Hmmm, it’s such a debatable topic, but this is about the quality of the salt we choose and its numerous essential functions in our body.
Essential is a term used to describe a nutrient that the human body cannot produce itself. eg Essential Fatty Acids.
In this article it is Salt. Lets start with the amazing benefits of true mineral and trace mineral rich salt.
The human body contains about eight ounces of salt and this is regulated by our kidneys and by perspiration.
The component in salt- sodium (Na) is involved in muscle contraction including that of the beating heart, nerve impulses and digestion of protein that helps build our bodies. It is an important nerve conductor but in the event of not taking in enough (which could threaten the nerves and muscles and interfere with the sodium-potassium pump that adjusts inter and extra-cellular pressure,) mechanisms in the body are in place, such as the generation of hormones, which come into play.
Another important component of salt, chloride(Cl), is also essential to good health, as it preserves acid-base balance in the body, which aids potassium absorption (taught in the Wholefood Workshop) and supplies the essence of digestive stomach acid. The ability given to the body to enable the blood to carry carbon dioxide from respiring tissues to the lungs, relies on salt.
Our small intestine absorbs almost all the salt taken in in our food or drinks, and this finds its way to the circulatory system and the extracellular tissue space. During rapid growth, a considerable amount is taken up by the skeletal system and other tissues, but after maturity, in a healthy person, the body eliminates what it does not need, through the normal excretory channels such as the kidneys.
Bjorn Folkow an eminent medical researcher studied the salt intake amounts of people from around the world and his reports are astounding. Worth while reading up on it.
But…and the big BUT, is the type of salt we ingest.
Table salt is refined or purified. The process that strips the salt of magnesium and other trace minerals, then in drying process an anti-caking acgents are used – some such as ferrocyanide and aluminosilicate compounds- these are two of the most concerning to our health. Then in 1920 – Iodine was added to salt. It was tested first on school girls and the findings were that goiters completely disappeared, but in later tests in Switzerland the prevalence of autoimmune thyroiditis increased, especially in areas where Iodine was added to the water supplies. Countries around the world began adding fluoride to table salt especially in France and South America, and then folic acid was added too.
When I make large soups, ferments or our pots of bone broth, Salt is the compound used to kill off pathogenic bacteria in natural fermentation processes and in broths, it helps draw out the minerals from the bones into the soup. It very rarely is used on a salad and instead mineral rich kelp is used to flavour our food, which in turn feeds our Thyroid.
So really in a nut shell, stay clear of all refined, fortified, processed salt. Pure celtic sea salt is about our best choice as the trace minerals and magnesium have been retained.