Published on December 7, 2016
When I start talking to new clients about the necessity of lowering their sodium, and to especially stop adding table-salt to their dinner plates, the look of panic and horror often follows. So many people are addicted; so many, just by rote response, will reach for the salt shaker before they even taste their dinner plate food. At that point, “Well, what about sea salt?” is often the question we get.
Sea salt and table salt have the same basic nutritional value, despite the fact that sea salt is often marketed as a more natural and healthy alternative. The most notable differences between sea salt and table salt are in their taste, texture and processing.
Sea salt is produced through evaporation of ocean water or water from saltwater lakes, usually with little processing. Depending on the water source, this leaves behind certain trace minerals and elements. The minerals add flavor and color to sea salt, which also comes in a variety of coarseness levels.
Table salt is typically mined from underground salt deposits. Table salt is more heavily processed to eliminate minerals and usually contains an additive to prevent clumping. Most table salt also has added iodine, an essential nutrient that helps maintain a healthy thyroid.
By weight, sea salt and table salt contain the same amount of sodium.
People who are overweight are at increased risk of developing high blood pressure and heart disease. Our clients know that, and too many already have those medical issues. Most over-consume salt (sodium) in their diets which intensifies the problem. Many don’t realize that most of the sodium in their diet comes from the processed foods that we all eat, and not the table salt that we add to our cooking and meals. Additionally, certain processed foods that you wouldn’t think contain much sodium can contain alot of sodium.
Regardless of which type of salt you prefer, limit total sodium to less than 1,500 milligrams per day.