtic Sea Salt. This salt is harvested in Brittany, France off of the coasts of the Celtic Sea. It has 82 essential minerals in it compared to the 3 of table salt. I have used this stuff for years, and I swear it tastes better than table salt as well.
The second alternative are Himalayan Pink Salts. These are salts mind in Northern Pakistan, near the Himalayan Mountains. You can also get similar salts by Real Salt, which are harvested in Utah. Both are much better alternatives then using processed salt.
The third alternative is not salt, but rather dried seaweeds. Dried Kelp and seaweeds can give food great flavor and a salty taste to your cooking. This is especially helpful for someone who has to worry about excessive sodium intake. Also, seaweeds are loaded with mineral and nutrients making them a health food. Keep in mind that with its high iodine content, kelp doesn't react well with some people. I have tried all 3 of these and I can't pick a favorite. They all 3 provide slightly different tasting, healthy alternatives to processed table salt.
Please don't panic, freak out and think that all of your health problems are from processed salt, because they aren't. However many doctors and myself do believe that regular consumption of processed salt is hard on the body and can be a contributing factor to many ailments, especially ones the occur because of a mineral deficiency. Why not do your body a favor and limit if from your diet? Cutting it out of the diet can only have positive benefits. Your body does not want a bleached, shell of its former self(whole sea salt) in it. It wants the real deal and if you give your body the real deal in all other aspects of diet, then you will most definitely reap the benefits. I will continue to consume natural salts for the rest of my life because I believe the slight extra cost is absolutely worth it.