What type of salt is healthier?
Sea salt, Himalayan pink salt, table salt, kosher salt… When it comes to seasoning a dish, are some options healthier than others? ? The Rumor Detector adds its two cents to the question.
Regardless of the type chosen, the chemical composition of the salt remains essentially the same: sodium, chlorine as well as traces of minerals in minute quantities.
A question of geography
Overall, it is above all the origin and the size of the grain that distinguishes the kinds of salt. Table salt is taken from salt mines. It then goes through a process that gives it a fine texture, suitable for recipes. It contains no residual minerals.
Kosher salt also comes from salt mines. However, it is made up of large crystals. Thanks to the size of its grain, it adheres better to food (especially meat), which makes it easier to use for kosher butchery.
Pink Himalayan salt, meanwhile, comes from a unique place: the Khewra mine in Pakistan. The minerals present in small quantities (barely 2% of its composition) give it its distinctive pink color. It is estimated to contain 84 different minerals.
It is this last characteristic that has attributed several properties to Himalayan pink salt: improved cardiovascular and respiratory health, better sleep, stronger bones.
But does the presence of these minerals really make it superior to other salts? To verify this, an Australian research group analyzed in 2020 the mineral composition of around thirty samples of pink salt. If we have indeed detected magnesium, calcium and potassium, the fact remains that their quantity remains too low to have an impact. To meet our nutritional mineral needs, we should consume 30 grams of pink salt per day, which is six times the salt recommendation of the World Health Organization…
Health Canada, for its part, offers a similar dose, representing the equivalent of a teaspoon of salt per day, and recalls that too much sodium consumption leads to a greater risk of suffering from high blood pressure, and therefore heart disease and strokes.
Finally, compared to Himalayan salt, sea salt also contains minerals such as potassium, iron and calcium, but in such minute quantities that you would also have to ingest dangerously high amounts of salt to have daily the quantities of minerals that one could receive through food.
Sea salt is obtained by evaporation of sea water. It does not undergo any transformation and this is the reason why it retains traces of certain nutrients naturally present in salt water.
A matter of taste?< /h3>
If no salt is healthier than another, maybe the difference is in the taste? According to a 2010 study, some sea salts have a stronger flavor. The researchers hypothesized that it could be a solution to reduce salt consumption, since less quantity would be necessary to obtain the same salty taste.
However, it is necessary to be remember that most of the salt we eat is already in processed foods and most of the time it is table salt. A person who wants to reduce salt in their diet should therefore opt for fresh or minimally processed foods more often.
< p>Salt is salt! Regardless of color or provenance, they all have substantially the same composition. However, depending on how you want to use it in the kitchen, some choices are more appropriate than others.